Cancer patients don’t fare well when they’re running without a plan. I’m running. And, at this moment, there is no plan. I have a new renal cell cancer metastasis in my spine at L-2. This is the worst possible place for a new metastasis, because it is likely that I have maxed out the amount of radiation I can have at that place on my spine. After all, my middle initial is M., which surely must stand for Murphy, as in Murphy’s Law: “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, and at the worst possible time.”
Dr. Pippas has scheduled a nuclear bone scan which will be done this Friday. It will show whether there are any other bone metastases in my body. This coming Tuesday, March 14, I will have a CT scan of the chest, abdomen and pelvis with contrast to determine if there are any soft tissue mets anywhere.
Once these files are in hand, we’ll meet with Dr. Pippas on Wednesday of next week to discuss options. In addition to Dr. Pippas’ input, one of our angels has arranged to have my files reviewed by some world-class renal cell cancer physicians both in Europe and around the United States to see what they deem is the appropriate next steps for us to take. We’ll take all this information, along with our conference with Dr. Pippas and Jill and I will make decisions about what is next.
Right now, there are way more questions than answers. We intend to flip that around just as soon as is humanly possible. Primary RCC tumors can grow at about a centimeter per year. Metastatic disease can grow at the rate of a centimeter per month! There is not much room for error and NO TIME to screw around making a decision. We’ve got to make the perfect call, and put a plan in place right now.
Jill and I just got back in the office from a long walk through downtown Columbus. Collecting our thoughts, expressing our love and commitment to each other, even in the face of fear and anxiety about what lies ahead. On this day, International Women’s Day, I am so grateful to be bathed in the love of an incredible spouse, a wonderful mother-in-law and a lion of a mother.
We expect some rough days ahead and I’m asking in advance for your prayers and supplications on our behalf. Our sons are in our foxhole along with a solid team of medical professionals and an army of thousands of supporters and prayer partners. With all this, we surely can’t lose this battle now. If you’ve been a regular reader of this blog, you know that increased fear equals increased blogs posts. I invite you to come along. This blog is as real as it gets when it comes to kidney cancer. I’ll try to stay up to date with posts about what is going on. This is the best way for us to communicate with friends near and far.