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Showing posts from September, 2004


Saturday, September 25, 2004 3:03 PM CDT


Well, everyone says hang in there, and I'm trying, but not doing a very good job.

Zach is happy not to have to have surgery. His pain is responding to the meds, but maybe a little too well, because he overdoes it and we all pay the price in a few hours. Like last night he went to the WaHi game. big mistake. He was in agony later on. He's frustrated, and I'm exhausted. He can't do anything on his own, including bathe, go to the bathroom, eat, brush his teeth, etc. I'm up with him several times a night for bathroom trips, pillow adjustments and meds. Reminds me of when he was a baby, but I'm quite a few years older and not tolerating it too well.

Dave is experiencing all the headaches and fatigue they said he might. He said, "I hate it when the doctors are right." He slept in until almost 1:00 pm today, and that's unheard of. He's so tired, and in a lot of pain and i…

Good News

Friday, September 24, 2004 5:47 PM CDT



We met with Dr. Hutson this morning, he examined the x-rays and said that Zach will not need surgery. Zach is quite relieved.

Dr. H said that it's easier to cast when the swelling goes down a little more, so Z will get his permanent (8 weeks) cast on Monday.

Today Zach said, "What about PE? What about my clarinet? No football....gee, all I'm gonna be able to do is WORK!" Poor kid. :-)

Thanks for the prayers. We were supposed to travel to the mountains this weekend, but looks like Zach isn't going to be up to it.


Thursday, September 23, 2004 2:45 PM CDT

Well, here's a new patient for you to pray for. Seems like when it rains, it pours, and we've been living in a hurricane for about a year.

Zach was carrying the football in a game in Pasco yesterday. He was tackled, and his left arm got mixed up in the wrong place. They called an ambulance, and he went to the hospital, and sure enough, it's broken. And broken pretty badly. Both bones are broken. We'll see an orthopedic surgeon to see if it needs surgery to have pins placed. The guy at Lourdes thought it probably would.

So Zach's football season is over. He's very sad, and worried about basketball. He'll be in a cast for 8 weeks.

He's also in a considerable amount of pain. They gave him vicodin, so he's resting pretty well right now.

For more photos, you can go to there are a few albums there.

On the Dave front, he has an MRI on October 5. Please pray that it shows the gamma knife…


Monday, September 20, 2004 5:33 PM CDT

Well, I talked to Dr. Friedman from Duke. He agrees with Dr. Spence. He feels like Dave is in good physical shape so he should try the BCNU before resorting to any clinical trials. I'm not sure how I feel about it all. I've been depressed since talking to Dr. Friedman, but maybe it's for the best. We're now checking with San Fransisco to see if they say anything different.

Dave is amazing. I talked to him just a bit ago, and he said, "OK then, here we go. I can do this." He's ready for battle. All I can do is cry. Evy might not use her mom's word, but I will. It's a pisser.


Friday, September 17, 2004 7:41 PM CDT

We met with Dr. Sacks yesterday. The options from UW don't look very good to us. Dr. Spence is recommending BCNU. BCNU is an IV chemo that has been around since 1972. It's not terribly effective IV, although it has shown some promise inserted into the tumor cavity at surgery in gliadel wafers. The side effects are many. First, all the classic chemo stuff, severe vomiting for hours after each dose, loss of hair and suppression of the bone marrow, meaning immune suppression. The usual dose is every six weeks, but due to the fact that Dave's been on chemo at such a high dose for so long, even though his counts have been good, Dr. Sacks doubts he'll be able to rebound very well, and every six weeks would be optimistic. The other side effect is pulmonary toxicity...basically, it causes infiltrating fibrous growths in the lungs and can lead to respiratory failure.

The other options are CCNU (an oral chemo) and PCV (an IV chemo), they all …

UW - more details

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 10:39 PM CDT

We heard from Dr. Spence at UW. I talked with him on the phone, brought him up-to-date, and he said he'd look into it and call our local guy. Dr. Sacks called, and we have an appointment on Thursday at 11:00 am to see what the recommendation is. We'll be seeking a second opinion from Duke. It seems that UW is not terribly aggressive in their approach, and Duke seems much more so. Luckily, our local doc is also supportive of a very aggressive approach, so we'll see what he has to say. It will be another week before we can get all the scans to Duke again for a second opinion. Luckily Dr. Friedman is very quick to call back. The Duke BT site is if you are interested in visiting. Please keep praying.

Please also pray for the families on the brain tumor list. We have lost 6 people to this horrible disease this month, and it's only the 14th, and two others are on the final parts of their journey. It's…