Saturday, September 6, 2008

Sean's Update

Sorry for the roller coaster ride everybody but I have another update. Apparently my surgeon jumped the gun and things aren't as bad as he made them seem. He came in the room and basically told me that there was cancer he could not get to during the surgery and that I still have it. He said I will need more chemotherapy, possibly radiation, and further surgery. As you read in previous posts I was talking about going to Indiana to try and deal with this because of their reputation for treating testicular cancer.

Well, yesterday I had an appointment with Dr. Chandramouli and he said that Dr. Childs (my surgeon) spoke too soon. He ran further analysis and looked at the pathology results of the tissue they took from my abdomen. That last little area that Dr. Childs couldn't get to actually shows no evidence at all of any yolk-sac cancer being present. There is no reason to think that I have cancer right now so... yay :)

What is left is most likely either scar tissue or teratoma. Teratoma is kind of complex but basically it's a local tumor growth that can grow within itself but is not a danger to survival. If it grows too much it can cause discomfort just from its size. If I do have teratoma and it is growing I may need another surgery somewhere down the road. Here's a link for more info on teratomas:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teratoma

The definition of teratoma given is pretty broad and probably will not help you understand what I'm talking about that well. There are bad types of teratomas that it talks about but the kind I might have is not dangerous.

The plan now is to contine to monitor my blood markers and do routine CT scans to make sure that the cancer stays away. Hopefully it does because the next step is salvage chemotherapy and stem cell transplants (ugh....). I have THE authority on testicular cancer aware of my case and giving advice on it though so I feel confident that I'm getting the best there is. Dr. Einhorn in Indiana is in direct contact with Dr. Chandramouli and is ready to see me should anything else happen. This is the guy that Lance Armstrong went to. He is the only reason I have a chance to beat this in the first place. Here are some links about him, pretty impressive:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Einhorn
http://www.iuinfo.indiana.edu/homepages/3-3-2000/text/einhorn.htm
http://jop.ascopubs.org/cgi/content/full/1/4/167

I'm feeling almost tip top again and things are well. Thank you for all the prayers, thoughts, and help you have given me. It was great to see so many of you at the wedding. You helped to make the day truly special for Karen and I. If you have any questions e-mail me at seans_mailbox@hotmail.com

Lots of love,
Sean

3 comments:

Carl and Mel said...

Sean that is really good news!!! Thanks for informing us! And take care of yourself!

Ann Marie said...

Thanks for keeping us all updated! You are in our thoughts alot!
Think good thoughts!

Anonymous said...

I have been lurking teamxbox for some time. Must say you are an inspiration to many. Well spoken, brave, a fighter.

You have shown great presence with your words during this difficult situation. I believe many have been touched by you.

Well done. We should all strive to put forth the courage and conviction you have.

CP