Friday, June 13, 2008

back on the table

Martha and I went to Motol yesterday for my oncology appointment and subsequent operation(s) – it was a lot of fun! Martha even managed not to yell at anybody. Wednesday’s blood tests had me a platelet away from not having the operation(s): WBC 5.1, PLT 140. In addition to the blood results, I got my prescriptions refilled: hundreds of dollars worth of medication for just a few crowns.

I complained of recent foot/ankle/knee trouble – basically, trouble walking – and she chalked it up to the chemo. I’m unfortunately in a physical stasis since chemo began (shortly after a very lengthy and sedentary hospital stay), as I have trouble growing new cells – the actual goal of chemotherapy. I’m walking (and dancing) a lot more than I was in the hospital and can’t keep up with myself anymore (or yet).

We went down the hall to the operating theater and they saw us immediately: my smiley, polyglot dermatologist in full surgical garb and her terse nurse, who spoke of me in the third-person. They removed all three suspicious ‘spots’ (arm, collar, left leg behind knee) and surrounding tissue, using five stitches total. The local anesthetic injection(s) - some sort of ‘caine - was the only bit that hurt. I made Martha watch – she said it was “pretty gross” - again, no photos, sorry. The whole thing took less than 30 minutes.

I’ll have the stitches (they itches) out on the 23rd of June and get the histology by July 11th at the latest (melanoma anyone? prostate cancer of the skin? place your bets!). I’ll probably begin radiation on the lung and lymph nodes on or around the 21st of July, following two more (and hopefully last) chemo cycles: the next to begin on Wednesday after blood tests on Tuesday.

I should be relatively free from almost daily treatment obligations by the very end of August and hope to be able to leave the country for awhile. Take the show on the road, as it were. Thanks a lot for all your motivational comments. They are very much appreciated.


Anonymous said...

Stitches which itches,
Need patches, not scratches.

Love- Mom

Pamela said...

Come visit us on your post-op USO tour. I only know one person with as much energy as you have--and he's two. He loves to dance and sing, so you two could always hit up The Duplex for a rousing duet of "Landslide". He'll even let you sing lead vocals.

So glad you got the moles off finally. You have so much to look forward to in August! You're doing great!

Love from Dublin (I'm here for a few days). Will save you some potatoes.

Anonymous said...


Just want to give you the name of a clinic in Germany which a friend of mine went to - it specialises in cancer treatment combining traditional and alternative medicine - It's near Munich so not too too far and has a very good reputation.

xo Camille

Antiquated Tory said...

One thing about your melanoma: if McCain wins the election, at least you'll have something in common.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to be so lamely MIA buddy, though I've been keeping up with the funny and painful and painfully funny dispatches you'e been gracing us with. I had some miscellaneous stuff to send off to you- I can assume the address you posted back in March is still valid? Anything in particular you could use?

Glad you were able to get your procedure done- and it sounds like you'll be able to make it a moveable feast in August- fabulous. Watch them pesky platelets: you might want to keep the beard and lose the aspirins (you know all that stuff anyway...)

Okay- will be more in touch-


Anonymous said...

Hi glad to hear that things are happening and it seems very quickly, hope the chemo doesn't last much longer. Off to San Fran, will call you from Anissa's skype over the weekend. Ann

Destination Unknown said...

Hey Mike... I just saw this and thought it might be of interest...

Anonymous said...

Hello Mike,

Jeff just sent me a different article with the same news...

It does sound interesting..

New home on the island is a perfect internet, n o signal. Got to do something about that.. :)

lots of love,