Monday, January 04, 2010

Playing Doctor

This is going to be a busy week and I might not get to post again for a while. Tomorrow is the only day Reid doesn't have to be down at MD Anderson. On Thursday, January 7th he needs to be there at 7:00 AM and has appointments all day. His last is at 3:00 PM. I don't know what all of the stuff is on his schedule, but it reads like this:

7:00 AM Blood/Specimen Collection
8:45 AM Chest, PA & LAT
9:00 AM Check-in/Prep for CT Exam
11:00 CT Scan, Lymphoma Screening
1:00 PM Pet Prep-Do not east for 6 hours
1:30 PM PetCT Injection & Localization
3:00 Pet Lymphoma Restage

I believe the Lymphoma Restage at 3:00 is the most important one. This is the Pet Scan where they'll be able to see how much progress is being made with the chemo treatments.

I'm no doctor, although I do play one at my computer screen. :)

Here's the image of a normal chest X-ray that I found out on the Internet.

And this is Reid's X-ray taken on October 13, 2009.

You don't have to graduate from medical school to know that you're looking at an abnormal chest X-ray. In fact, according to the doctor's notes (a real doctor...not me) you're looking at an 18.6 cm anterior mediastinal mass. The mass pushing on his lungs is what caused the dry cough that was originally thought to be bronchitis. Reid still has the cough, but it's not as bad as it was when this X-ray was taken. He also still has a weak voice. He's unable to speak loudly or shout and this is also due to the mass.

Now, here is the good news. From what I've read about Hodgkin's Lymphoma most of that mass is not cancer. The cancer is just a very small part of the mass. The rest is inflammation and other cells.

The chemo should be shrinking the whole darn ugly thing. Hopefully, when he has his doctor's appointment on January 8th we'll be told that the mass is significantly smaller.

This is such a busy week and yesterday I realized I was coming down with a cold. In spite of almost continuous hand washing and hand sanitizing (Howie Mandell would be so proud of me) I've somehow caught a cold. Now I'm hoping Reid doesn't catch it. I don't know what would happen if he did, but I'm assuming it would delay this week's chemo. Rats! I don't even remember when I last had a cold, but it was probably some time last winter. It's not a bad cold and hopefully it will be gone before he or my husband have a chance to catch it.

I'd better get busy. The cats want to be fed and they're walking across the keyboard and standing in front of the computer screen to get my attention.

Thank you for your warm thoughts and prayers on Reid's behalf.


  1. My thoughts are with you, as always, here in Sicily. xx

  2. Hello Betty,
    Visiting you from Welshcakes blog, one of my favourite reads!
    I am sorry to learn of your son's illness and pray that he soon recovers.
    I am enjoying reading your blog, I too am very much a 'cat lady', we have one very spoiled cat called Chloe.
    Best wishes to you and your family for 2010, from a snow covered Liverpool UK.


  3. Wow. That x-ray is very sobering to look at. Hopefully it is different by now.


Thank you for taking the time to visit my little world and leave a comment. I appreciate hearing from you.

I do not receive all comments by E-mail and I'm not exactly sure why. I do try and remember to check the actual blog so I won't miss any of your comments.

I do not belong to Google+ and regret that I am unable to leave comments on Google+ blogs.

WORD VERIFICATION: I have NOT set up word verification for comments. However, every so often it appears on my blog even though I have chosen NO in the settings. Please let me know if you encounter word verification when leaving a comment so I can try and fix it. Thanks.