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Date Posted: 09:18:06 10/06/12 Sat
Subject: Re: My Show This Coming Sunday With Iconic Actress Joan Van Ark!
In reply to:
's message, "Re: My Show This Coming Sunday With Iconic Actress Joan Van Ark!" on 08:23:00 10/06/12 Sat
I am posting the last enterence Raven posted on her facebook page. I hope this helps those of you who do not have facebook. Raven says:
Guys, I'm sorry that I haven't checked in for a while, but this latest blow was a big one. The level of this setback (the results of the PET Scan) have me completely off kilter with fear, worry, and honest to God pure exhaustion here. I was really on a high there for a while. I felt that things were looking up. I have fought harder than you know. To add insult to injury, we were dealt a huge ...blow yesterday. I know that most of you will remember the day I came out here in tears after a very callous and inhumane breast surgeon told me that she was not going to remove my reoccurrence of cancer because a case like mine isn't worth it. She basically called me a dead girl walking and felt that it wasn't worth her surgical efforts to go any further. Many of you were as outraged as my family and I, and encouraged me to file a report about this insensitive and cruel encounter. I let it go at the time because I have a great deal on my plate, but it cost me a lot of valuable time as I frantically searched for a surgeon that would take my case and remove this and other reoccurrences (which I have in a wonderful plastic surgeon now) as this thing continued to grow and spread on me (that's what her decision cost me). That's not even the entire extent of the damage she did because I gave up on myself there for a while believing what she fed me that day (that my case was hopeless and to just go away and let it overtake me and not bother her anymore).
I've mentioned this on a few of my radio shows, but have never named her (I will be filing an official complaint once I get my bearings here again). To refresh your memory, I was blessed to have the loveliest and kindest breast surgeon in the world. She held my hand throughout the entire wide excision mastectomy last October. She was truly there for me. She is a bit of a novelty these days because she actually cares about her patients. We are not irritating insects that need to be swatted away. When I had my first reoccurrence of Angiosarcoma, I called her office feeling some comfort in the knowledge that she would get me through this. I was horrified to learn that she was on maternity leave and would be gone for three months. I was left at the mercy of her partner who is nothing like her as I sadly learned. She had a coldness in her eyes from the moment I met her. She did tell me that everything would be OK, that we would handle this, and so she did a biopsy (they are quite painful and only encourage the cells to divide and grow at a faster rate once done).
When it came back as what I suspected it would be (Angiosarcoma again) she phoned me that day and told me that I was right, as it was indeed Angiosarcoma again, and the next thing she said caused me more heartache and pain that I can even begin to convey. I was fully expecting her to tell me when her earliest opening was to get this removed as it was also beginning to cause me a great deal of pain as well, and she said (and I quote because I will never forget it), I can't see the point in doing another surgical recession in a case like yours. It wasn't worth it. I was so horrified and overcome with emotion that I didn't even know what to say for a moment. I asked her to repeat that because I was so taken aback that a doctor who took an oath was basically sending me home to die, dismissing me as a case not worth the effort, and letting me think all hope was lost. I have never cried so hard in my life. I honestly cried for days. Not only had this monster done the last thing you should ever do and tell a cancer patient to just give up and that they are not worth your time, but she had cut into me already leaving me in a incredibly dangerous situation with the Angiosarcoma now spreading faster and angrier as it was sliced into now! Why did she bother doing a biopsy if she knew that she was going to do nothing if it came back positive! I was a crumbled mess when John got home that day. I finally picked myself up off the floor and frantically searched for a new surgeon who could remove this mass. He is not a breast surgeon (he is a plastic surgeon) but he helped me and has continued to help me as they reoccur. Every physician I have talked to has explained that you cannot just leave these painful lesions on the skin no matter what is going on inside. It can get gangrene or infected! Thank God, none of this has happened yet.
