Yesterday Julie and I spent the entire day at the Portland VA. A surgical consult and three imaging scans later …
There are more than two spots in my liver — about five. Three of which are assumed to be benign cysts. However, Julie and I made it clear, that benign or not, if feasible (you can get to the location), remove them. We don’t want anything believed to be benign turning malevolent later (as the first two found in the very first scan did).
Because of my general good health, my age, and how well I came through the previous two surgeries, I am a good candidate. No definite decision on whether surgery will be done or not, as the results of the imaging later in the day will give the surgical team and tumor board what they need to make a decision and a plan. We were assured though, if surgery is a go it would be before the end of the year, probably at the end of November first of December. We should know next week.
Sadly, the liver surgery is much more than “using a melon-baller and scooping out the tumors.” Depending upon the extent, they may even have to lay open the right side of my abdomen to get to what they need to get to. A more extensive surgery than either of the previous two.
The remainder of the day was spent getting all manner of imaging done:
- a PET scan with radio-isotope laced sugar (which kind of torqued me as I am sure it spiked my blood sugar a bit; I am just hoping it didn’t take me out of ketosis);
- an MRI of my liver, again part of it requiring an injection of contrast;
- and finally, we finish the picture taking with a CT scan — yes, even more contrast injected (the kind that makes you think you might have peed your pants), but only after drinking something 45 minutes before the procedure that didn’t taste too pleasant (might have just been the water though (I am kind of spoiled with the excellent quality of the water from our well at home)), but also had a hint of sweet — yet more sugar, and probably just to make it taste better.
Thankfully, I have a port. No IV needed, just stopped in the outpatient medical clinic and got my port accessed, and all three imaging labs were able to use that.
Next appointment is Wed Nov 14th. We will go over the scans with the oncologist and discuss what the schedule and content of this next round of chemotherapy will look like. Before that time I expect we may have already heard from the surgical team.