Thomas Bugg

First post: Aug 25, 2022 Latest post: Sep 1, 2023
Hello family and friends!  ( and to those we have never even met- amazing!)
 In an effort to keep you updated on  all that has been happening in the last 2 months... here is Thomas's story!


 For the short version... on June 24, Thomas (22 years old) was diagnosed with Advanced Stage Hodgkins Lymphoma (stage 4). He will have 12 rounds of chemo every 2 weeks for 6 months.


For the whole story with details... continue reading below!
In the Spring, Thomas toured Havana , Cuba with a group from the University of Alabama. They all had a great time but several came back home with E-Coli. Thomas was eventually treated for this but had lost some weight from it before he knew what he had. He also toured several spots out West on a graduation trip with a group of friends in May. He woke up with night sweats but thought it was just from sleeping in tents while traveling and camping. Along the way, he picked up a cough (non- Covid) that was also treated but would not clear up. Later in June (on June 23), he was up early and weighed himself and said "wow- I have lost 3 more pounds". We asked him how much he had lost in all and he said 18 pounds (yikes!) (He would eventually lose up to 25 pounds from all of the procedures etc). We suggested that he get in and get an overall healthy ( we thought) check- up and blood work before he left for his consulting job in Boston in the Fall. Thomas had been to this doctor  before when he had been treated for mononucleosis his sophomore year in college. The doctor ran bloodwork and did x- rays and was able to show Thomas the difference in the x-rays from 2 years ago. There was a visible mass underneath his sternum bone in his chest that was not there in the previous x-ray. They both knew that he was dealing with something much larger than what either of them expected. The CT Scan and biopsy the next day (June 24) confirmed what the doctor had suspected that it was Hodgkins Lymphoma. Thomas came home on an oxygen machine for 5 days after complications from the mass during his biopsy and coming off the anesthesia. He had a PET scan in Birmingham and met with the oncologist in town where Thomas's treatments will be administered. (This doctor will work in conjunction with the doctor at MD Anderson).


We flew to MD Anderson and along with the results from the PET scan, the doctor diagnosed Thomas with Advanced Stage Hodgkins Lymphoma ( Stage 4). He said that the mass was 11 cm and very bulky. It extended out on both sides of his sternum bone in his chest and rested right above his heart. Several nodes lit up around his neck and on his spine as well. He would need to be treated with 12 rounds of chemo every 2 weeks for 6 months. At that point , he will be evaluated to see if further radiation will be required (we are praying very hard that this will not be the case).
Although on one hand, it was devastating to hear this diagnosis, on the other hand, it meant that he qualified for a new monoclonal antibody therapy. This is the most recent advancement in treating this type of cancer. It is developed to specifically target the cancer cells and hopefully do less damage to the surrounding organs, cells and tissue. At this time, only those with advanced stages qualify for this.


Thomas has now completed 3 rounds of chemo and will have his 4th round in 2 days (August 25). His main  symptoms have been ulcers in his mouth/tongue, bone pain, head aches, light headedness, stomach aches and extreme fatigue. He lost his hair after the 2nd round of chemo. He generally does not feel well for about a week and then gradually starts to feel better into his second week before he starts again. After his 4th round (which is coming up) , we will return to MD Anderson for a PET Scan and evaluation with his doctor there to see what progress has been made. 


Thomas has had a very positive attitude about all of this and has battled and will continue to battle this courageously. He has been an inspiration to us all!


Overall, we are so thankful for the cough and the weight loss! ( otherwise, we would never have known what we were dealing with) We are grateful that he has graduated, is living at home this summer so we can help take care of him and that he had not moved to Boston and started his full time job yet!


We are standing on several verses: Jeremiah 29:11, Ephesians. 3:20, Mark11:23-24, Romans 8:28, Joshua 1:9, Genesis 50:20, Isaiah 43:2, Isaiah 40:31, Psalms55:22, Isaiah 26:3 and others....read them when you can- they will encourage you!


We are trusting and believing that Thomas will be completely healed and that God has a greater good in all of this. Thank you for standing and believing with us!  We are expecting miracles!
Your friendship, support, meals, cards, flowers and continued prayers mean more to us than you will ever know and we are so grateful for each and every one of you!!
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