Before the update, thought an executive summary recap would be in order:
- April 2019 – Diagnosed with Primary Clear Cell Variant Hepatocellular Carcinoma – Stage 4 liver cancer with a tumor thrombus extending from the tumor into the right atrium of the heart in the inferior vena cava with multiple metastatic disease in both lungs.
- May 2019 – Began immunotherapy treatment with drugs called Opdivo and Yervoy. In addition, 1 week of radiation treatment to attempt to shrink the thrombus
- Jan 2020 – Became a type 1 diabetic for life due to side effects of immunotherapy
- March 2020 – Heart attack
- April 2020 – stopped immunotherapy due to side effects
- Nov 2020 – PET scan showed that the tumor was growing again. Therapy resumed but with different drugs called Tecentriq and Avastin.
So now moving forward………My last PET scan took place Feb 24, 2021. I was concerned because this was the first PET scan since starting the new drugs in Nov 2020. I was having no side effects and could the new treatment actually reverse the growth? The results of the PET scan were really good! The tumor growth, the intensity, and the lesions in my lungs have all diminished! As a result, the treatment will continue without change and all of my cancer history is being sent to Sloan-Kettering for evaluation, once again, to determine if I am a candidate for surgery to remove the thrombus and a good chunk of the tumor. It will be several weeks before I hear back from Sloan-Kettering and if they think surgery is the best option, it will be no less than 4 months before the procedure would take place. So, until further notice, I will try to love life, family, friends, fishing, and God! Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.