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11/30/2016 Latest post:
On the evening of October 24th, 2016, Ralph went to the ER with a persistent cough. During the visit, the hospital staff took an x-ray of Ralph's chest to find a mass on his left lung. They then performed a CT scan which showed a tumor. The next step was to schedule a biopsy on Thursday of that week. After the biopsy the doctor explained that Ralph has Squamous Cell Carcinoma in his lung, as well as an abdominal aortic aneurysm. The first course of action was to schedule a PET scan, which showed that the cancer had not spread to the lymph nodes. Following the test, the aneurysm needed to be repaired. On November 10th, Ralph underwent a laparoscopy to correct the aneurysm and the surgery went well with one overnight stay. The next decision was to decide how to attack the cancer. Options included surgery or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation. After several consultations, it was determined that surgery would be an option at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. Before surgery they did a Bronchoscopy on Monday, November 21 to verify that the lymph nodes were negative. Ralph was cleared for surgery to remove the upper lobe of his left lung, containing the cancer. Surgery is scheduled for November 30 and Ralph is ready with his bucket to put the cancerous tumor. God is good and has led this process and for that Praise the Lord.