Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The journey continues...

Matthew had an ultrasound today to clarify what showed on Friday's scan as a possible blood clot. The ultrasound showed that there is no blood clot in his inferior vena cava nor is there any restriction there. Whew!! This is really good news because he will not have to be on blood thinner meds anymore and the risk has been eliminated! Praise the Lord!

We also received the results from the scan which showed that the chemo treatment Matthew has been on for over a year has stopped working so he will not be taking it anymore. The cancer has begun to grow rather than stay stable. We are still SO thankful for, at first, the reduction & then, the stability it has given Matthew for almost 15 months!

Our doctor will be contacting our New York doctor to start the process of Matthew's participation in the "protocol" or "clinical trial" at Sloan-Kettering. We don't know yet when that will begin or the steps that will need to be taken to get there. Our son, Ian, has also done much research and has found several options for us to consider as well. We are fervently praying for strength, courage, and God's guidance as we enter this next step of our journey.

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth gives way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear." (from Psalm 46)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

4 day work week for Matthew

Matthew was able to take his chemo treatments last week - Tues, Wed, Thurs & Fri & got his shot on Sat. He didn't have to go back yesterday for a 5th treatment which was good. He did have a pretty tough weekend though but is doing a bit better now.

His next scan is this Friday (Sept 18) at 1 pm. We'll receive the results when we see the doctor next Wed (Sept 23). I'll update you at that time.

Our doctor here (Dr. Dobbs) had a conversation with our doctor in New York (Dr. Wexler). There is a clinical trial in process at Sloan Kettering with possibilities for Matthew for the future if the current treatment starts waning. The longer a person is on a treatment, the more the cancer cells build resistance to the it which is why Matthew's current treatment doesn't reduce the cancer anymore like it did for the first 6 months. It is now keeping it stable. The scan Friday will give us a clearer picture as to whether it is still, in fact, keeping the cancer stable.

Thank you for your continued prayer, love and support.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Take your flexibility pill!

All-righty-then!  Do you remember the entry yesterday that gave you the "update" on Matthew's current schedule?  Well, forget it all. Ha!

We did, in fact, go to the scheduled chemo appt to begin the week of chemo yesterday.  They always take blood levels on the first day - routine.  What we didn't expect was that anything would be abnormal.  Matthew's platelets were low - just 96 - not bad - they treat at 100.  But... his platelets had been 160 the last time and this was a bit of a nosedive.  Plus he was getting all three chemo drugs on that day.  So, the doctor said, "No."  

So, here's the current schedule (don't put it in ink - use your pencil!):  Chemo begins next Tuesday (because of Labor Day), will go through Friday.
Then, we'll return on the following Monday to finish with a shot on Tuesday.  This will be a first to split it up like this.  We'll see.

The scan has been rescheduled for Sept 18.  We'll see the doctor the following Wednesday (Sept 23) for results.

After re-scheduling everything, Matthew & I took off for lunch.  We ate outside at Silver Spoon.  The weather was great, breeze delightful!  We talked and relaxed for quite some time.  (We also ate!)  There is a wild bird store next door so we watched tons of birds coming and going to their feeder and landing in bushes nearby.  What great entertainment!!  

After lunch, we were off to the Fresh Market to get fresh fruits and veggies to juice as well as some fresh fish.  After "juicing" later on, Matthew and friends went to Monday night cards.  

So, Matthew is looking forward to another week of feeling good.  We're looking forward to seeing a couple of movies, the UT game on Saturday, and Labor Day all without chemo side effects.  There are advantages if you look for them!  

The weather has felt a "wee bit" like fall the last 2 mornings - mmmm - preview of good weather to come!  
God bless each and every one of you!