Saturday, June 22, 2013

Results 6/21/13

I had my petscan yesterday to determine where we are at with treatment. This is the first petscan I've had since December, which was pre-treatment.

The good news - my tumors continue to shrink. The main tumor has reduced from 4 cm to 1.3 x 1.1 since December. One tumor has remained unchanged though. We are still blessed for the continued improvement.

However, there is persistent hypermetabolic neoplastic disease at the site of the main tumor. This indicates the cancer is still very active.  I've had a cold for a few days and there was inflammation in another node under my right arm but it's believed to be from the cold.

There is something I want all of you to know about the type of lung cancer I have, in case I haven't explained it before...

An EGFR mutation is an irreversible cell mutation that has become a normal part of my DNA. My body does not recognize it as bad, so the immune system does not fight it.  Therefore, the bad cells keep multiplying. Tarceva, the medication I take daily, inhibits these bad cells from multiplying. For how long? We don't know. Cancer is smart, and it can find a way around this inhibitor. If and when that happens, we try something else.

The fact is, this mutation is not going away. There is no cure. We are just trying to stop it from getting worse. Even if the Tarceva leads to "no evidence of disease", I will continue taking it for the rest of my life.   If/when it quits working, the cancer will return.

We need a cure. I'm blessed to have this pill that will help extend my life, but without a cure for the mutation, it just prolongs the inevitable.

I understand, it is inevitable that we will all die. It could be in a car accident, plane crash, instantaneously. Or, you could know its coming. I am reminded everyday with a pill. Which would you pick if you had a choice?

I know I'm usually upbeat, but this is how I feel at the moment and expressing my feelings is what this blog is all about. Documenting the journey, keeping my faith.

That being said, I am thankful for the time I have and will continue to have. Some days are just harder than others. It could be worse for me, so sometimes I feel selfish even thinking this way.

Thank you all for your continuous prayers and support.  They are helping so much.  Please continue to pray for Gretchen, Marjorie, Tim, and Reggie.  They each are fighting their own different battles.

I spent some time with Reggie yesterday.  He's lost a lot of weight and is very tired.  He won't know how well the radiation is working until it's over.   He hasn't been working very much so Brad began a fundraiser site for him, to help with medical bills and to compensate for missed work, just click here to go to his site:  Reggie's Fundraiser

God has a plan for all of us, even though it may not make sense now. I continue to Hope for that cure, you can't have Faith without Hope!

Jeremiah 29:11
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."