Well today started out great, unless you don’t like getting up early for no apparent reason. At least I thought I would be able to enjoy the beautiful sunrise. Too bad it was still two hours away at that point. But it was a big day with lots to do, so I had another spot of tea.
We started out the morning up in Tucson at the University of Arizona Cancer Center for my “Live Life Well With Crappy Diseases” 10:00 am presentation to their Brain Tumor support group. I didn’t bother to look at the address because I know where the Cancer Center is, I’ve been there recently investigating clinical trials with Dr. M. So we arrived a little early to set up but couldn’t find room #2920. When I inquired as to its whereabouts I was told their room numbers don’t go that high. Perhaps it’s at the other University of Arizona Cancer Center, they say. I say “THE OTHER”??? Fortunately it was only a few blocks away, unfortunately I went the wrong way. But we eventually got there, arriving fashionably late. All was forgiven as I was an absolutely brilliant presenter, as usual.
Then it was time to rush back to Green Valley for my 1:00 pm appointment with Dr. P. The primary purpose of this meeting was to review my first CT scans in 90 days. Although I feel great, especially now that my cough has been dealt with, you need to look under the covers to see what the evil tumors are doing and to evauluate the effectiveness of my oral chemo, Lonsurf.
Starting with my lungs, they found no new tumors, always a good sign. In my right lung, where I had radiation on one tumor near my airway, both of the reference tumors had shrunk. In the left lung one of the reference tumors was stable. Two other tumors which previously were separate, but adjacent, are now one ugly mass. However, the size of this combined mass is still about the same overall size as the two individual tumors. So I’d call that a mixed bag, but pretty much stable.
My liver, where they did the radioactive isotope drop in November, looks good. The tumor has shrunk and is showing signs of calcification. This is a normal result of Y-90 treatment and the tumor should continue to shrink and die over the next several months. My lymph nodes are stable. All of my liver and kidney functions are great. There was one spot in my GI tract that will need an MRI but might be nothing. CT scans only show so much.
The Lonsurf seems to still be a good “treading water” option for me, slowing the cancer growth and buying me some time. We are continuing to examine and apply for various clinical trials. I am still on the waiting list for two in Tucson and I recently applied for a trial in Scottsdale but was declined because I am a polio survivor. The trial director didn’t think it would be a problem, but the pharmaceutical company rejected me. If you want to boycott them, it is F.Hoffmam-LaRoche. This is the second trial for which I have been rejected. The first rejection was before I started Lonsurf last summer. They rejected me because I had not included oxaliplatin, a normal chemo drug, in my regimen because is causes neuropathy. Polio boy won’t recover from the neuropathy, so I excluded it. So they excluded me, over the objections of the clinical trial director. Ahhh, the moutain is pink…it’s time for a drink!
*I didn’t say it was hard to drive me there.
Now for some fun stuff. I recently discovered a company, pixels.com, which takes images and puts them on all sorts of fun merchandise. Perfect for Jimmy Art!! They do apparel (t-shirts to baby onesies), coffee mugs, phone cases, note cards, towels, bedding, prints and more. Some items, like the shirts, you can customize the size of the image and choose your background color. Pretty cool. Please check me out.www.jimmy-asbell.pixels.com