CREDIT CARD: #15

One fine day during this 2016 holiday season, I heard the postal truck arrive at my mailbox.  After scurrying to retrieve the mail, I was thrilled to receive a credit card application made out to "Hypochondriactress.com".  ME.    

The reason I got pumped-up (pun intended) about purchasing echocardiagram machines is that I could then perform my own transthorasic sonogram tests - AT HOME.  I have pretended to be a doctor so many times, I now think I am a doctor and a qualified technician.  This short movie shows my first echo test, a  requirement before chemotherapy and Herceptin treatment.     Since my Herceptin treatment lasts a year, I receive a TEE (transthorasic echocardiagram) every 3 months to make sure the antibody is not affecting my heart in a bad way.  These treatments are not for the "faint of heart".  A TEE doesn't hurt AT ALL and Herceptin treatment really has very few side effects.  The main side effects for me are  having to weigh each time, which is horrifying and getting stuck with the needle in my port.

Though there are many different types of echocardiagram tests, I always receive a transthorasic echo, using an ultrasound machine and a skilled technician.

transthorasic  echocardiagram

I want to thank the scientists at UCLA who first discovered trastuzumab (Herceptin) as well as Dr. Dennis Slamon

Dr. Dennis Slamon helped develop an effective antibody treatment for HER2+ breast cancer.

Dr. Dennis Slamon helped develop an effective antibody treatment for HER2+ breast cancer.

I would also be remiss if I did not thank Carol, the financial advisor at the Bruno Cancer Center for helping me secure the Genetech BioOncology Co-pay Card.  This as been such a benefit to my finances, and I am very grateful.  

The cost of the echocardiagram machine I have my "heart" set on is on sale down from $35,000 to $28,000.   The cost for a single treatment of Herceptin- around $9,200.  I'm working on my credit scores.