Goblet Cell Appendiceal - Stage IV
Since my husband's diagnoses of goblet cell appendix cancer (with abdominal and pelvis spread), on July 3, 2014, I've found it helpful to read about other similar cancer stories. I'd like to provide that same support to others, as well as hear more of others' experiences. This has been our experience, so far:
July 3, 2014 - admitted to hospital, through ER, due to right-lower abdominal pain. Up until he was roled into the surgery room for an appendectomy, we were told "this is textbook appendicitis." I waited 2 hours for what was supposed to be a 45-minute laparoscopy. The doctor came out and the look on her face said it all: "I'm so sorry, but your husband has cancer of the appendix." I didn't even know there was such a thing... After removing his appendix, she noticed a few nodules in his abdominal cavity which she biopsied to determine if they were also cancerous.
July 7, 2014 - CT scan done, which showed no signs of cancer.
July 9, 2014 - initial oncology appt with a UCLA specialist, who confirmed a "very rare and aggressive form of cancer," and advised that the cancer cells are likely too microscopic to appear on CT scan and therefore recommended 6 months of chemotherapy. Given the distance between our home and UCLA, the oncologist referred us to his colleague who is affiliated with UCLA aas well as a hospital closer to our home, and whose office is closer to our home.
July 10, 2014 - saw 2nd oncologist (this was actually the oncologist we were also referred to by the doctor who performed the laparoscopy). The onc confirmed "very rare aggressive form of cancer" and referred us to a specialist, Dr. Andrew Lowy, at UCSD to discuss treatment option (i.e. HIPEC surgery)
July 13, 2014 - hired macrobiotic teacher and started macrobiotic diet, to support medical process
July 17, 2014 - saw general oncologist and surgical oncologist at City of Hope, for yet another opinion. Felt pressured to schedule HIPEC with City of Hope doctors IMMEDIATELY. HIPEC was scheduled but we later cancelled, after consulting with Dr. Lowy, whom we felt more comfortable with.
July 22, 2014 - saw Dr. Lowy (loved him and his nurse, Debbie!) who confirmed, with a less scary tone, "a very rare and aggressive form of cancer." He discussed criteria and process of HIPEC, diagnostic tests, and methods for monitoring cancer response to chemo treatment (scans and blood work). Scheduled a laparoscopy to determine current extent of cancer.
July 29, 2014 - 2nd laparoscopy was performed by Dr. Lowy. Cancer was too dispersed throughout abdominal cavity and pelvis to perform HIPEC now. Therefore, chemotherapy was recommended in hopes that cancer will shrink, making HIPEC more effective/easier to perform. Also, since my husband's CT scan and bloodwork were normal, a PET scan was ordered (Dr. Lowy is hoping the cancer will show up on the PET, that way the PET will be used to monitor my husband's response to chemo). If PET Scan is normal, a 3rd laparoscopy will be done in 4 months following start of chemo, to determine response to chemo.
August 4, 2014 - back to our general oncologist to discuss starting chemotherapy and what to expect from it.
August 12, 2014 - chemo-teaching class, where we learned about possible side effects of drugs.
August 13, 2014 (today) - PET scan scheduled for this morning
August 14, 2014 - chemotherapy (xelado and Oxaliplatin; Avastin to begin next round) to begin.
Everyday - praying for us and for you!
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