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Jay Lake
Date: 2009-07-22 15:04
Subject: [cancer] Cautious Optimism
Security: Public
Tags:calendula, california, cancer, health, portland
calendula_witch and I were at UCSF today to meet with a liver surgeon and an oncologist. We discussed the recent scan results with both doctors. In short, there is cause for cautious optimism.

Scan results indicate that the liver mass has not grown detectably in 60 days. At that growth rate, we can afford to be conservative about treatment.

However, the lung spot has grown from 5 mm to 7-8 mm. This is within the +/- 5 mm margin of error in the scanning process, so they are not too concerned. More to the point, no other lung spots were detected.

No lymph spots detected on this scan, which suggests the lymphatic issues from the May scan were a transient infection. (This was one possible theory at the time.)

The only discrepancy between the California and Oregon teams is that the read on my MRI by the Oregon radiologist was "indicative of metastatic disease" while the read on the same MRI data by the California radiologist was more benign. This may become significant in determining whether to stay the current course on chemo or carry forward with a "watch and wait" strategy.

The California team recommended no treatment at this time, with CT and PET scanning in October, after a three month wait, to recheck growth in liver and lungs. I am not assuming chemo is off for now until I see my Oregon oncologist next week and hear her take, but the stability of the liver mass seems encouraging.

Knowing that it's not growing like wildfire inside of me eases my mind considerably. Knowing that the lung spot is isolated and not part of a widespread pattern eases my mind considerably. We'll see what happens next week. I'm not allowing myself to be too buoyed by this yet, but it's the first time since May that the medical news has gotten better. If this trend holds up next week, I'll be a very happy boy.

Originally published at jlake.com.

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Greg van Eekhout
User: gregvaneekhout
Date: 2009-07-22 23:07 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
That's encouraging news. As always, I'll continue to hope for the very best possible outcomes. Keep rockin', dude.
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User: madrobins
Date: 2009-07-22 23:10 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Totally uncautious Hooray. Of course, the conservative-treatment option means a certain amount of stress about something growing, albeit slowly. But...no lymph spots, no other lung spots, and no apparent growth on the liver spot is good news.

As always, the good wishes fairy is working overtime here.
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User: karenjunker
Date: 2009-07-22 23:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Whew! Thanks for keeping us posted. I've been hitting the refresh button every few minutes while waiting for the news. May the optimism continue!
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User: anghara
Date: 2009-07-22 23:19 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
This post makes me happy. I'm glad that the Universe is channeling some good news your way.
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User: threeoutside
Date: 2009-07-22 23:21 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Woo hoo! We'll keep beamin' those good health waves atcha!

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User: martianmooncrab
Date: 2009-07-22 23:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
thats very positive news... hope it continues.
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Jim C. Hines
User: jimhines
Date: 2009-07-22 23:24 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Very glad to hear you had some good news, finally. Hoping the trend continues!
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User: joycemocha
Date: 2009-07-22 23:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Very good news. It may be a metastasis, but it's a slow process, not a fast process. This is good.
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User: aitchellsee
Date: 2009-07-22 23:29 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Cause for optimism! Yay!

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Kenneth Mark Hoover
User: kmarkhoover
Date: 2009-07-22 23:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
that is good news and I hope the trend continues
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User: selfavowedgeek
Date: 2009-07-22 23:52 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Then here's a w00t for cautious optimism!
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User: melissajm
Date: 2009-07-22 23:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Cautious hooray! May there be much more good news to come.
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Kristine Smith
User: kristine_smith
Date: 2009-07-23 00:00 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
May the good news continue!
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Michael Curry: alton
User: mcurry
Date: 2009-07-23 00:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
It is indeed great to see the news trend in the better direction.
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User: jackwilliambell
Date: 2009-07-23 00:49 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
One word: Rollercoaster.

(Or is that one word? The spell checker doesn't think so :-/ )
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User: beard5
Date: 2009-07-23 00:59 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Great news! I'll keep sending out positive thoughts in your general direction.
Beard5(Very infrequent poster, but avid reader of "link salad")
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Erin Cashier
User: therinth
Date: 2009-07-23 01:01 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
That is freaking awesome news Jay. Fan-fucking-tastic!
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User: jess_ka
Date: 2009-07-23 01:03 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yay! Keeping good thoughts, Jay!
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User: farmgirl1146
Date: 2009-07-23 01:26 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Encouraging news, indeed. Relax and enjoy. You accomplished much in drafting your new book, and I hope that both of these things make you very happy. Happiness is a good curative.
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User: fledgist
Date: 2009-07-23 01:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
May the good news continue for you, Jay.
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miki garrison: disco snake
User: mikigarrison
Date: 2009-07-23 01:53 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:disco snake
Wowza, that makes for a seriously good exhale. Regardless of what your oregon docs decide regarding treatment, the lack of growth is a HUGE happy. :D

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Abbie Hilton: Tell me a story
User: fenrah
Date: 2009-07-23 02:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Tell me a story
I'm really happy for you! I've been watching your blog, feeling awful about the stuff you're going through. Good news is good.
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scarlettina: Fantastic!
User: scarlettina
Date: 2009-07-23 02:57 (UTC)
Subject: One word
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User: csinman
Date: 2009-07-23 03:50 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yay! I am freaking out slightly less. :)
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User: kzmiller
Date: 2009-07-23 04:23 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Wild squee!

Okay, I know I should be more cautious. I'll try again.

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The Green Knight: Courage
User: green_knight
Date: 2009-07-23 08:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hope the encouraging trend continues.
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Kari Sperring
User: la_marquise_de_
Date: 2009-07-23 10:29 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I am so pleased for you. May the optimism flourish, grow and be justified in huge quantities.
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Twilight: Smile
User: twilight2000
Date: 2009-07-23 15:48 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Nice to see the news trend the other way :>. Still thinking good thots!

Bright Blessings on you, friend ;>
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