Update On My Husband’s Cancer Treatment – Not What We Expected

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By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

Garry goes in to have the bile duct stent removed tomorrow morning and we foresee no issues with that procedure. The PET scan, however, was another matter. Here are the results and they are the opposite of what we expected:

1. Bilateral pulmonary metastases are larger and more numerous since January 2020, consistent with disease progression.

2. Nonspecific patchy areas of hypermetabolism within the liver, more focal than expected. While they may be physiologic, consider MRI to evaluate for hepatic metastatic disease.

3. Linear uptake in the anal canal and in the perianal region. This is likely inflammatory, and there is a suspected blind-ending perianal fistula. Recurrent/residual malignancy is also possible but considered less likely.

What this means is that the cyberknife evidently got rid of one tumor but there seem to be others in the lungs. There is also a possibility it has spread to his liver. Because of pain in the anal area, there will also have to be major surgery to remove the tumor and finalize the procedure down there. None of the above is good news but Garry took it in stride. Much better than I did. I go from being incredibly angry at his doctors, to terrified and crying in private.

Friday, Garry had to have a COVID-19 test. He went one place for blood to be drawn and then had to wait in a car line to get swabbed. He was only allowed to have water that day. That evening, he had an aphasia episode, or what we call chemo brain. He could not find the right words to speak with which is similar to a stroke but not as serious. However, it was enough to terrify me. It only lasted half an hour or so. The doctors here said it was due to not getting enough electrolytes. However, Garry’s white blood and red blood cell counts have been low since the beginning of May and we were not told about that. His hemoglobin is low too. But the doctors won’t do an infusion of blood right now. They just said if it happens again to go to the ER. It’s infuriating.

Adding insult to injury, Aetna decided to claw back all payments to an anesthesiologist who was out of network and we got hit with another bill for 1k.

Garry is very tired, but his counts are beginning to rise. He will speak to the oncologist Monday before his next round of chemo. Looks like our fight is far from over and it was a shock because the doctors had said how great his numbers were and that he was in remission. Please pray for Garry — he needs it now more than ever.

I would ask that, if you can, please give whatever is possible. Garry’s GoFundMe account is here. You can also donate on PayPal. My email there is [email protected] or you can use the PayPal link on the upper right side of NoisyRoom.net to get there. If you would like to donate some other way, email me at [email protected] and I’ll send you instructions.

So many have given and are praying for my husband. I can’t thank you enough. I’m trying to stay strong during all this and my faith is sometimes all that keeps me going.

Also note, Spectrum (our Internet provider) is having severe issues, so I am on and offline for the last few days. That is the computer. not me and I will post as I can.

4 thoughts on “Update On My Husband’s Cancer Treatment – Not What We Expected

  1. Heart and prayers are with you and your beloved husband. (5 time cancer survivor over 40 years.) Cancer diagnosis can only be endured, when we realize…”God will heal me or take me home…and neither one of those are bad.” Faith has gotten you this far, keep that faith. Prayer is the most powerful medicine, stronger than anything man can produce. Bless you, your entire family and especially your dear husband as he endures this trial.
    The very best to you, as you wade through the pain and heartbreak of seeing one you love suffer. It is often harder on those who love the cancer patient, than the one going through the cancer. Those who loved me were willing to do anything to help me heal….my response was always, asking and thanking them for their prayers!

    God be with you

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