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Catch-up 2: Dad status update

I posted this to another popular social media site, but thought it might be worth putting here, too.

While I was home in Seattle, several people asked about how my father was doing, which made me think perhaps I should provide a more general update. All in all, 2016 was an eventful year. Early in the year, a follow-up monitoring MRI scan indicated that a small liver tumor had reappeared - I believe it was one that the liver surgeon was unable to find during his prior liver surgery or ablation procedure because chemotherapy had shrunk it. At that stage, the most appropriate action was "wait and rescan," which is what my parents did. Well, in the subsequent scan, there was an agonizing period where it sounded like another new liver tumor had appeared. My dad's oncologist said this suggested his cancer was incurable, so he would be shifting from "cure" mode to "care" mode and would start chemotherapy again. But then in another follow-up shortly thereafter, they discovered that this second tumor was actually the original one. Someone had misread the MRI. So he had a second tumor ablation procedure (they stick in a probe and fry the tumor), and no more chemotherapy. They haven't found anything new this fall, and he has recovered a lot of strength and energy in this post-chemotherapy era.

Having a close friend or family member go through this sort of health situation is challenging, but as some have pointed out, it can also be an occasion to realize gratitude. I am grateful to have a supportive community, and to have a chance to share at least one positive story for 2016. Also, hug and visit your loved ones every chance you get. :^)


..and as a brief follow-up, my Mom notes his next scan will be in February. I think it's important to recognize that if a person goes through an experience like my father's, there simply won't be a return to life as it was before the diagnosis. One lives with the spectre of the thing, which simply reinforces the notion that one must make the most of the present.



( 2 remarks — Remark )
Dec. 29th, 2016 04:49 am (UTC)
Oogh that's a stressful year, but I'm glad to hear that at least right now it looks like a good outcome.
Dec. 29th, 2016 11:31 pm (UTC)
That had to be a roller coaster ride. I am glad to hear it ended up on the side of good news.
( 2 remarks — Remark )

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