Michael Rybarski

First post: Oct 12, 2020 Latest post: Oct 21, 2020
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Mid August Michael had been feeling under the weather and thought he had the flu.  After a week of still feeling lethargic and a negative COVID test Jan noticed Michael’s torso looked misshapen.  Thinking he may have some kind of GI blockage they went to their Gastroenterologist on 8/31/2020 who quickly diagnosed a mass on his upper left abdomen.  The doctor wanted a CT the next day but going home with that news & waiting for a day for the test and then results would have been torture so within the hour they were at the imaging place for a CT. Then they went home to anxiously awaited test results.   The CT showed an enlarged Spleen and multiple enlarged Lymph nodes.  Michael’s Primary doctor spoke with the GI doc and referred Michael to oncology, Dr. Preti. Dr. Preti reviewed the scan and said the first thing is the Spleen needs to go before we move forward with any treatment and referred them to a surgeon, Dr. Reardon. 

 

September 17 Michael had a Splenectomy at the Methodist Hospital in Houston.  The Spleen was HUGE! The doctor said it was 30x19cm and was pretty hard to get out given the weight and size of it.  Michael tolerated the procedure well though and was in the hospital from five days; thankfully Jan was able to stay with him after the first night.  The spleen and a few lymph nodes were sent to pathology to confirm what they assumed was a Lymphoma diagnosis and to pinpoint the type of Lymphoma.  Michael has recovered from the surgery well but did have some A-fib for a week or so.  The next meeting with the oncologist confirmed Lymphoma, specifically Indolent B-Cell Lymphoma.  The treatment would be a combination of Chemotherapy and Immunotherapy beginning October 12.  The oncologist also has said this type of Lymphoma is curable. 

 

Before receiving the chemotherapy Michael needed to get a port-a-cath (we’ll just call it a port).  It was supposed to be an outpatient procedure but he was having some fluid retention and they decided to keep him overnight, which turned into three days in the hospital.  His lungs had fluid which was drained and he felt a lot better (2 liters from the left & 1 liter from the right).  With that under control he was able to go home and anxiously await chemotherapy.  You read that right, he was excited for chemo because he knows that is what will help him get better.  Everything else over the past two months has been managing symptoms and doing what needs to be done BEFORE chemo could start, but it wasn’t actually treating his Lymphoma. 

 

Michael has been in good spirits and is ready to beat this (and he will).  Chemo started on Monday, October 12, 2020.  He will have a full day of chemo every third Monday for six rounds.  He should finish up in January 2021.  Thanks for reading and keeping Michael & Jan in your prayers.  

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