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1/22/2017 Latest post:
In October of 2014, Lisa had a malignant mole removed that proved to be melanoma. At the time, the closest lymph nodes were biopsied and showed no sign of any melanoma. In Early October of 2016, Lisa came down with the seasonal flu/cough that lasted an abnormally long time. After antibiotics for both pneumonia and bronchitis were unsuccessful, she insisted on an x-ray of her lungs, which led to more CT scans. Those scans came back showing a mass in the middle lobe of her right lung. Subsequent scans the next day showed a mass above her kidneys in her retro peritoneal space (the area behind her abdominal cavity). By mid November, each mass had been needle biopsied but neither of the pathology reports showed conclusive results. This was a difficult period filled with uncertainty and pain from the mass in her abdomen that had been steadily getting larger. In early December, the mass from her lungs was removed and biopsied, confirming our suspicions that we were dealing with Stage IV Metastatic Melanoma. Immunotherapy treatments were started Late December and every two weeks after. After the first few treatments, the abdominal tumor showed signs "flaring," something which is common. Lisa started to increase her pain medications, switching from one narcotic to another, trying to manage the pain and nausea. This continued until the end of January, when the decision was made to remove the tumor. The surgeon prepared everyone before hand with the possibility that organs might have to be removed as part of the procedure, including the spleen, part of the pancreas, part of the colon and kidney. Fortunately, the surgery went smoothly and no organs had to be removed. Lisa is healing well, has reduced her pain medications, and is doing well!