Today we met with Dr Alex Read. She reviewed the results of the tumor biopsy and the colonoscopy. The tumor in the colon is pretty nasty- it is 1 inch by about 3 inches in the same area where the original biopsy occurred last October. The picture on the left shows the colon with the tumor on the bottom of the picture and you can see it extending off into the distant colon. The concern is that while this is not a new tumor colon-8.jpgbut rather an extension of the liver tumor, it has grown in the presence of the chemotherapy treatments we have had over the last year. It appears this part of the tumor is resistant to Taxol and Carboplatin. This obviously creates quite an urgency to remove this part of the tumor.

Dr. Read spent a lot of time talking to Dr. Darlene Barr about my case and she has agreed to review my case and we will meet with her next Wednesday at 11AM. I asked Alex about Dr. Barr and she said she is one of the best, worked in the tumor unit at UW. If Dr. Read needed surgery she would select either Dr. Jorge Reyes or Dr. Darlene Barr.

Now for the hard part. I asked Dr Read what would the next steps be if Dr. Barr refused to operate, would it make sense to go to Johns Hopkins. She said “You don’t need to go that far, you could go to University of San Francisco or UCLA Medical Center. But, if both Jorge and Darlene are not willing to operate I think that would be it- others may agree to operate but if these two excellent and aggressive surgeons are not willing to operate, this indicates that the cancer is inoperable.” Needless to say that puts a lot of pressure on our meeting next week. Without surgery the chemo is unable to remove the cancer or even hold it in remission so the outcome short term and long term is not good. If we can remove the section of the colon with the tumor and the liver which contains the tumor (75%+ of the liver), the chemo will be able to hit the rest of the cells. That is assuming I have a fast enough recovery to quickly get back on chemo.

We have not had a CT scan since I resumed chemo and added Tarceva. This will occur in a few weeks and may surprise us in a good way. There is nothing we can do at this point but to trust God and live life with passion and joy (what’s new!). In that vein Heather and I are flying to Kauai on the 13th of September returning on the 22nd. Johnny will be in Germany and Bo will be back in school at Roosevelt. We will be celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary and staying both on the north and south end of the island. Needless to say, we are pretty excited.

I ask you to pray for our meeting next Wednesday with Dr. Barr. That she would have wisdom and discernment in reviewing my case and that God’s will be done. Trusting God regardless of the outcome physically has become our routine so I would also ask that we are able to accept the results, regardless of the news. If we are to continue to fight and look at Johns Hopkins or UCLA, that this would be clear as well.

Thank you for your prayers and words of inspiration. We need them now more than ever.

God is good, all the time, God is good!

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4 Comments so far

  1. Randor on August 30, 2007 9:20 pm

    Hi Don, I am in the last stages of Malibu prep. Many have already gone and will meet us at the Priness. We will be praying for you and the upcoming decisions. May the direction be clear and may the doctors come up with a plan that has great success! I know it has been a long road, but don’t give up! God is Good, All the Time, God is Good!


  2. stan on August 30, 2007 10:47 pm

    Yes, Don…hang in there and we will keep praying for God to clarify your situation and use you to the fullest for His glory. Amen.

    in Him, we cheer…for you on the road to recovery….


  3. hdrake on August 31, 2007 12:16 pm

    Hey Don,

    You know what I will continue to do, along with many others, and that is pray to our soverign Lord. Try not to worry about next week’s meeting and enjoy your time in Hawaii.

  4. abdoulaye sarr on August 31, 2007 3:43 pm

    Absolutly Don we will be praying for you along with all my family and friend in Senegal and here for an answer and peace .
    Our Lord has the answer and he will provide it, because He always take care of his people and you are one of HIS ,do not worry about the meeting next week everything is going to be just fine.

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