I’ve had this update sitting in my back pocket for a couple days now. Remember that post about crazy making? The choice backfired. I read a report without support from the radiation oncologist and the news had me in meltdown largely because it didn’t say the words “no recurrence” and all the rest was gobbeldygook to me. Note: I do not read medicalese and really needed my oncologist telling me what the report meant. I have spoken with her today.
So what’s up? The scan shows a glowing white line in the area that had the tumour removed, which could mean recurrence or it could mean radiation necrosis of brain tissue from where the radiation had been directed. Per my oncologist you cannot distinguish between the two based on just looking at the MRI. In addition to the report, she looked at all the scans, comparing this one to previous ones.
My radiation oncologist is actually hopeful that it’s necrosis because (1) my body CT scan is stable and (2) the brain MRI doesn’t show any growth of the second tumour or new lesions. The important thing is to monitor what’s happening. As Dr. Vallieres put it, she treats the patient, not the scan and I’m showing no symptoms that would lead anyone to think of recurrence (e.g., headaches, paralysis on left side, incontinence). We’ll repeat the MRI sooner than we usually do – at approximately 6 weeks instead of 12 weeks – and we’ll act accordingly then. It’s important that if I do develop symptoms that I get in touch with her immediately.
So, we’re still at one day at a time. It’s all I can do.
But I will sleep better tonight.
Live. Laugh. Thrive.