An update on my status after the last CT scan. It’s not good.
So, yesterday Julie and I made the trip to the Portland VA Hospital for a three-month checkup. Wednesday was port flush and bloodwork, a visit with Dr. Lu, and the CT scan. We then met with Dr. Andreason on Thursday.
Dr. Lu mentioned that the bloodwork results had already come back and were perfect. This doesn’t mean much as, except for a single result during chemo (low platelets counts), all of my labs have never shown a problem. His physical exam showed no issues and everything was healing normally.
Julie and I love Dr. Andreason. She never sugar-coats it or tries to downplay the results. I have four new spots, one in my liver and three in my lungs. The cancer is back and metastisizing, though the spots are very small (less than 6mm).
After some discussion (we were both in a bit of shock, so not so many questions: I am sure we will have a ton at our next meeting) this is the summary: my cancer is no longer considered curative; this means any further actions taken are to extend my life and maintain as high a quality of life as possible during that extension.
With this, we scheduled another scan in three months. These spots are considered very small and believed to be not very aggressive at this time. After the next scan we will have a better idea of exactly how aggressive it is, and that will inform any future course of action Julie and I wish to take from there.
Surgery, unless the tumors do not grow and multiply, is off the table. There is a regimen of chemo available that may slow down the spread, therefore extending my life. However, this extension must be weighed with the impact the cocktail would have on me. This particular coctail will have bad side effects including the loss of all hair and the inability to keep food down or no hunger.
Time was discussed, and it is measured in years rather than months. However, she said it would probably only be three to five years.
Julie and I are still processing, and this obviously changes all of our plans for the future.