Monthly Archives: November 2011

Zebra hats for the holidays…You know you want one :o)

I have blogged about having NETs/Carcinoid cancer. It is a rare disease & under diagnosed greatly. Like every other cancer & illness these days they have a ribbon, but we also have a mascot. The zebra is the mascot for NETs/Carcinoid Cancer.

The Web MD definition of Zebra:
The term “zebra” in medicine does not refer to the striped African animal but to an unlikely diagnostic possibility. It comes from an old saying in teaching medical students about how to think logically in regard to the differential diagnosis: “When you hear hoof beats, think of horses, not zebras.”

Dr. Eugene Woltering of New Orleans part of “The Dream Team” for carcinoid patients is credited with the idea that Carcinoid patients embrace the zebra in order to promote awareness.

I am always looking for things I can get, cause lets face it zebra prints are fun.. So my husband was out & found some great winter hats with a zebra stripe. We were able to get them at an awesome price so I decided to get a bunch & sell them for the holidays. Everyone loves a cute winter hat.

Right now I have 10 hats, but if there is a demand I can try to get more over the weekend. I am offering them for 10 dollars, plus 3 dollars shipping to the US. International orders welcome, but as always, shipping will be more & will take longer.  If you are interested email me at Right now I just have 10 of them right now & I will update when I am able to pick up more. I wanted to make sure there is a want before I go pick up to many.

Thank you for supporting me & I hope you all love the idea of the hats.


Our late & simple Thanksgiving

Our Thanksgiving this year was very different from years past. We had planned to do our own Thanksgiving again by our selves. We had wanted to try to make it to Marks families house, but we did not think I would be able to do the trip.

The Saturday before Thanksgiving I was admitted into the hospital again. Second time in two months a combination of a Carcinoid flare-up & what they call paralytic ileus (temporary paralysis of the small intestine) & low potassium levels. Four days in the hospital with an NG tube down my nose, countless bags of potassium in my IV & more pain killers than I care to admit.

I was discharged on Tuesday, but was on a liquid diet for 24 hours then soft foods for a few days. So I was not going to be able to eat dinner on Thanksgiving. My husband decided we would wait a couple days to have our dinner. We didn’t have any family in town & no one was going to be coming over so it didn’t matter really when we had our dinner. After all I was home now & we are able to spend the weekend together. My 16 year old was a little put out at first that we had to wait, but she understood. PA had no idea & really didn’t care anyway. Mark was just happy I was home. So Thanksgiving came & went. We hung out at home & watched Christmas shows & just celebrated being together.

On Sat. we had one more problem to contend with. While I was in the hospital & all of us were preoccupied some rats had had their way with our food storage. They got into a bunch of food & we had to throw out a bunch of stuff. So while the turkey was cooking Mark was out in the garage with two friends taking care of the problem. They had to tear the whole garage apart to find where they were nesting, clean it up & seal up where they were coming in. They succeeded & had it all cleaned up & put back together again by late afternoon.

During all of this I was in the house with PA because Mark did not want me out there. I cleaned a bit but mostly kept PA occupied. I wasn’t really supposed to be doing much anyway.

Dinner was very simple turkey; instant potatoes (because ours were eaten by the rats) boxed stuffing, gravy & cranberry sauce. Shann made some candied yams or actually mashed because I over cooked them LOL.. PA was too funny she didn’t want anything but decided to try the yams. She liked them & would only eat them out of the big bowl, so I let her.
We did not have the fancy table with decorations, lots of family or all the extras, but it was one of the best Thanksgivings we have had in a long time. We ate in the living room in front of the TV. We laughed & had a good time. It didn’t even matter that it was a couple days late ☺

I think we do simple well…

NETs/Carcinoid Awareness Day! Just Some Facts…

Today November 10 is NETs/Carcinoid Awareness Day. My friend Jennifer started to post some facts about the disease on Facebook & I added a few. Then I decided to do a blog post. We live with on a daily basis. It’s not a pretty disease much of it still misunderstood by the medical community. Please take some time & read a little about this disease, so that it will be better understood. This is my part in raising awareness.

#1: This cancer can affect multiple organs in the body including the pancreas, heart, liver, intestines, lungs, & kidneys. It can cause people to gain weight, lose weight, cognitive impairment, memory loss, diabetes, heart disease, small bowel obstructions, and more. Everyday stress & many foods cause symptoms to act up.

#2: Most prevalent Carcinoid / NET symptoms are diarrhea, constipation, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, ulcers, wheezing, flushing, heart palpitations, sinus tachycardia, bradycardia, and blood pressure fluctuations & some cognitive difficulties.

#3: Over 90% of all Carcinoid/NETs are incorrectly diagnosed & treated for the wrong disease (IBS & Cohn’s Disease are the most common). From initial onset of symptoms the average time to proper diagnosis exceeds five years. 
Took doctors 5 years to diagnose me.

#4: With Carcinoid/NET cancer… This cancer often does not respond to traditional chemo treatments and does not go into remission. If caught early (usually accidently), it can be cured. If not caught until advanced stages, the patient will never be cancer-free. Tumors will continue to pop up.

#5: More than 11,000 new cases of Carcinoid/NETs are diagnosed each year, which now means that NETs cancers are twice as common as pancreatic cancer. 
Most physicians are often not aware of current diagnostic & treatment options.

#6: A neuroendocrine tumor (NET) begins in the hormone-producing cells of the body’s neuroendocrine system, which is made up of cells that are a cross between traditional endocrine cells (or hormone-producing cells) and nerve cells.

#7: 5 year survival rate for people with carcinoid syndrome is 50%. Mortality rate for those with carcinoid heart disease is 1 to 3 years.

#8: I cannot shop on Black Fridays. Shopping in large crowds quickly causes carcinoid symptoms. I get overheated very fast; feel faint, sick to my stomach, dizzy, and my heart races and pounds really hard in my chest. Followed by many hours of intestinal problems. It sounds similar to an anxiety attack, but it’s not.