So it all began with some vague back pain after moving this spring. Stretching, chiropractors, message, and drugs just didn't seem to help. I finally.....being the nurse I am, went to urgent care at the beginning of August. At that time I was diagnosed with a possible muscle tear and a spot was noted on my chest X-ray. Since my main concern was back pain, the spot was of secondary significance to me. I continued to take it easy to see if the muscle pain would improve but it only escalated. I had started a post masters program at Vanderbilt in August and was in Nashville at school when the pain finally got the better of me and I drove home for further evaluation.
I had an MRI that showed severe metastatic disease in my thoracic spine with compression fractures at T3 and T5, as well as a mass in my right lung. The backstory is that I was treated for stage 1 anal cancer 2 years ago with chemo/radiation. It's uncertain yet whether this is metastatic from the anal cancer or yet a new cancer. Pathology will tell the tale.
Friday I underwent T1-T8 fusion with laminectomies at T3,4,5 to debulk the tumor and make room for more effective radiation. In about 3 weeks I'll get a 10 episode course of radiation to my spine to try to slow the progression.
I'm surrounded by my sons and 6 pack of sisters and being well cared for. Pain is very tolerable. I'm hoping to go home from the hospital tomorrow. My faith is strong and I know God is holding my hand every step of the way.
Thank you all in advance for your blessings and prayers.