Thanks so much, Pink. It's been a long day! I just got home an hour or so ago, absolutely starving.
I will get the results tomorrow morning when I return to Mayo for a consult with my hepatologist.
Thanks, Butterfly. Unfortunately, I have not heard or read anything from anyone who has been on the combo treatment that didn't have very bad side effects. At this moment, I am inclined to not go forward with it. I'll post tomorrow night, after I get the test results from today.
Thank you all so much! John, do you have your test results yet?
As for me, there were no changes in the CT scan; i.e., no new lesions, etc. My blood work was also good. Re: Liver enzymes, only the AST was a little high...but just 3 points above the high end of normal. My eosinophils were high, but that's just an indication of inflammation from the hep C.
I asked about grade and stage. The hepatologist said I am stage 3, grade 3-4, per biopsy done in May '07. My blood work does not reflect that, which only goes to show that it's not always a good indicator of what's going on inside.
For now, though, she felt I am doing well enough that I won't need another CT and blood work for 4-6 mos.
She said they were amazed at how well I had done, through the liver cancer, post-surgical hernias, etc. I told her I had great doctors, but she said to give myself credit, too, for doing all the right things.
I did tell the doctor that I really do not want treatment at this time, just when I'm starting to feel decent. She also felt I should I "take a break" after all I've been through. She did say that there is a new drug to prevent recurrence of certain cancers, and if I had any suspicious lesions in the future, she would put me on that, along with another drug. She also will refer me for any new hep C treatments that might come along.
I had gained 4 lbs. since the end of July, so I need to cut down the amount of food I'm eating, as I'm eating all the right things...just too much of them!
Again, thanks for the prayers and good thoughts. They seem to have helped!
Thanks, Butterfly and John.
John, it would be best if they did a full body MRI with gadolinium contrast. I've had several of those. I was told that the gadolinium makes cancer "light up like a Christmas tree." However, I spoke with a lady yesterday at Mayo, while we were both waiting for our CT scans. She had just been diagnosed with neck cancer per needle aspiration. I could see the lump on her neck. She was scared to death. She was having a CT from the chest up, but said her doctor had mentioned that they might also do a PET scan.
The reason for these partials is that if a throat/neck cancer metastasizes, it is most likely to go to the lungs, brain, and lymph nodes. Metastasis to another site would be unusual, except at end-stage. In the case of my liver cancer, they did a lot of pelvis through head scans, but I also had 4-5 MRIs with gadolinium in the past 3 years. That is the proposed future plan...every 4-6 mos., a CT and/or an MRI.
My thoughts and prayers are with you, John.
Thanks, Cary and Lucy. I can literally feel my body saying a loud NO to any treatment at this time. It has only been 3 months since the last hernia repair and I feel like I'm still healing from that internally. Mentally, I am also thinking that it would be rather stupid to pour a bunch of harsh chemicals into my remaining liver when I am doing so well now. I can't imagine that would be a good thing.
I took today to sleep late and do nothing much. Tomorrow I have to grocery shop and Fri. I'm getting my hair cut.
Hugs for all,