On December 26, 2017, Anna Lisa went to the Emergency Department at United Hospital for signs of weakness. Later in the night after an MRI of her brain was completed and results were delivered, she was admitted to the Neuro ICU for close observation. We were informed, at that time, that there were areas of concern on her brain and she would need further diagnostic testing.
On December 27, 2017, we received the diagnosis that was most dreaded, Stage 4 lung cancer with metastasis to the brain. In layman's words, the cancer started in her lungs and the cancerous lung tissue has traveled to the brain and caused her brain to be spotted with cancer. The spots on her brain are called lesions, they are causing her brain to swell and overall causing her weakness, dizziness, headache and tendency to fall. The plan going forward to is to complete a lung biopsy today (December 29) and decrease the inflammation in the brain so the majority of her symptoms can reside. She has been fitted for her radiation mask and will start radiation to the brain as soon as we know what cancer we are trying to fight. The radiation in conjunction with IV steroids will in theory decrease the inflammation. We will know what they plan to do with the lungs after they biopsy is completed.
She will remain in United until early next week and when discharged from the hospital will have multiple appointments to monitor the cancer and hopefully kick cancers ass. She is now in step down unit which means they doing less monitoring and they will wake her up every 4 hours instead of every 2 hours. The biggest thing her brain needs right now is rest. I like to describe cancer cells as unproductive teenagers making a lot babies in the back seat of the their cars and taking up a whole lot of space (how an instructor described to me in the pass). She appreciates visitors but the afternoon is usually a better time to visit, since most of the procedures are completed in the morning.
The main writer (Britney, Jake's girlfriend) will be keeping everyone in the loop through this page. Co writers will include Lisa and Jake (son). By providing updates on this page it will allow all of us to return to a "new normal" in the next few weeks. The updates will be posted as a journal entry. If anyone is interested in helping (all is much appreciated), further details will be provided once we know what is going on in greater detail.