Monday, August 10, 2009

No Clinical Trials

Much has happened regarding my MIL's cancer diagnosis in the last week, so I'll try to post a brief update:

* The oncologist is more optimistic than the first doctor (a radiologist I think) that my in-laws spoke to. He said it is treatable. However, he expects my MIL to go through a cancer/treatment/remission/cancer cycle for the rest of her life. However, they are going to fight every cancer and explore treatments to prolong the periods of remission. He also said it was possible that they could do this for many years to come. So he was not thinking in terms of months, as we were, but in years.

* Chemo treatments have been developed that are more effective against liver cancer than previous ones were. This is particularly good news because she did not qualify for the two clinical trials they tried to get her in. We are sad about this because the clinical trials were for a pill form of chemo that did not have the bad side effects of traditional liquid chemo.

* She had a medi-port inserted surgically this morning. She begins her first dose of chemo and gene therapy on Friday. Last time she had chemo, she had to have a certain number of doses, then they stopped. This time she will keep going with the chemo once every three weeks until the liver is cancer free or until they are convinced that the chemo is not doing anything. The gene therapy she will receive once a month for the rest of her life. (Fortunately this drug has next to no side effects.) She will lose her hair and have the immune system side effects of the chemo with this round (suppressed ability to fight off illness, flu-like aches and pains) but supposedly no nausea.

Thanks for all the prayers!

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