Ulendon wrote:... I don't really have an option to take much time off work. So whatever treatment plan we come up with needs to take that into account.
For your meeting with your surgeon in the morning, you could ask about your overall treatment calendar. Your staging now is set at T3bN2M0, or Stage III-C. For this level of rectal cancer, the treatment plan is relatively fixed once they determine your overall risk level and the type of treatment regimen they want to pursue.
Typically, the overall treatment for a Stage III rectal cancer patient would last about 10 months overall, and for you it would probably look something like this:
November: Diagnosis and staging.
December-January: Long-course chemo/radiation.
February: One month of rest/recuperation
March: Laparoscopic LAR surgery, ileostomy surgery followed by rest & recuperation
April -July: Four months of first-line adjuvant chemotherapy.
August: Rest and recuperation followed by ileostomy reversal surgery
September: Start of the 5-year surveillance period
However, it would probably be the oncologist (not the surgeon) who would finalize your overall treatment plan. And this is where you might want to seek a second opinion to confirm that the final overall treatment plan is in fact the best one for you. (You could get a second opinion about this at UCSF, for example, but this would require that you have all of your Kaiser medical records consolidated and organized and ready to submit to them. BTW, the people at UCSF know your surgeon. Her name
is listed in the directory there.)
For now, you can ask the surgeon what she thinks., but eventually you will have to have a proper medical team headed by an oncologist.
When is Kaiser going to assign an oncologist to your case?