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7/13/2017 Latest post:
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Back in January 2017, Greg had a cold. When you have a cold, sometimes your lymph nodes get swollen near your neck. When the cold was gone, the lymph nodes were still swollen. A trip to Dr was in order - and he prescribed some antibiotics thinking that it may just be a lingering infection. The course of antibiotics was over and the swelling had gone down some, but it was still noticeable. He scheduled a visit to the Ear Nose & Throat (ENT) department @ MC Clinic. They did a physical exam and recommended an ultrasound guided biopsy. He had that done, and we waited. On May 9th we got the results of the biopsy and learned some new vocabulary words.
Excuse me - what? Did they make a mistake? He didn't FEEL like he had cancer - maybe they got the charts mixed up.
Dr Jalukar explained what to expect next and very briefly gave a tentative care plan. What we DID know is that he has cancer. It is in the lymph system, which typically originates from another source - whether it be the lungs, esophagus, colon, etc. So we really are not sure at this point where it is, exactly, and what we are dealing with. So, the next step was to schedule a CT/PET scan to find out where it may have originated. We had to wait for the hospital to clear the scan order through insurance first. Why does it matter? The doctor ordered it - it should be automatic. I will never understand the medical/insurance industry. It's all a joke. So anyway, we waited. And waited. Finally, he had the scan done on May 17th. Then waited some more. On May 23rd, we got the results of the CT/PET scan - it showed the cancer cells as being localized to the neck. Which I guess is good news, if there is anything "good" about this. It sounds like it is a very treatable/curable type of cancer, so there's that....
We took Dr Jalukar's advice and sought a second opinion. We could go anywhere - he would make the call. Well, Mayo Clinic in Rochester is just a 90 mile jaunt up the road, and it has been consistently one of the best health care systems in the world, so why not?