Thank you for waiting patiently to hear about Mathew’s test results.
The results are uncertain…. wouldn’t you know it ~ not black and white but grey.
Here is what we know:
1. The tumour in Mathew’s back has not changed since December. It is unknown if that means it is dead or if it still might be alive. The normal dose of radiation to treat Ewing’s Sarcoma would be 65-70 Gy however the Radiation Oncologist could only give Mathew 45 Gy in total. According to her, Sarcoma is resistant to radiation.
2. There is a new 3 mm nodule or “spot” in Mathew’s left lung that wasn’t there in December. It could be scar tissue from an infection or it could be cancer. Everyone is keeping an eye on it.
3. Mathew had multiple very small nodules in his lungs back in August. Those nodules had disappeared in December’s CT scan. The conclusion is they were cancer because they would not have responded to treatment otherwise.
So, now what?
Well, we wait.
First Mathew will finish his last two treatments. Approximately 4 weeks after his last treatment a PET scan will be done. If either of those two spots glow then they are cancer. If anything else pops up and glows….well, you get the picture. If nothing glows then the status quo will be maintained while a watch-and-see period begins. Dr. Naz told us that so long as Mathew’s spine is stable then no surgery would happen.
If however, the tumour in his back (next to his spine) lights up then the surgeon will be consulted about the operation to remove the tumour.
Definitely grey results. It is so frustrating not knowing…but maybe not wanting to know. Our hope is that the remaining tumour in his back is actually scar tissue from a dead tumour and the nodule in his lung is from an infection that is gone.
In other news, Mathew is off of morphine for the first time since last summer. Hooray! It took over a week to wean him down from 15 mg slow release to the 5 mg quick release and then spread out the time between giving him the medicine. He hasn’t had any morphine for a week now and there are no signs of that horrible pain he had. THAT is progress! As the Oncologist said, Mathew is in a much better place than when he started treatment, so even if there hasn’t been a change since December there was still a dramatic difference in those first few months.
Mathew’s blood work today came back with a platelet count of 13, so the hospital called him in immediately for a platelet transfusion. He is going back to the hospital tomorrow morning for more blood tests and possibly a blood transfusion since his hemoglobin was 81 (and a transfusion is given when the hemoglobin goes below 80). His immune system is non-existent right now so no visitors until his white cell counts come up! With such low counts Mathew is feeling like crap and is mostly sleeping.
If the last two chemo treatments finish by the end of May then the PET scan will happen at the end of June. We will have the findings of that by the end of July. A year from when the tumour was first “discovered” on the MRI last July 19th. We will all breathe a sigh of relief if that PET scan doesn’t light up. No lighting up!
You hear me,
NO! LIGHTING! UP!