Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Surgery Update

I'm going to follow Amy's example and add a picture of David each time I post as well.
David has now been scheduled for surgery on Friday, March 25 at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. Yesterday when we met with Dr. Jensen, I could sense David' sense of relief and also his confidence with this new doctor and I think that makes a huge difference. I will just briefly highlight some of the conversation for your information

* Everything Amy said about the functioning MRI is correct. If David's language/memory/speech area is outside of the tumor, then Dr. Jensen will just remove the tumor. If that same area is a little inside the tumor, the Dr. will remove as much of the tumor as he can and try to leave the language area alone. If the tumor is right on top of the language area, then the Dr. will do what he called "a careful biopsy," meaning he would take just a small amount of the tumor to confirm the diagnosis and hope for good results from radiation and chemotherapy.

* When asked about David's prognosis, he said that he had patients with this kind of cancer from level 1 to level 4 and their average survival rate is 2 years - which gave David much hope. He also told us that he had some patients that were 4 and 5 years out with that same kind of diagnosis, but he did not tell us what stage they were at when they began the treatment.

* Dr. Jensen will do the surgery, but Dr. Coleman will be the oncologist overseeing the treatments after surgery. He is quite renowned for his skill and Dr. Jensen told us he was the only neuro-oncologist in the state of Utah. All of this was comforting to David.

We will keep you posted as things progress. David has his functioning MRI on Friday the 18th, his pre-surgery admittance tests on Thursday, the 24th and surgery on the 25th. He had a bad headache this morning, but his headaches seem to lessen throughout the day. Other than that he is in no pain and is very comfortable - thanks to those who have helped in the purchase and arranging for a very nice leather recliner (Nina, Amy, Abbie and Andy.) I know he will appreciate this more and more every day.

Thank you all for your emails, prayers, food, financial support and help at home. Did I tell you how wonderful it was to have all of the family home this past weekend? They are such a comfort to us and they are such kind loving people. Little Crew (almost 3) asked David if he was sick and David told him yes and Crew asked "In your head?" David said it was and Crew said, "That's okay, Grandpa David, my daddy will give you a blessing," and cheerfully scampered away. Our five little grandsons are so precious to us and we are so glad to have them around.

We'll keep you updated.

All of my love,


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