Saturday, May 22, 2010

05.22.2010 - Two Weeks Post Op

I had my third craniotomy of the right temporal lobe and the neurosurgeons removed all of the new growth. It had doubled in size since that MRI on 04/13/2010 where my neurooncologist and I had discovered it. It was still pretty small though. The incision site has healed very well and there is little visible swelling that remains. The surgeons used dissolvable stitches instead of staples this time. It looks a lot better post-op than staples did the last two times. I was conscious after surgery really quickly. They released me from the hospital before I should have and I had a lot of seizures at home, which meant I had to return to resolve that issue (adjusting seizure medications).

After I was released again, the pain was difficult to manage. I am able to manage the pain now, but did not expect to still be taking strong pain killers so long after surgery. No one seems to know why I have the pain, but at least it is getting better.

We saw the neurooncologist yesterday and developed a treatment plan. I will have to get a port, which seemed scarier than it actually is after I learned more about the procedure. A port is a permanent place where I can receive chemotherapy drugs and can have blood drawn from. It is a big deal to get one, but it should reduce the number of future needle sticks that I will have in the future. The time line for when treatment should end is indefinite right now. We will just go from MRI scan to MRI scan and see how I am doing. I will be taking a few different chemotherapy agents and biologics. I received my first dose of chemo that day, something called Navelbine.

My neurooncologist also thought I would be appropriate for an experimental clinical trial of a brain tumor vaccine. We will see if he can get me into that program.