Happy: A Quest for Life After Death

Monday, February 11, 2008


Dr. Ryan says a lot of things that I either don't understand or can't hear because I often can't focus during appointments. I'm too busy trying not to throw up.

A few things come through in hi-def, however, like a line from Friday's appointment: "I'm very happy with the results of the scan."

A new CT scan shows that the tumors in Mat's liver are the same size now that they were three months ago. This is thanks to Sutent, the drug Mat is currently taking. Sutent only produces results for 15-20 percent of the people who take it, but, as Dr. Ryan likes to say, it looks like it could hit a home run for Mat.

Of course there is a qualifier: none of the drugs used to treat Mat's cancer is a cure. They work by inhibiting one or more of the pathways the tumors use to grow, but eventually the tumors find a way to work around them.

Dr. Ryan says the drug could keep the tumors from growing for perhaps a year or even longer.

(Are you thinking what I'm thinking? How is that a home run? What planet does Dr. Ryan live on, anyway? Never mind. After trying two different drug regimens in 2006 that were a complete flop, I'll take good news where I can get it!)

If/when the drug stops working, we try something else.

In the meantime, I'm looking forward to a nice, predictable year: our tenth wedding anniversary, birthdays, vacations (that aren't cancelled at the last minute to accommodate a major surgery), another summer, another school year, another Christmas.

Mat, on the other hand, thinks life is never predictable. I have to admit, he may be onto something ...


EmilyCC said...

Yay for Sutent! Glad to hear the good news :)

Anonymous said...

Wonderful news! I'm sure cancer is a lot like neurology, how much do the doctor's really know? Every body is too different in their chemical make up.
It's all a guessing game . . . It sounds like so far his doctor is a good guesser!

ellen said...

Thanks for sharing the good news!

SLP said...

I hope you celebrate!

Anonymous said...

i found your blog again--after way too long! now i feel up on the news, but i miss your voice. i will try to call when you are likely to be a) not at work and b) not in the middle of bedtime routine!



Rebecca said...

I'm so happy to still be on the Arl RS list thus getting your blog link today. I'm in awe of your faith, K. I hope while the sutent is working progress will be made in treatment and in Mat's health. You're in my prayers.

Janae said...

Good News! I think of you often and appreciate that you keep us updated with you blog.

Anonymous said...

Good for you! So happy for you all!
Eileen P.

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