Update from the brain guy.
[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=brains&iid=230516″ src=”0226/aa254947-bb0e-4698-8c58-3eb35f6da8a9.jpg?adImageId=11591201&imageId=230516″ width=”234″ height=”312″ /] If you remember from my last post, the oncologist admitted he wasn’t an expert on brain scans, but he was concerned about the potential 1mm growth of the two lesions. The good news is that the brain guy said the margin of error on the brain MRI is 1mm, and both showed growth of 1mm or a little less. In brain-guy land, that means that both lesions are considered “stable” as in they technically didn’t grow at all.
So, this is a good lesson for me to look at the bright side more often and try to remember the margin of error on each scan.
The plan now is to scan again in two months to see if there’s any more growth or if they remain stable. It could be that I’ll have to get my brain scanned every two months for the rest of my life, but if it keeps these things in sight and under control, then it will be worth it — maybe not to my insurance company, but to me.
I asked about how many lesions they can treat at once. The answer is up to 10, but I’d have to go to a fancy-pants machine downtown for that.
I also asked when the breaking point is for doing whole brain radiation versus treating the lesion with SRS or gamma knife, and the answer is four lesions. This is a little confusing because they can treat up to ten at once, but they advise going with whole brain radiation if you have four at once since that many at once indicates some underlying disease that might spread quickly and cause seizures. We’re not at that decision point yet, so I’m not going to worry about it.
The disadvantage of whole brain radiation is the potential for early dementia. So, should we come to that decision point I’ll likely ask for lots of prayer in making the decision. But again, we’re not there yet.
I’m on chemo break right now and will start back again a week from Thursday. Meanwhile, I’m suffering the after-effects of the Neulasta, which is the shot I had to have last week to build white blood cells since mine took a quick dive to below-normal-land in a week. The Neulasta causes bone pain, nausea, headaches, and so forth. Right now I’m having pretty bad shooting pains in my hip bones, and my lower back is reacting by going into spasms.
Hank taught me a great breathing exercise that is dealing with the pain since I can’t take most pain meds (they interact with the chemo…). I’m also going to blast it with an hour of yoga this morning. I’ll be the one in the back of the room trying not to scream, but it should help. Sitting on my