Friday, May 11, 2012
17. The Next Cancer Update
My surgeon, who always seems to deliver the bad news, had some consultations with other surgeons, and they started thinking maybe, since I'd had this infection beforehand, and since the tumor is so big and aggressive, that it might be a better idea to put in a colostomy ahead of time, before we start all the therapy.
So the brakes have been put on everything. I'm going to MD Anderson, which is apparently the top cancer center in the country, and happens to be in our backyard (Houston), and they're slotting us in relatively quickly. We're going there for a consult to find out what they want to do. We were hoping for Friday (that's tomorrow) but that was faster than they could move, so now we're hoping for Monday or Tuesday.
What can happen from here is many-fold. Could be we go down there, they do the MRI, tests, I talk to all their people (another surgeon, another radiologist, another oncologist) and they say "Go ahead with the plan" and we start a couple weeks later. That's the best case. It's also not what I'm particularly expecting.
They could also say "Put in the colostomy, wait a couple weeks to recover, then do the original plan." That's the second best-case, although I'm not thrilled with the idea of pooping into a bag. I mean, sure, on a dare or for a Klondike bar or something, but not on a regular basis. But y'know, whatever if it means we still get started soon.
They could also say "OK, we're going to do something completely different, and you're going to have to travel to Houston several times a week (or live here for 4-6 weeks) and do chemo, colostomy, surgery, all that stuff here."
But none of that gets done until the appointment is made, which is out of my hands, so I'm waiting for the phone call, which will hopefully come tomorrow. I know that in the long run, a delay of a few weeks isn't that big of a deal, and my original surgeon was quite clear that the tumor has been around for six months, maybe even a year, so the odds of a couple weeks making any difference in terms of it spreading are much, much lower than the odds of an infection or a blockage developing later that could really fuck things up.
But... I was all set to go. Psyched up and ready to start this treatment, get the ball rolling, and now we're back at what feels like first and ten again. So it's a little frustrating. But I've heard nothing but good about MD Anderson, and I know that, like everything else, this will fade into memory when and if we get the damn cancer cured.
If I seem a little grumpier lately, though, that's why. Don't worry, though, headspace still positive, still gonna beat this thing, etc. etc.