Yesterday I officially received the results of my last CT Scan. I say officially because, unintentionally, one of Dr. Pishvaian’s nurse practitioners had already let the cat out of the bag the day before. Amy from Dr. P’s office at Medstar Montgomery called me Monday afternoon wanting to discuss my Folfox treatments. Folfox is a combination of the chemotherapy drugs and is what I was first started on back in 2013. To say I was a little confused by her question was an understatement and was one heck of a way to find out the scan results weren’t ‘so better’. After getting Amy to back up and realize I had no idea what she was talking about I could hear in her voice the ‘click’ of recognizing she’d shared with me something she shouldn’t have. Apparently there had been a number of emails going back and forth between Dr. P’s team at Georgetown and with Dr. P. who happens to be on vacation with his family in Italy. Given my results, the discussion being had was whether I should or even could continue on the immunotherapy trial or should start chemo treatments. Needless to say I was left a bit numb after getting off the phone.
So, yesterday I went in knowing things weren’t so hot but not knowing the extent. Thank God for Eunice. Eunice is a young lady who is still going through some phase of her nursing studies and is interning with Dr. P. She is a delightful breath of fresh air and never fails to make me smile. Eunice has an incredibly loving and empathetic demeanor that I so needed yesterday. In talking with her, I got her to fill me on everything they had found. The tumor in the lower lobe of my left lung has increased in size by 1cm in both width and length. Not a huge increase but an increase none the less which brings to question whether the current treatment is effective. The other thing they found is a pleural effusion (fluid in the lining) of the left lung. At least this explains the shortness of breath I’ve been experiencing recently.
I then met with Dr. Lintz(?) who was filling in for Dr. P. She was fairly straight forward that they (the oncology team) didn’t think the immunotherapy treatment was working and that I needed to go to chemo. I explained to her my last conversation with Dr. P. was I would have the treatment I’d come in for; Dr. P. and I would meet to discuss what ever changes I needed to make after he returned from vacation. She was fine with that course of action and because my blood work came back OK, signed off on my paper work.
It was bitter sweet going back up to 5 North for my treatment as I wondered if I’d be coming back or going to Medstar Montgomery for chemo treatments. I talked with Mercedes a couple of visits back (she is the head nurse for Infusion Services (5 North)) and shared with her my stained glass hobby. She was very excited about it and jokingly told me I could always make her something for the new house her and her husband had just finished building. Given the days results I was glad I’d finished the pieces I’d made for her and my usual nurse, Kim.
So what’s next? I’ll be meeting Dr. Pishvaian next week on the 20th and will find out then. Your prayers and well wishes for peace of mind until then are greatly needed and always appreciated. 🙂