Aug 30, 2020 Latest post:
Oct 27, 2020
This summer has been a blast and we have spent most of it outdoors fishing, hiking, camping, kayaking and visiting family and friends. This probably comes as a shock to you, as it does to us that Phil has a very large tumor in his belly.
Less than a month ago he hiked Rim to Rim in the Grand Canyon. Less than a week before his diagnosis of cancer he Kayaked for 3 days in the San Juan Islands. We camped and fished in Stehekin two days prior to his diagnosis. He had stopped eating on our trip and complained of worsening back pain that we thought was from over use. The pain quickly went from chronic back and belly pain to severe pain in his chest, belly, and back. So we went to the emergency department and learned his back was fine, but he had a very large tumor involving his stomach, spleen, and pancreas. He had suspicious lesions in his liver and a nodule in his lung, as well as several enlarged lymph nodes. He had a biopsy was admitted for nutrition and pain control.
At first we thought he had pancreatic cancer then several preliminary biopsies (some of which we thought were the final biopsy results) demonstrated was s a GIST (Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor). We know he does not have a neuroendocrine tumor (pancreatic cancer), GIST tumor, or lymphoma. We are still waiting to learn what kind of malignancy he has and we are waiting for a genetic mutation study to result before starting the best therapy. He has been very anemic requiring two blood transfusions and has had a bad case of gout. He has frequent fevers and chills but no signs of infection.
We feel so blessed by our family, friends, and neighbors who are really supporting us. We feel we have had several miracles. The first is that it was not pancreatic cancer which has a terrible prognosis and the second is that an ultrasound demonstrated the masses in his liver are benign cysts and not cancer. He will have a PET scan after he discharges to look at his lung nodule and to see if he has any metastasis. Phil and I believe God has a plan and some really beautiful things are happening in his life!