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Abrub follow-up

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 2063
Joined: Mar 2010

New growth, but essentially status quo

I’m just back from Sloan Kettering and my latest MRI and dr’s appt.  While the MRI has shown some definite tumor growth (we don’t have the full report yet with exact measurements) my surgeon is not overly concerned.  We do have to watch it, but he believes it to be confined by scar tissue, and of very low risk for infiltration (based on the history of my pathology.) 

Options to remove it were offered – including thermal ablation (which he doesn’t like for me – fears spreading cells along the needle lines).  He also could surgically remove it, with the potential of a cure. However, his preference, and we agree, is to do nothing, and re-scan in 6 months.  His feeling is that the growth poses no risk to me (and surgery always carries a risk.)  My current quality of life is excellent (fully normal) and on the off chance that some other spot starts to grow, he’d rather go in once than twice.  He believes that this was missed on my surgery 2 years ago because it was too small; had we waited 6 months more for that surgery, it would have been picked up by the scans and removed then.  The longer I go with no new spots, the less likely it is that they will sprout, but as long as this tumor presents no risk, I’m better off living with it 

Regardless of what we do, I’m going to be jammed into an MRI for an hour and a half every 6 months for the foreseeable future.  I like the fact that my surgeon has favorable reasons for discouraging surgeryright now.  I’m not “inoperable” but at this point, it’s just not worth it.

While I would have preferred to hear “no growth” and I do know that there is a great likelihood of more surgery in the future (ideally talking several years from now) the news really was as good as good be hoped for, and in some ways, even better.  We had a lengthy discussion on how tumors can change, and the fact that what he removed 2 years ago was identical to what had been removed 11 years ago is excellent in terms of my prognosis and why we can (and should) wait to act further.  It essentially confirms that a few cells had been missed, and it took them 9+ years to grow into a measurable tumor.   The discussion of the history of my tumor was very encouraging.

Of note, he will be presenting my case at Conference next week, but we don't anticipate that will change anything in our plans.  If it does, you'll hear it here.

So now I go back to normal day-to-day life.  Kayaking, bicycling, traveling, enjoying.  Yes, I’m living with cancer, but the fact is that I’m living WELL with cancer.

Alice

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6033
Joined: Feb 2009

Glad you are keeping to being normal and you feel good enough to do all that.  I'm sorry you didn't get better news, but you didn't get alarming news, especially if the doctor wants to wait 6 months and it is the wait and see approach.  You and your doctor are right, surgery always poses a risk.  Glad they are taking it to a panel.  It's always good to get more opinions.  Keep up the great spirit and all that fun stuff you do.

Kim

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 4691
Joined: Jan 2013

You are our rock. Your positive attitude is such a powerful example for us here. 

I wish your news was better, but it is what it is, and I know you will LIVE your life around it. 

Thank you for all of your posts. You are truly a survivor.

Tru

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