Finally, an Update

June 2nd, 2006 at at 5:42 pm by Brian

Yes, I’m still alive. Wouldn’t that’ve been just my luck, to write a post about how I wasn’t going to give up, then die shortly after?

Anyways, I’ve been under radio silence until I got all of the news straight as to what’s going to be happening next. Plus, we had an AWESOME thunderstorm here last night and I had to shut everything down. This was like West Texas style thunder mixed with rain forest style downpours. Much cheering and supportive yelling was coming from the Whitney Street porch.

Back to the cancer thing. I saw Dr. Detterbeck, chief of thoracic oncology, yesterday morning. Seemed to be a pretty nice guy. He has looked at all of my various exams and originally felt that what was lighting up could be a thymoma rather than Hodgkin’s. Since my itching has come back, he replied “Okay, maybe it’s Hodgkin’s then.” Basically, we won’t know until my thymus is out and ground into a fine paste. Due to the possibility of a thymoma and the fact that this sucker just keeps lighting up on the PET scan, he’s going to take out the entire thymus gland. Otherwise, we could take out a piece, discover it’s a thymoma, then have to go back in and remove it. Since it’s not a necessary organ, it’s best to just remove it all.

The procedure itself is done thorascopically. He’ll make three incisions on the right side of my chest between ribs. In those incisions will go a camera, a cutting thing and a grabbing thing. Sorry to use complex medical terminology here, but I don’t know what you laypeople would call them. I’ll be under general anaesthesia, so they’ll keep me for a little while afterwards to make sure I handled being knocked out okay, as well as make sure I’m not in too much pain.

He’s new to my case, so he doesn’t know I’m a badass.

So they’ll hang on to me until they see I’m handling the pain okay, then they’ll send me home. All of this will be happening on the fourteenth of June. I’ll have to go in at some point before that to get my pre-surgical checkout and I’m going in Monday morning (the fifth) for a chest CT. The Beckster said I should be back to “normal” for sure after about two weeks, at which point he told SuperCoop it would be okay to go ahead with the high dose chemo/SCT.

What does it all mean? Well, the timing of things is still working in our favor, as our closing on the new house is next week. The surgery will be happening almost a week after that. I won’t have the SCT stuff for a couple of weeks after that, so I’ll be firmly ensonced in the new house by that point. Pllus, it means I’ll have a little over a MONTH before I have to do any more chemo. Sweet! I think this will be the longest break in chemo I’ve had since this all started over a year ago.

I’m going to try to go back to work a little bit next week, though the CT scan’s going to throw things a little out of whack. Plus, I’m still fatigued pretty easily, though I’ve been doing better with each passing day. I’ll probably do some half days or something until I’m sure I can make it. Today I had to go to Wallingford to get our insurance and electricity settled for the new house, then I stopped by Lowe’s to look for some stuff to clean the jacuzzi tub with (since that needs to be available IMMEDIATELY). Then I came home and slept for a bit. Three errands and I’m spent. Woof.

One Response to “Finally, an Update”

  1. Ken Smith Says:

    Hey Brian,

    Just wanted to drop you note. I was reading your post and just felt I needed to say “hang tough”. I’ll keep you in my thoughts and prayers. As you well know, thi cancer s@#t really tries to mess with your head. One of the best things I found was blogging. Keep it going and kick some ass !

    Ken