Thursday, November 20, 2008

oncologist appointment

We went today for JD's appointment with the oncologist to discuss his treatment plan. I think overall, we're all breathing a little easier. I accidently left my notebook with the notes from the appointment and the treatment plan and pathology report in Mom's car, so you just get the basics. :) Go to for the details.

Anyway- contrary to what we were initially told, chemo will NOT be 5 days in a row, every 2 to 3 weeks. Instead, it will be ONE day every two weeks. The treatment will last about 5 hours, as they will be giving him two different chemo drugs, anti-nausea medicine and ... fluids? i think. They plan on doing this for 4-6 months, and at the end of that time period, will re-evaluate.

The medicines he will be being given are very strong and typically used to treat a very agressive form of brain cancer... HOWEVER- the side effects don't seem to be as severe as some chemotherapys' are. We just don't know exactly how he'll respond to it (but who will be surprised if he breezes through it? Certainly not me!), but it sounded like it could be 2-3 bad days (meaning nausea, vomiting, diarrhea) for every treatment, which again is once every two weeks. They will do an MRI in one month, which will have been 6 weeks out from his surgery and after 2 doses of the chemo.

The chemo, like I said, is usually used on a very aggressive type of cancer. JD's tumor is very rare, and the cases of it reoccurring like JD's has done, even more so. It DID end up still being PXA, but with anaplasia... which means it has malignant tendancies. While the cells were initially dividing at a 4% rate, they now divide at a 30% rate. Simply put- what used to take 6 months to grow, now grows in 1.2 months. Thus the reason for the quick surgery and quick start on chemotherapy. In using the medicines that they have chosen for chemotherapy, they are treating JD very aggressively and proactively, which we are so thankful for!

We have several things playing on our side. One, there is currently no tumor in JD's brain... just cells. This is much easier to treat than a large mass. Two, JD has never had chemotherapy before, and is over 2.5 years out from radiation. The doctor said something about the tumor cells 'getting smart' and morphing with the chemo or something like that. His 'cells' haven't been exposed to chemo yet. And we're hitting them early with the hard stuff. Three, JD is young and in very good health. And lastly, we serve a big God, and we have lots and lots of people fighting on JD's behalf.

Again, our family thanks you for all your support. If I could express how the love extended has helped lighten the load, I would. But just know, your kind words, prayers, meals, bracelet-wearing, etc. is very deep reaching. You've helped us walk through a very difficult thing and we are so, so grateful. But please- KEEP PRAYING!! :)

1 comment:

  1. You know, after I wrote that post yesterday I went home last night and got out some of my old journals. I have one from college entirely written in spanish! Can you believe that? I even said out loud as I was reading it, "who wrote this?". Luckily I can still read it. :) I surprised myself. Anyway, seeing them reminded me how much I loved writing in them and I've been inspired to start up again. I just have to go out and buy a new one... and a fun gel pen of course. :)
    Yes, for Christmas we are prob going to get Elijah a wagon. He has a small one and loves it, plus he's crazy about anything with wheels. He also loves balls so we'll prob get him a few of those and maybe more books. You can never have too many books at our house.
    Anyway, now I'm rambling too. ha ha.
    Have a great weekend!


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