Once again, my posts are a little slow in the updating. There are two main reasons for this, both of which don’t involve work for a change.
Two weeks ago, I had a CT scan to see where things are at. The scan was one of the more significant scans I have had (which was the 16th in 4 years) because it’s job was to tell us whether or not the new disease is responding to chemotherapy. The short answer to this is yes, it is.
The liver metastasis has gone from 2.3cm to 1.3cm, the possible involved retroperitoneal lymph node has gone from 7mm to 11mm, and the mesenteric metastasis that showed up on the previous PET doesn’t get a mention in this scan. The first point of note here is that there is NO NEW DISEASE. This is important, because it means the cancer is responding to treatment. There were broadly speaking, two main categories I was going to fall into here, one was widespread metastasis, the other is stable disease. Fortunately, we have fallen into the latter. The second point, is that it is important not to read too much into the 1cm shrinkage of the liver met. The reason for this is that liver mets tend to be the most responsive to chemo of all other sites, shrinkage does not mean we are heading for a cure, it means the disease is not progressing. But disease not progressing is a good thing. It means I’m knocking on the door of a longer life expectancy (hopefully measured in 1-2 years) rather than a shorter one measured in 6-12 months.
So that is great news, and lieu of that, we bought a house. This has been one of the distractions of the past week.
The second great distraction is the fact that this update has an international flavour, and comes to you direct from Rome, Italy. We have just started our three exploration of pasta, pizza, culture and history.
I shall leave you with a taste of our adventure.
The most recent round of chemo was exponentially better than what is now colloquially known as ’round 46 of death’. I took my meds as per plan, and the vomiting stopped. I still had nausea, but, I have long since resigned myself to the fact that I always will. The main thing is that it was greatly reduced and there was a lot less time spent over the toilet bowl.
In the mean time, I have now started my ED rotation at Auckland hospital, which has been a lot of fun. It has been some nice variation from what I have been doing previously, and stretching my experience out a bit.
There isn’t too much new to report at the moment, so I shall leave you with a photo I took recently in the spring time rain.