Monday, August 17, 2009

Goshen Cancer Center

As you know, we went to Goshen Cancer Center today. Really nice place... A bit too cold for us, but very nice. All the people we met were really nice and the doc was good too...
Got there an hour early and filled out paperwork and drank some cold tea. It was funny, this one guy who was there to do chemo/radiation went over, put a little in his cup, and about spewed it out! He was like, OH, UGH, GROSS (I can't even begin to tell you the sounds of grossness coming from his mouth!!! LOL), then he said, I would'nt give this stuff to a DOG!! Then he proceeded to dump the remainder in the trash!!! :O) Gotta love people watching!!! ;o)
Got back to the room, the nurse asked some more questions, took his temp and blood pressure and weight. His BP is still down, but not like it has been.
Then the doc came in, some old fart. ;o) But he was really nice. He told dad that his liver is now the problem. He gave him 2 options.
1) They took some blood to see if he can do clinical/case study. IF his blood work comes back that his liver is healthy enough, then he can do it, ONLY if he can get into it in the next 2 weeks. He explained that they take 3 people and do Gemzar and radiation, then they will watch them for 3 to 4 weeks. IF they respond well, they will take another 3 people and up the doses by a little bit. So if this time around they have their 3 people, dad may not get to do it. The doc doesn't want to wait another 6 weeks to do anything, he wants to get the ball rolling, and so does dad. So for the case study, he would get gemzar (SP?, spelling it how it sounds!) and radiation RIGHT on his liver. The radiation would NOT kill anything that is good in his body, only focus on the liver gunk. ;o) The doc seemed hopeful that dad is "healthy" enough to do the study, but will have to wait for the blood work. He said he would know and call dad tomorrow afternoon with the results.
2) The other option would be to just do the chemo Gemzar. In lower doses that Dr Gize wanted to do. (I am not bad mouthing him, so please don't read it the wrong way...) Dr Gize wanted to do the Gemzar and some pill he would have to take everyday, this doc said that that pill doesn't really work and only gives you an extra 2 weeks, maybe. PLUS, it is pretty expensive, he said it isn't worth it.. The gemzar doses that dad would get would most likely NOT give him upset tummy and loss of hair. I mean, it could happen, but very good chance it won't.
He will also get a port put in him. I guess it's like a pic line, only in his chest area, I think over on the right side? But not 100% sure. There are a couple different kinds, but he will get the best one, where they can do anything and everything through the port! Like take blood, do the chemo, etc.... Since he will be doing the gemzar chemo no matter what, they will put in the port so they don't have to kill his arms by trying to find an IV and then eventually not ever be able to find one! I was told he can even have a milkshake through the port! (But who would want to get one if you can't enjoy the taste??? LOL)
So like I said, the doc said that the liver is his problem. These are just numbers, and we need to remember this, because only God knows when He is going to take us home, but it still is hard! He said that most cases people live 3-6 months, and 10% live a little over 2 years. My dad is going to fight with all he has and be part of that 10%!
Dad is also giving an extra tube of blood to help research, and since it will all be done with the port, no biggie right? ;o) They will send it Canada and they compare dad's blood to those who don't have cancer and do all kinds of tests on it. They listed off some other things that they will compare and test, but don't remember all of it! SO much info! I am kinda glad they only saw the doc and dietitian today, anymore and it would be WAY over-load!!!
So we went upstairs after meeting with the doc, who by the way, did NOT rush anything! (I guess they are through the hospital and are paid salary, so they can take as much time as they need to with each patient, how cool is that?)
Becky, the dietitian, asked dad what he eats for each meal and then said to do pretty much the same thing. She just added a few things. Dad and mom were already doing the vegan diet, kinda. They were eating a tad big of chicken and fish, and they were eating cheese, so not 100% full vegan, but really watching it. Becky told dad he needed to eat more protein, he wasn't getting enough. She told him to drink 2 soy protein shakes per day, like one mid-morning and then mid-afternoon. Also she had the doc prescribed enzymes. He is to have 2 per meal and then 1 at each and every snack, but no more than 10 per day. The enzymes are to do what the pancreas can't do, break his food up and absorb into his body. That's why he isn't gaining any weight, but eating like a cow. (Sorry dad... ;oP) He is to take one pill RIGHT before taking his first bite, then about half-way through his meal he is to take the other one.
One thing dad told Becky was that he was really watching what he ate, as far as yogurt and stuff that is good for him that he needs to eat, but sends his sugar levels through the roof! She said that he needed to eat those things because his body needs them and to ask the diabetic doc to help him out in that area. So hopefully he will be able to help him out!
She also said that probiotics would be good to take...
Becky said she would be with dad every step of the way when he started chemo... She would watch his weight, find out what he needs to eat if anything more, or if he does get sick from the chemo, help him find foods will taste good and keep adding weight.
They go back next Wednesday the 26th to meet with the mental and spiritual people. I am not sure what to call them! :O)
They also have an appointment tomorrow morning with Dr Glad... They met with him 4 weeks ago and the vampires sucked his blood, should be interesting to see what those blood results say... They were going to cancel since they are going to Goshen, but decided to keep this one just to see the blood results...
Planned on going home tomorrow, but Thaddeus was up all nite last nite coughing and I had stuffy nose, so I couldn't breathe to sleep, so will see how tonite goes and play it by ear, may just wait til Wednesday, not 100% sure yet...
Keep praying for mom and dad!!!

1 comment:

Martha said...

My dear Mandy, what a bunch of information to absorb! You do (and have done) a remarkable job of sorting things out. As the patient, I know it's hard to remember everything you hear in these settings, and having another family member there makes it easier. Doing all we can with the information we have, we give ourselves to God who can do more than we can even ask or think! May Jesus continue to be your CENTER. Love you!