Risk of Recurrence of Breast Cancer

Surviving Breast Cancer Now!

herceptin_drugMy body has endured surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. As a result of this I have lost my hair and my energy. Still, that tumour the size of a baked bean is perceived as a threat. Its return must be further discouraged. My oncologist therefore insists on mammograms every six months and prescribes Letrozole.

Breast cancer is often discussed as a general condition, but there are several different types that require different treatments. One way to distinguish breast cancer cells is through your genes. When you are diagnosed with breast cancer, your doctor will test the cancerous cells to determine their genetic makeup. My tumour had more of the HER2 protein in it than it should have had. HER2 is a protein that stimulates the growth of breast cancer cells. It can be found in your blood and urine. Sometimes it is referred to as a tumour marker. Tumor markers like…

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Writing the poem Ripening by guest author Sheila Templeton

Val Penny's Book Reviews

Thank you Val, for inviting me to write for your blog. In our discussion about what might be interesting for your readers, we came up with the idea that I might go through the steps of working on a poem. I’ve chosen my poem Ripening, because it won first prize in the McLellan Poetry Competition a few years back. The judge was Janet Paisley.

I started this poem in 2002, five years before sending it to the McLellan Poetry Competition and, for most of that time, the original poem had been left…to sheilamature, moulder? I don’t know! I felt very stuck with it and had given up…temporarily, as it turned out. Sometimes, I think it’s very good to put a poem away for a while. And in this case, I had no option, as it was going nowhere.

It had begun life as an exercise in a poetry workshop run by…

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Champagne Charlie’s, The Arches, 17 Villiers Street, London, England, WC2N 6NG

Val Penny's Hotel and Restaurant Reviews

Champagne Charlie’s, in London, England, is a lovely atmospheric and cosy cellar style bar.  It is part of the Davy’s group, offering wine by the glass, carafe or bottle on the ground floor. There is a wide variety of gins and whiskies too. The lovely restaurant with a wide menu is down stairs. It is a bit of a tardis and seems to go on for ever. The venue has easy access to many parts of London by tube, train and bus. It is near both Embankment and Charing Champagne-Charlies-ICross underground stations and a nine minute stroll from Waterloo across the Jubilee Bridge, tucked away at the Arches. It is unique amongst the dozens of eateries in the area. The exposed brick walls with no windows in the restaurant, as you are underground, does create an interesting atmosphere. However, it is not claustrophic. The clever use of aches and mirrors avoids that.

My daughter recommended…

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Fatal Last Words by Quentin Jardine

Val Penny's Book Reviews

I really enjoy the Bob Skinner series written by Quintin Jardine. Fatal Last Words was one of his new books that I discovered in a book exchange in a hotel while I was on holiday. I was thrilled. Quintin Jardine is one of my favourite Scottish 8954b78cb64eecd1a5c0170775c20fda_400x400authors. He was born in Motherwell, Lanarkshire, Scotland, and educated there and in Glasgow where he attended Glasgow University. He now writes crime fiction and is the author of two much-acclaimed and best-selling series of detective novels However, I have never got into his series where the protagonists are the Primaveras. I like his Bob Skinner novels and Fatal Last Words is the nineteenth book in this series.

It is August and the Edinburgh International Book Festival is in full swing. So it is a considerable embarrassment when one of Scotland’s most successful crime writers is found dead in the author tent. The victim’s phone…

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