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Amanda returns

Amanda Rungis - Friday, June 01, 2018

I'm very excited to make an announcement that I didn't know when, or at times even if, I was going to be able to make.

I return to seeing patients this Monday, the 4th June.

The first month I'll have limited appointments 2 days a week. Please ring 43376000 or book online to check which days. Our family then leaves for Latvia and Germany for a couple of weeks. We're very much looking forward to the trip that we have been planning for over a year, especially after the events of the last 8 months. So, I'll be away from the 4th–20th July. I'll re-evaluate what days I see patients on my return.

My new accountant recently asked me what sort of brain tumour I had. I said a glioblastoma. He said, “the worst kind!” This in my experience leads to a story about a close family member or friend who had died of one. I nervously asked, “How do you know?”. He answered that his sister was a neurologist. I thought this was awesome. Because it was the first time the mention of glioblastoma didn’t lead to a conversation about how a loved one died from it. Call me an optimist, but I believe that was the universe telling me the stories will now be different.

There are things I know. There are things that I believe. There are things I don’t know.

I know that I had great surgery. I know I had great radiotherapy. I believe the tumour is gone. I don’t know whether it will return. I believe it won’t. I know I had brain swelling at Easter and thought I was going to die. I was so sick I asked my friend Cheryl to come from Seattle to visit me as soon as she could, so she could say goodbye. Alternatively, if I didn’t survive, I asked her to come support my husband through the funeral.

I believe the brain swelling was a side effect of the chemotherapy, so I've decided not to continue that treatment. Being a medical person, I did a risk vs benefit analysis, as I do for my patients. I believe surgery was high risk, high reward (I was able to walk unaided again). I believe radiotherapy was low risk, high reward. I believe chemotherapy, in my case, was high risk, low benefit. One of my oncologists, when I asked him why do the chemotherapy, said “In case there are any rogue cells left”. It didn't make sense to me as I believe the tumour is gone. And taking a highly toxic substance “just in case” didn’t seem wise.

So, my question is “How can I help you?” My departure was very sudden on Friday the 13th October. I'm aware that there are many patients who may feel like they have issues that they have been waiting for me to solve. I'm grateful for your loyalty and I look forward to seeing and serving you!


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