TCHP done, Partial mastectomy done, Now Radiation, then?
I'm not going to mince words: I hate cancer. I hate my doctors even more. I've had a hard time getting answers to questions and my oncologist flaked out for about a month, leaving no back up available, after he had some family issues. Which, I understand he's human and life happens, but there should be some contingency plan for times when he's not available.
Everything seems like a fight. I keep getting robo-calls from the hospital to set up echocardiograms. I've had 3, the last 2 are missing. My doctor's office and the hospital claim to not have any record of these...they even asked me if I was *sure* I had the tests done. At my surgery my family was in the waiting room and no one talked to them. They claimed they couldn't be found and then a befuddled nurse got me confused with someone else, told me my boyfriend was looking for me (married a couple of decades, so, ok...) and then gave me discharge instructions that literally contradicted itself on every other page. (I pointed this out to the surgeon who pointed it out to a clinical director and both agreed the info was nonsensical).
To the surgeon's credit, he did say there was a massive communication error and tried to make it right. (Worth noting that in my pre-operation appointment my surgeon first insisted I had a positive node biopsy from my original biopsy, I corrected him on that point and he didn't check his notes until he heard it in a deeper voice aka my husband corroborating my story.)
Flash forward to radiation doc this week and he was kind enough to note there was an order for an echocardiogram but no sign of one. And I fought to get genetic testing so he gave me the results....the only trouble was that the information was for another patient - NOT ME. He then continued on to tell me that I probably didn't know anything about radiation...I said I had to do research on the Therac-25 accidents for my master's degree (ironically one focused on limiting human error in systems) and that I knew enough about LINAC machines and the history of radiation machines to be squeamish (I left off the part I was thinking "especially given what incompetent nits you've all been since the jump").
He also informed me, to my surprise, that I could expect to have 5-10 years of Tamoxifen to look forward to... something my regular oncologist hadn't mentioned. I was under the impression I was looking forward to a life without these circus monkeys in lab coats prescribing me various poisons for up to a decade more. I thought I was just looking at one more year of herceptin and then FREEDOM. It was like a bucket of cold ice water over my head...in addition to renewed concerns that they can't seem to keep records straight.
Is the system broken or is it just me? I can't seem to establish any kind of meaningful communication with these people. I don't trust them with all of the mistakes and miscommunication I've encountered so far. I would switch doctors but I have a suspicion it won't get better elsewhere and all I'll accomplish is a loss of money and time. Any advice?