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Oct 22, 2018 Latest post:
Jan 22, 2019
March 15th 2018 was Tom & I’s 15th Wedding Anniversary. On that day he was in Anchorage Alaska, at a urologist office. The week prior he came to me and said he was 95% sure he had testicular cancer by diagnosing himself on the internet along with google. The urologist said the same thing on his 1st visit. They put him through ultrasound, blood work, and CT scan all in one day. Tom was off to work the next day, The Urologist said he’d call as soon as CT scan results are in... the results would tell if Tom could do his two week hitch at work or have to come back right away for surgery. The call came the next day...... the urologist said he needed surgery ASAP. Tom headed back to Anchorage from the North slope where he works. He arranged for me to come to Anchorage, surgery was scheduled for March 21st. After Tom’s orchiectomy he had some more scans done, this is where we found out it had spread into his abdominal lymph nodes... where they then told us Tom would need BEP chemo. The doctors & nurses we had in Anchorage were wonderful to us... they’ll always hold a special place in our heart. Tom completed 3 out of 4 cycles of BEP chemo. When we learned it wasn’t helping, the chemo that is... we went home to our island, after being away for a little over 3 months. We scheduled appointments in Seattle to see some specialists. The soonest we could get in was about a month out... during this time we spent some good quality family time together! Off to Seattle, WA at one point an RPLND surgery was on the table, then Tom’s HCG levels shot up again...surgeon said he’d no longer do Tom’s surgery, that more chemo is needed, 2-4 cycles of inpatient VIP. VIP chemo, was started at Swedish hospital. First cycle goes by, second cycle, we’re told he needs a tandem stem cell transplant, but only if they can get his HCG levels down. That we were looking at 6-9 months of treatment, also after the stem cell transplant, if there was any residual evidence of tumors, they’d still need to do surgery. To remove any thing left over...we bounced around from hotel to hotel, The American cancer association helped here & there, but sometimes they’d put us up in places we couldn’t even afford to eat at. Things were tough...we decided we’d head south to Mayo Clinic in AZ where we have family & friends to help us during this time of need. Coming to AZ we made round trip tickets, not knowing if they’d be able to get us in, in a timely matter, considering before waiting the month of July to see specialists that Tom’s cancer had spread into both lungs and in his neck. The specialists have said Tom has a rare case, of an aggressive type of cancer. Mayo said yes and that they’d be able to keep us on schedule, do to us beating the snow birds... so we stayed. We finished Tom’s 3 rd cycle of VIP chemo here at the Mayo Clinic. We then went right into all the testing needed to start the stem cell collection, as many as nine appointments in one day. Tom’s first stem cell transplant was completed this passed Monday, we had a beautiful blessing over Tom and his stem cells. Everything seemed to be going well, until Tom started having severe abdominal pain. Finally got the ok for CT scans, then Tom had a seizure type spell, then we got them to approve for head to pelvis area for CT. Head CT scan came back clear, Tom has two blood clots in his right lower lobe of his lung. They then also got a ultrasound on his legs that came back clear. Pain comes & goes, on & off... very difficult to watch, finally told them they had to do something for his pain relief. Finally Tom was able to get a morphine pump, to help with his pain. There is some info left out here and there, and maybe not in total order but a short synopsis/update.
My plan is to put updates here daily. Thank you all for playing such a big part in our lives and the continued prayers and support!!!