Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Quick Note on doctor visit Monday and MRI results

Hey I have been really busy. Yesterday I pressure washed the deck and did house cleaning. It feels good to be back to doing something useful (the steroids).

Anyhow, here is a quick report on my visit. I did not have a captioner (I do not know what happened to her and I hope everything is alright). So I have yet to review the doctors hand written notes to me but here is the jist of things:

YEAH! THE TUMOR APPEARS TO HAVE STOPPED GROWING LARGER! Also, I was corrent in my layman's assessment of viewing the films earlier in that the tumor is definitely dying (showing more blackening from the inside on the MRI film). It will take another 6 months for it to continue through this process of dying before it will stop swelling and collapse in on itself. The tumor will never disappear like cancerous tumors do from chemotherapy. With this type of tumor and condition there is no cure but we can kill tumors with radiosurgery. So what happens is that they sometimes shrink a little when they die but it will always be with me unless I have surgery to take it out.

Okay so what does this mean really? Welll I will be on and off steroids and medication to control the side effects and illness caused from tumor swelling. That is why I was having vision problems and swelling of the optic nerves. The tumor had gotten quite large.

There will be no further treatments until we have resolved the issues with this first tumor. So I will not have radiosurgery again for at least another 6 months or more. It looks like the total treatment time is going to take alot longer than I anticipated as I have 2 more tumors at least to treat at this point. I have other tumors in my head too but they seem to be small and stable so we do not worry about them. We are watching a large meningioma butted up against the treated tumor and another acoustic neuroma on my auditory nerve on the left side. Although the left acoustic neuroma is smaller (about 2 cm), both acoustic neuromas are indenting the brainstem but I do not have a dangerous level of intracranial pressure that would require immediate surgery. There appears to be no cerebral spinal fluid blockage.

It kind of sucked not being able to go to work like my cohort (teaching) but now I am glad for that. There are lots of illnesses going around which would have just hammered me something awful! Plus I would have been under alot of stress as a first year teacher and it is critically important for me to be nursing myself as much as possible during this time. So I am learning to cherish this time off and take it in stride like Martha Stewart (what an amazing woman she is eh? Talk about gaining perspective and perserverence.)

Okay I may revise this post later. I have a busy week here. I am still trying to finish cleaning house today, I have a friend to visit who just had hip surgery, and I am seeing an old friend today who I have not seen in a couple years and going to my asl meetup group. Tomorrow is our turn to host the "guys" poker night. So we are having a St. Patty's day cookout party and my friend Karen (one of my former asl teachers) is coming over to visit with me as her husband is in the poker pool. Friday is also the monthly asl coffee night with the Bellevue Community College ASL club. Phew! I am glad the Silent Games at the center for the Deaf was cancelled for this Saturday night!


Angel said...

Its gonna be so good to see youn tonight! Its been about 3 years that I have not seen you. But I wll begin making an effort to see you at least once a month, if not more due to your's and my busy schedules. I have known you for going on 6 yrs now. It seems like you have a been a part of my family of friends for alot longer, cuz your soul and mine are so familiar. We are *soul sistahs*!!! hahahaha!! See ya tonight sweetypie!

Angel said...
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