My Cancer Journey - Week 21

The oncologist is very pleased with the results of the cat scan.  The primary tumour on my tongue has been eradicated.  The two lymph nodes affected are dramatically reduced in size.  Everything about my recovery is way ahead of the norm.  There’s the good news.  The one concern he has is that the lymph nodes are larger than he would like them to be following treatment. As a result, he has ordered another scan to make sure that no cancer remains.  It is a special machine called a pet scan.  I will have to travel to Vancouver to get it at the Vancouver Cancer Clinic.  

The oncologist emphasized how positive he is about everything.  He scoped my throat again and observed no evidence of cancer.  With his hands and fingers he felt all through my mouth and down both sides of my neck.  He said he could not feel anything that would cause him to question.  Still he wants to be sure and for that I have to be grateful.  So once the appointment is set, road trip to the coast.  After the results of the pet scan are known, I will have a follow up with the oncologist within the next three months.  In the shorter term, my next appointment is dental, at the end of July.  The pet scan is a deeper look at the tissue than either a cat scan or an MRI.  It doesn’t replace them, but provides more information.

With my recovery, I have waited months for warm weather.  It arrives and knocks me on my butt.  What little energy I have was drained quickly.  The simplest of outdoor tasks sent me to my water bottle in minutes.  I wasn’t a happy camper for a few days.  Spent most of it inside in the air conditioning.

I have discovered that not only is it the selection of foods I am able to process but how I take them in.  Smaller bites, chew slowly, use water as a saliva substitute.  Amazing what you can accomplish when you follow those simple directions.  I am still having two of Terrie’s calorie cocktails per day, no matter what solids I eat.  I must be getting what I need because my weight has been exactly the same for 7+ weeks.  I am down about 18 pounds from the weight I was prior to treatments.  When you consider what other patients with the same treatment regime have lost, I’ve done extremely well.

The end of this stage of my journey is that I am doing great.  I won’t be sending out updates until after the results of the pet scan are known.  The oncologist thought it may take up top six weeks to get an appointment.  Have a great summer.  I will be reporting in around the beginning of September.  As always your prayers and positive thoughts are most appreciated.