Friday, August 14, 2009


Mom's radiotherapy session has been moved to 3:20PM today. The machine is once again acting up.

Dr. Tonnesen had told us that, if we were to stop the radiotherapy right now, with several more sessions to go, he wouldn't think we were crazy. The neoplasm has shown robust growth in spite of the radiation, which means the radiation and chemotherapy have been ineffective. From the doc's point of view, therapy isn't worth continuing.

Last night, I asked Dad whether he wanted to see the in-tandem therapy through. He said he did. That's fine by me. It's a bit like defending yourself from a tiger with nothing more than a wet noodle as a weapon, but if the idea is to go down fighting, then I approve.

Dad has sent data down to MD Anderson and has also talked with the National Cancer Institute about Mom, updating the respective offices of Dr. Conrad and Dr. Fine as to Mom's condition and the cancer's progress. MD Anderson requested the most recent data from Dad, so yesterday he went to the local Kinko's/FedEx, burned a copy of the MRI CD-ROM, and sent the copied CD plus the 2-page written report from July 20th down to Texas. He also spoke with Dr. Conrad this morning; Dr. Conrad said he had seen the data and agreed that the situation was dire. His recommendation would be Avastin therapy as a second-line treatment, but he also recommended that Dad talk with Dr. Fine at NCI-- "He's the guy" for this sort of thing, according to Dr. Conrad.

NCI said it wanted more than just the most recent data, so Dad is once again out, burning CDs and prepping a copy of the massive, 700-page collection of doctors' reports and notes from Fairfax Hospital, this time for NCI's Dr. Fine. Dad will then drive over to NCI himself to make sure the information is delivered today.

This leaves me to take Mom to the hospital alone. Luckily, she's ambulatory, so today, this won't be a big problem. Mom and I can drive to the hospital and walk in together. If it turns out, for some reason, that Mom is suddenly weak, we've got a wheelchair in the van.


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