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It all started with a routine cough. Maria had a nagging cough starting the end of February. The first weekend of March, she had no energy and was just tired. So, Monday morning she made an appointment to see Dr. Gilles.(You have to know that Maria does not go to the doctor for these types of things, so someone higher was pushing her to make the appointment.) Dr. Gilles was concerned about a lump that he could feel in neck and decided that she should have a CT scan. This was set up for the next Monday in New Ulm. Tuesday, Dr. Gilles' office calls and said that they would like to discuss the CT scan results. It looks like she may have cancer of the lung. The CT scan went low enough to catch the top of her lung and it showed a mass in the right lung. So, back to New Ulm for a full body CT scan. Dr. Gilles referred Maria to the University of Minnesota, where on Thursday she met with Dr. Roa, who set up a biopsy of the lymph node in her right neck and possible scope into her right lung.
Friday, Duane, Maria and Adam headed back to the University of Minnesota for what ended up being an extremely long day! Adam says that he had to charge his phone twice to keep up with the wrestling and basketball updates while waiting. She had to check in by 10 a.m., and her surgery was scheduled for 12:30 p.m. Well, it ended up that she didn't get in until 3:30 p.m., and the first biopsy didn't have enough in it for them to tell if there was cancer, so they had to continue the surgery to get more of the lymph node. The lymph node was confirmed-cancer. In this case they did not have to scope into her lung. By the time she came out of the anesthesia, they were concerned about the wound opening and considered admitting her, but the hospital was full. Duane and Maria had initially intended on coming home to Fairfax, but then the hospital staff decided that if they stayed at Adams in Rosemount, they would let her go home. Maria was finally discharged from the hospital at 10:30 p.m. and off to Adam's they went to stay the night.
An appointment with an oncologist was scheduled for this past Wednesday, wherein he scheduled the PET scan and MRI of the brain to see if the cancer has spread any further than the right lung and right lymph nodes. (This is scheduled for Tuesday, the 28th.) The oncologist did explain that the mass is about 1x3 inches. He requested a DNA test of the biopsy, because if it contains the correct DNA, it is possible that the cancer can be treated with a medication. Because Maria is a non-smoker, there will be more options available to deal with the cancer. But, until we have the results of the PET scan and MRI, we do not know what the treatment plan will be.
Maria is working(it is tax season after all!!!) and trying to keep a fairly normal schedule right now!! Please keep her and her family in your prayers.