Well, here I am, sitting through my fourth round of infusions. Halfway through my originally planned 8 chemo sessions. I have a CT scan scheduled next week, on 8/26 and my oncologist is supposed to call me on 8/27 to go over the results. We’ll see which of these 3 things is happening:
- My cancer has stopped growing but there’s no reduction in size of the masses – this is a fine thing to see and we would consider treatment to be working since the cancer is not growing
- My tumors have reduced in size – this is the ideal response we’re looking for and the path towards beating this bullshit disease
- My cancer has grown/spread – this would suck and mean that none of my treatment is working
I did meet with my oncologist last Friday to go over some recent bloodwork and just check in overall. Good news is that my CEA (cancer proteins) numbers dropped back to pre-chemo levels after an initial surge. We still don’t really have an idea of how I’m responding to treatment and he still can’t give me a prognosis. Which is why I’m pretty anxious to get the new CT scan so we can see what’s happening with the cancer compared to the other CT scan taken when I was diagnosed.
But, in our discussion with the doctor, to try and understand my situation, we did receive some more clarification on what we’re dealing with. Based on the size and spread of my cancer, we’re needing about an 80% reduction in size in order to consider a conversation about surgery. The tumor in my colon is so large that during my colonoscopy, the doctor couldn’t get the probe/camera past it to look at it from the other side. The good news is that everything is still working and moving down there like it should. If that tumor were to grow or for any reason things were to stop working down there, it would require emergency surgery. We’re not anticipating that happening.
The other thing we talked about is my liver. I asked him to show me the original scan and explain it. There is a lot of cancer in my liver. A LOT. Many masses. The largest of which is on the left side of the liver, where a bunch of things connect. It’s about 10-11cm, or about 4 inches. That is big. Really big. Hence needing my cancer to reduce by such a high percentage to begin to consider surgery. It’s really not a great reality to be facing but I’m remaining hopeful that I’ll beat the numbers and be the exception.
We discussed some potential paths where this can go and how we would proceed but I’m going to refrain from sharing that right now, until after that next scan and we see what’s going on.
As always, thank you all for the continued love and support.