Please read! Thanks for visiting Billy’s Caring Bridge site. We thought this might be a good way to get information and updates to our family and friends.
We didn’t know it, but it all started with a tooth problem. Billy had a wisdom tooth causing him some discomfort and feeling “weird” back in April. It got pulled. Then it didn’t heal correctly so over a couple of months he went to an oral surgeon for a consultation and then who worked on it two different times. It kept feeling “weird.”
Then, around the time of my father’s death in mid-November Billy began to have a lump on the left side of his neck under his jaw line, the same side as the wisdom tooth. The lump began to get bigger and bigger and cause pain.
After an appointment with his internal medicine doctor who ordered and read an ultrasound and then a CT scan (without contrast), he was referred to an ENT doctor to do a biopsy of the now quite large tumor on his neck. Upon returning to get the results, the doctor took gum tissue for a second biopsy from guess where? Yep. That same place that has been causing trouble for months.
The two biopsies that have been done on Billy were both cancer. The first biopsy on the now-baseball sized tumor on his neck under his left jaw showed squamous cell carcinoma of the head/neck (not skin cancer); the second one on the gum tissue in his mouth showed mucosal [subsequent results showed] squamous carcinoma which the ENT doctor here said was the origin of the neck tumor.
We have been self-quarantining and doing work in our office in preparation of going to Texas for a second opinion. We flew out Monday morning January 10th for M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, TX and will probably be there about a week. They have scheduled several consultations and tests already for the week. The very first test is a Covid test! If he fails that, we have to leave and come back in 20 days. We do NOT want that to happen! We had a drive-through Covid test Friday in Macon that was negative. We wore N95 masks on the plane. We are being careful.
We have great expectations for the doctors and staff at M. D. Anderson. We have confidence that they will find effective surgery and treatment for Billy’s cancer. We appreciate all the prayers and love that you all have shown us. We feel it!