Yesterday’s treatment went well; nodes in my neck seem to have disappeared. I did get pretty tired last night, but for the most part the treatments have very little physical effect. We scheduled a PET scan for late October to see how my chest looks, and we’re expecting to see significant decrease in the nodes there as well. The Good is very good.
Dr. Nik received the full pathology report from Emory and the panel shows no genetic mutations. That’s bad because those mutations would be the markers for what’s “driving” the cancer.
So, we still don’t know exactly what we’re dealing with here.
This won’t be a problem as long as the Keytruda is working, but cancer has a way of finding another path to bypass the drug, and side-effects can creep up over time. Without having identified a driver, we can’t craft our Plan B. Hoping the Keytruda remains effective and that I don’t develop side effects.
In the meantime, to identify that driver, we’re sending slides of my nodes to FoundationOne, known for their work in next generation DNA testing. My pathologist friend Lisa said this was good.
And, the other part of Dr Nik’s practice is research. He said they’re doing clinical trials with a drug that takes immunotherapy a step further, and walked me through how both drugs work. He’s very excited about the results thus far, and that drug may be an option if necessary.
So we end The Bad with A Good.
Other than the reality that you don’t cure cancer, you just treat it, there isn’t really an ugly at this point. The financial aspect would probably be pretty ugly without insurance – thanks again Lara!
I hope y’all enjoy the Danish National Symphony Orchestra’s version of this classic.
In the meantime, please remember that…
Every person you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.