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About 5 years ago Eric went to the Dr for a lump in his abdomen. Dr thought it was due to an ulcer and told him to take OTC acid reducers like Previcid ...or rantidine. He did and he took them and the lump went away. Over this last summer his symptoms returned. He thought it was a return of the ulcer. He went to Dr again.. Dr wanted to do further tests but Eric refused.., In the absense of further tests, Dr thought it was the return of the ulcer. Eric again took OTC acid reducers but it did not help.. the lump got bigger and in December he ended up in the ER with severe abdominal pain. They gave him fluids and morphine and ran a bunch of tests... part of his abdominal bloating was due to severe constipation. They gave him a referral to a gastroenterologist who upon examination sent him for a ct scan.. When the ct scans came back the Dr immediately called him in and let him know that he had a large mass.. likely cancer and sent him to an oncologist he also ordered a upper GI and colonoscopy. To check for the source of the Tumor. Luckily both turned out to be negative for cancer although a few polyps were removed. The oncologist ordered about 15 blood tests which all appeared normal. The oncologist then ordered a ct biopsy. This was painful for Eric as he was required to lay on his back and not move while they scanned him. Unfortunately he did move and they had to scan him twice.. They injected him with lidocaine and inserted a long thick needle to remove 3 tumor samples which were sent to 3 labs 1 to Iowa city and 2 locally.. all 3 labs agreed. Non hodgkins lymphoma.. either large b cell or agressive follicular type. (Another biopsy would be required to determine which and since the treatment is same the Dr choose not to pursue). A PET scan was next. Cancer likes sugar so for the PET scan they inject radioactive glucose that basically "lights up" where the cancer cells eat it so it can be seen under the scan. This was another difficult scan as he was again required to lay flat... His theory is that the cancer has grown into connective tissue and it pulls when he is required to stretch out. Very painful. He received the results of this last test last Tuesday. Unfortunately it showed the tumour about the size of a melon and 3 spots on his liver so Stage IV. Dr is treating it aggressively in hospital.
Today marks his first day of inpatient treatment. I will post his progress separately as the day progresses. Eric and Mike wish to thank everyone for their calls, texts, concern and prayers.