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Squamous Cell Carcinoma is why I am telling John's story here. John has it and it just won’t leave him alone.
Summary of it not leaving him alone: 1. June 2019, bump inside of his ear is bugging him... isn't normal and starts to grow.....goes to his dermatologist to get it tested right before July 4th. He gets the results after our July 4th Rivah vacation and immediately has an appointment for MOHS skin surgery. When he goes for the surgery that is when he finds out this squamous cell is particularly aggressive and angry. Dr. K works diligently removing the cancer and closed him up with clean margins. He took very good of his ear during the healing. The ear was left very thin...but no cancer.
2. September 1, 2019 John feels new bumps in his ear. He visits the skin surgery center and they test...it is back. After some discussion and the aggressive growth of the cancer...we head over to Dr. Burke who is ENT who specializes in reconstruction. It is decided that he will remove the ear and make him a new one. He did a beautiful job (October 7, 2019). The ear was smaller...and that is when John realized maybe he had big ears...hahaha. Cancer is gone...or so we think.
3. October 31, 2019 After the surgery , it highly recommended John see Dr. Chin about getting radiation. So he goes...but he doesn't really want it. His first appointment with her they feel a small bump in the new ear and she sends him for a PET scan. The PET scan detects cancer in the lymph nodes and bump in the ear is the return of the cancer. The plan going forward will be very aggressive....more aggressive than the cancer. He will do 7 weeks of radiation along with a chemotherapy that makes the radiation work harder. He started right after Thanksgiving and finished in January. Clean PET scan in April...woohoo cancer is gone!
4. July 2020 John has an ear infection and goes to the local doc in the box. He gets antibiotics and the infection heals...but the pain doesn't go away. This is the beginning of what was endless doctors appointments to try and figure out the pain. I could go on and on with what he went through trying to get a diagnosis. This cancer does not act normal...it is super sneaky. On October 24th I took John to the emergency room and they admitted him. He stayed until October 29th, and during the stay he was finally able to get the news that the cancer has returned to the same area.
PET scan on November 5th confirmed that the cancer has returned around the parotid gland and around the jaw. The cancer has not spread anywhere else...what his cancer has done is localized regional spread.
The journal entries will be my attempt to keep everyone updated on his doctor visits and what treatment he will be receiving.