Thursday, March 31, 2005

Double Vision

Thursday, March 31, 2005 5:45 PM CST

Hello all, still experiencing computer woes. Borrowing a friend's computer for a quick update.

The good news. Dave has been feeling great since last update. Finally got bored being a house-husband/daddy and went back to work in the afternoons. Seems to be going well, and he's so glad to be back with "his" kids. The administration has been very supportive of Dave, and we're grateful he has such wonderful people to work with/for.

The not-so-good news. Yesterday Dave was fine in the morning, but by noon had double vision. This could be for one of three reasons. 1. Tumor growth. (bad, we don't want this one) 2. Swelling due to the gamma knife. (best option, can usually be controlled with decadron, but can cause lots of problems and may get worse.) 3. Radiation necrosis (not as bad as tumor growth, it means the gamma knife is killing the cells, but the dead/dying tissue is causing problems. If it doesn't get too big/bad, his body will eventually get rid of the dead tissue, but it takes a long time, and the necrosis can cause the same problems as the tumor and sometimes requires surgery to remove. This option is better than tumor growth, but less than ideal.)

So.....I came to school to bring Dave the decadron (he's been off it completely for 2 weeks), and there were three police cars in the parking lot, and three policemen in his room. Talk about adrenaline rush...I was SCARED. Turns out it was an awareness campaign about the dangers of drunk driving. Whew.

Dave took the decadron and within an hour, his double vision had cleared up. This is a fairly positive sign, far from a guarantee, but good.

We called the doc, and they brought Dave right in that afternoon for labs and an MRI. He wasn't scheduled for an MRI until end of April. Now we're waiting on results.

Man, I really HATE waiting. I'm no good at it, and I've had a LOT of practice and it's not getting any easier. Hmmph.

Love you all. KOKO and KP (Keep Praying!)

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Back from Disney!

Wednesday, March 9, 2005 10:56 PM CST

Back from Disneyland! What a wonderful, wonderful time. Peter, Cheryl, Austen, Peyton & Ethan, we can't thank you enough for everything. What an amazing gift!

Denise, Darren, Jake, Amy, Luke
Bob, Mindy, Annalee, Caleb
Erik, Evy, Canute, Sonja

Thanks for joining us and making it such a special time!

I'll post more, including pics soon. Suffice it to say, it was the BEST!

San Francisco was also great. Dr. Prados is amazing. He first read the MRI for us, and although it was difficult to do because we had to keep switching back and forth between cd's to see both images and couldn't do a side-by-side comparison, he says that Dave's tumor looks better, it looks like it's beginning to shrink. He said that there are some people who have really great response to tamoxifen, and perhaps Dave will be one of them. (WE ALSO KNOW THAT ALL OF THAT PRAYER POWER HAD MUCH TO DO WITH THAT TUMOR MAKING A RETREAT!) He suggested adding thalidomide to the tamoxifen and increasing the dose of tamoxifen. He also outlined for us some other next steps he would take in the event that the tamoxifen stops working. The only downer was that Dave is not eligible for the Poly ICLC trial because he's had too many procedures. Dr. Prados did let us know of some other trials that Dave would be eliglible for, but those are single-agent trials, so for now, and as long as we can, we'll stay with the tamoxifen and add thalidomide.

If you'd like to read more about any of the treatments I talk about, I'd recommend www.virtualtrials.com It's a great website with lots of information.

Gotta get to bed now, but wanted you to know that we're home with answered prayers in hand (or in Dave's head at any rate!)

Love you all,
Shelley