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Mark A. Mueller
8/6/2017 Latest post:
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
It all started with a back ache. After having a couple months of severe back pain, I decided to go to a chiropractor. Two visits with the Chiropractor he refers me to a medical doctor because he couldn't get any movement in my back or give me comfort. Finally after Memorial weekend I made an appointment with my doctor. On June 2, my doctor diagnosed me with a hernia and had me make an appointment with a surgeon. I saw the surgeon within a couple days. The surgeon was not convinced it was a hernia, but he scheduled me for surgery and ordered a ct-scan. June 8 I went in for a ct-scan and the following week I heard back from the surgeon; the hernia surgery was off the table! The surgeon had two different radiologists look at my ct-scan and the second radiologist found a lesion on my spine. I asked the surgeon "are you telling me I have cancer" and his response was "I would be surprised if you don't".
On June 22 I had a ct-guided biopsy of T12 lesion. And within a week I receive another phone call confirming that I have cancer.
June 30 Kara my wife and I meet with Dr. Hartung, Oncologist with MN Oncology. Dr. Hartung was very informative and taught us that they needed to determine the exact kind of plasma cell disorder (bone marrow cancer). So on June 30 I had multiple blood draws, July 6 I had a bone marrow biopsy, on July 7 I had 18 bones x-rayed, and gave a 24 hour urine sample.
July 14 I learn that I have Stage 2 (out of 3 stages) Multiple Myeloma. "Myeloma is a cancer of the plasma cells in the bone marrow, the spongy tissue inside of bones. Myeloma begins when healthy plasma cells in the bone marrow change and grow out of control. Myeloma often damages the bone and is usually called multiple myeloma because most people have multiple bone lesions, meaning areas of damaged tissue, at the time it is diagnosed." www.cancer.net/myeloma
July 21 I start my first round of chemotherapy. And learn the plan of treatment. The goal of my treatment plan is get me to a bone marrow transplant at the University of Minnesota to put my cancer into remission! As the Oncologists states " Goal of Therapy is to help me live as long as possible, with the highest quality of life. A medical cure is not possible" But - remission is very possible and the Oncologists states that I qualify for a transplant!!
July 27 Kara, Zach and I have an appointment with the University of Minnesota Bone Marrow Transplant Doctor and Team. We learn all about the bone marrow transplant process and what it takes to get ready for the transplant. We are hopeful that within four months I will start the transplant process! I am ready to work hard to get this cancer into remission.
Today, August 6 - I did great with the first week of chemo; into the second week I started getting very tired, weak and confused and by the third week I was getting unstable bringing me to where I am today. I am in HCMC in downtown Minneapolis with a fractured back and complications with low platelet levels. So follow me on my journey as I am working hard to kick cancers ass and get into remission!