My poor little heart has been through a lot in the 57 years it's been ticking. It's beat wildly with excitement. It has felt so much love and happiness that I thought it would burst. It's been broken to the point when I didn't think it would recover. It has swelled with pride.
But right now my heart could have issues.
COULD.. but hopefully, NOT. The current drug I'm on (until August), Herceptin, can cause "left ventricular cardiac dysfunction, arrhythmias, hypertension, disabling
cardiac failure, cardiomyopathy, and cardiac death."
Given that the heart is somewhat vital for living - an ECKO was performed on my heart prior to starting Herceptin (August 2012) and has continued every 3 months. Wednesday (6th) is another ECKO. On my last visit - my heart showed a little "damage" but thankfully it wasn't enough to stop the treatment.
Heart damage is a frightening risk but stopping Herceptin is a sobering risk. Before 2007, only Stage IV HER2+++ breast cancer patients were given this drug - which is considered "a miracle drug". In 2007 the FDA approved this drug for all breast cancer patients that are HER2+++. Prior to that - anyone with less then Stage IV was told to get their affairs in order. There was no way to effectively fight and stop the aggressive HER2 gene.
If my heart is deemed more damaged - my doctor will stop the Herceptin.
There is nothing else "out there" in the same league to fight my nasty little HER2 gene. Fighting will become a different battle.
So right now I wait ... a little anxiously.... for another ECKO hoping my heart is still strong and healthy.