I never told her off like I wanted to in the worst way that day, and did not contact the medical board yet about this horrific experience, but I guess she wasn't done. I don't know what runs through this woman's veins, but it's not blood. Now that I have a massive reoccurrence requiring hospitalized surgery, my Oncologist and I felt confident in the sense that my original breast surgeon would be there to handle this nightmare for me (surely she would be back from maternity leave by now, and she was a like a second mom to me in many ways). I had been waiting since Wednesday of last week for a call from her office because I was told their office would call to schedule an appointment. Just yesterday, my Oncologist called to tell me that as much as she wants to do this and help me, her hands are tied basically and would not elaborate any further. After hearing my utter shock and disbelief, he stated that this had nothing to do with ME and that he could not go into it any further, (he didn't have to) as I got exactly what was going on and could barely breathe. That monster that blew me off that dark day and already caused me enormous pain and suffering, struck again. She is the head of this practice, and my wonderful breast surgeon, who I adore, has only been there for a year and a half. This monster passing herself off as a doctor, who cruelly wrote me off that day, is obviously putting pressure on my breast surgeon to not take the case. As a newbie in the practice, I guess she feels cornered. I am heartbroken and sick to death here over this (as if I don't have enough)!
Because what is happening to me now is way over my plastic surgeons head (out of his league and he admits it), John and I had to visit a complete stranger today to try to get him to take this complicated case! Never in a million years did we think we would be back to finding a new breast surgeon once the wonderful one I had was back from her maternity leave (and she wants to help me, but can't)! I feel like I am in a living nightmare. I am definitely filing a major complaint with the center I go to as well as the medical board in detail. In the meantime, John and I lost a valuable week of waiting for nothing and given yet another blow. The breast surgeon we met with today was clearly worried about a case this rare. He said he is meeting with a special board over things next Tuesday and having conversations with my Oncologist and my Plastic Surgeon (who he has worked with in surgery). He thinks we may need him because he wants a repeat of last October with extra wide margins, and this time we may need grafts because my skin was only just starting to grow back a little. I am heartsick. No other way to sugarcoat it, and I won't bullshit the home team. All of this should be the last thing I am dealing with! This one woman has cost me so much in so many ways that I cannot even fathom what she is thinking. What the hell did I do to her! I can't help that I have Infiltrating Ductal Carcinoma and Angiosarcoma advancing at the same time. I didn't ask for this (and doctors are supposed to help you for God sakes)! Do no harm! I guess she forgot the oath she took. I am beginning to feel as if nobody wants to deal with a case like this and I'm on my own. The worst part is knowing that my original doctor wants to do this surgery and help me, but can't for some political reason with the incredible monster who runs this practice. Needless to say, it's been the darkest two weeks yet. They have written me off and act as if I am literally a dead girl walking.
Not everyone has the money to go to the best centers in the world. Not all of us have the means, and traveling with a poor immune system is not really something that would be good for me right now. It's not like a live in the boondocks here either so this is uncalled for in every possible way. I meet with the new surgeon next Wednesday to see when we can get this scheduled. He said that he just wants to make sure he has met with everyone and has a full understanding on a case like mine before he picks up that scalpel (and he was pushing Chemo a few times, which had me ready to just implode). As horrible as my situation is THAT IS NOT THE ANSWER !
I just haven't even had the energy to find the words until now. I didn't want to leave you hanging and as always, I will keep nothing from you. I will always share with you. I'm not the optimistic Raven I was even a month ago, but I am also not ready to do die just yet. I will find a way to push through, but it's just not today. I think I am still in shock from all of this.
I am leaving all the pain behind me on Monday for my show with Andrea Evans. No other way to do it right except to find a way to put it in a box up high on a shelf that day, and enjoy having someone so lovely and so incredibly special on my show. John feels that it¡¯s exactly the distraction I need. Wednesday I meet with the new surgeon a second time, and then Thursday I have my show with Jaclyn Smith, so once again, all put into a box for that space if time. I love you guys so much. You have no idea what your beautiful notes mean to me. I really would have gotten out here sooner, but I honestly could not even think straight. I love you. Thank you for truly being there for me. ¢¾See More
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