Today marked the first step down the latest road in dad's life. We met with his radiologist, Dr. Haley, who definitely could be Neil Patrick Harris' doppelganger from the Doogie Howser days.
Before we begin, I wanted to share the following 3 images I received after my last blog post. These images are from his January, April, and June scans of 2018. I have highlighted in red the area where is tumor used to be, and placed arrow(s) in yellow to point at the tumor(s). It becomes very telling in the June scan that the cancer has returned. Please note, the tumor will be the white mass.
As you can clearly see now... it's BAAAAAAACK! Now, back to today's appointment.
Dr. Haley did a great job talking us through the possibilities of radiation. He did note that we are in uncommon territory for dad's type of cancer. It is not overly common for a glioblastoma multiforme patient to have a second round of radiation multiple years after the first. Because of this they are unable to give us accurate numbers for chances of success or for side effects.
Regardless, he felt confident that we could do targeted radiation on the two growths. Dad was adamant to get started asap with this information.
Following today's appointment, dad had a CT Scan to verify everything was okay.
Next steps are to have an MRI tomorrow (July 3rd) to have a better idea where the growths are at and if the original plan is still plausible. The one risk is one of the growths might be too close to dad's right eye, if so he'd have to do 5 treatments rather than 1 treatment, but he felt confident this wasn't the case.
As long as the results look good with the MRI, dad will undergo the targeted radiation on Wednesday, July 11th.
As for side effects, he shouldn't feel as tired or off as the first time around (back in 2014), but may notice a slight difference in energy levels. Also, there is a small chance for scar tissue, seizures, vision issues, or other permanent functional issues from the treatment. With the low level of risk, it was decided it was worth the shot.
Longer term, dad will still plan to meet with the Oncologist (I call her the chemo doc) on July 23rd.
One side note that I found interesting, for the first time in the 4 years we've been doing this, they had Protocel listed as a supplement that dad was taking, even asking if he was still taking it. We haven't brought that up in 3 years so someone must have looked back in past notes and added that when we switched neurologists.
In my last article, I brushed on the fact that my wife Becca was treating my dad using a methodology called NAET. He is moving forward with one treatment every 2 to 3 days. I'm sure you are wondering what the heck this is, once we get her website up, I will post a link so you can explore on your own. You may continue to see me refer to this occasionally in future blog posts. Also, these treatments have absolutely no interference with what the docs are recommending and are completely safe for him to be doing in tandem.
We will keep fighting the fight, holding our heads high, and staying positive. Cancer is such a negative thing in the reality of life, so let's not dwell on it like it is. Cancer SUCKS, but it has taught us to enjoy more moments, hug more, laugh more, love more, talk more, and ultimately spend more time with the people we care about.
Whether it's cancer or something else, death can come when we least suspect it. So share your LOVE with everyone around you, and spend quality time with those that matter, and if you've made a wrong with someone, don't wait for tomorrow to make it right, now is the best time to have a conversation with those you care about.