07 December 2010

living with cancer - update

My friend has made it through radiation and chemo treatments. The docs at the VA are getting ready to send him home. Since it is still difficult to eat anything but soft mushy foods [and bland tasting things, at that] he is still "eating" with a j-tube, a plastic feeder inserted into the stomach. Eventually, when removed it will scar over.
     The prognosis is good, albeit guarded. Survival rates for esophageal cancer are not high - however, they are also not unheard of. What is working in his favor is that the cancer had not spread to other parts of the body [that is, it had not "metastasized"] and - when viewing the area by CT Scan in October, the size of the tumor had shrunken significantly.
     He's also lost weight and strength, so he will have to build back up. That he'll have to do through outpatient treatment.
     Then, toward the end of January, he'll go back for another CT Scan and the docs will discuss whether or not surgery is necessary for removal of any remains of the tumor.
     Understandably, he's nervous about the whole process. For those of you who have been supportive from a distance [i.e. providing prayers and wishes for good karmic energies] your efforts are appreciated. Thank you.

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