Just a quick update here.

Mathew’s surgery is postponed until the end of November at the earliest.

Mathew had an MRI and CT scan of his lumbar area last Thursday and after consulting with his peers, the surgeon decided to change the approach to surgery. Rather than the one anterior incision (side approach) it was changed to the enbloc resection. He also wants spinal cord monitoring going on during the surgery and the person behind that is a specialist from Halifax. She only comes to the Saint John Regional a couple of times a year with the next visit scheduled for the end of November.

We discovered that Thursday’s tests did not include a body CT scan in keeping with Mathew’s 3 month checkup. There isn’t any remote chance that surgery will go ahead without first checking to make sure the cancer hasn’t returned. It isn’t in the lumbar area (which was chemo-treated and radiated) but no where else was checked. So, with a call in to the Oncologist, a full CT scan should be scheduled. When, I’m not sure at this point.

I also received clarification on recovery time for Mathew and that is a serious downer. Without any complications, the hospital stay after surgery is routinely about a week. The recovery time at home is 6-9 months. That is the estimated time until Mathew is once again self-independent where he can stay at home by himself for a day. Wonderful. Here I was thinking 3, maybe 4 months.

This is a lot to plan and think about. The surgeon assures us there is no rush on Matt’s surgery so it sounds like the spinal area is stable. Dr. Abraham will have to cut out some muscle and bone (vertebrae) to remove what’s left of the tumour/scar tissue then build a cage around the compromised vertebrae and put in some bone from a human bone bank.

Sometimes I feel like communication from these brilliant, top of their field medical professions gets jumbled. As if we are on two different planets and vital information gets lost between the two worlds. We receive tips and added bonus info by accident after the fact, or by talking about other things… and then some little tidbit gets dropped in casually along the way. We feel like we are always scrambling to keep up with what the specialists are thinking and racing to understand what is going on.

So, nothing more until we gather more information and prepare for Mathew’s recovery. We just left the last 9 month recovery time during chemo treatment and that was no picnic. The thought of another 6-9 months of total dependency…well, the mere thought tires me out right now. Another month to prepare is just what this Mother ordered!

So no three month scan news to report at this time.

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