Sunday, February 3, 2013

Decisions, Decisions

I have to apologize for the longer than normal delay in my getting around to making this post after my last visit to UCSF in January. With your full understanding that I've never been one to make a long story short, let me try my feeble attempt to make a short story short.

So what would you do if you were in my position?  I'd appreciate your opinions and input on this matter.  If you've read the blog you know pretty much all that's gone on with the cancer thing. I've been off the daily chemo for 8 months now.  The side effects have subsided to some degree.  The good news is that my kidney function took a big jump in the last 2 months and has improved about as much as it ever will.  My liver is improving as well, but more slowly.  Intestinal tract not improving much at all.  6-7 nausea trips to the bathroom is a good day.  8-12 a normal one.  12+ a bad one.  But, I don't expect it to be worse if I go back on the daily chemo.  The neuropathy and chemo brain have also not improved, but I was told that it likely wouldn't BEGIN to improve until I'm off the chemo for at least a year. I couldn't begin to describe all of the side effects but they would all be effected.  The blood work indicates that the cancer COULD come back, perhaps in a big way like the first time, at any time, perhaps not.  Because I've lived longer than expected anyway, we're in uncharted waters here. 

Here's the dilemma... do I go back onto the "new and hopefully improved with possibly less drastic side effects" daily chemo in hope of  keeping the cancer from going metastatic (or as Dale calls it, "ballistic") again; or do we continue to wait it out hoping that the cancer doesn't go ballistic for a while, but which would likely require pounding it into submission with the big infusions to get it under control, then doing the daily chemo?

Some people have been able to go years without chemo and without it coming back.  Because of the nature of mine, the Drs. don't think that's the case for me, but they admit that they don't know because I'm the only one who's had it as bad as I did and survived. 

So...I know how I'm leaning.  I'd like to hear what you think.  Thank you for your continued love and support.


  1. This is where the phrase, "between a rock and a hard place" really fits. When you say "new and hopefully improved" daily chemo, were you serious that it is new and possibly improved? Or is it the same stuff you took before? If it truly is new maybe you won't suffer the same side effects you had before with it. (Or will it trash your kidneys and liver as I think it did before?) Anyway, there is no easy answer, as you know. I think you and your family need to weigh your side effects now with the side effects you had on chemo and decide which gives you the best quality of life. When people refer to "battling cancer", I think you know what they're talking about! I wish I was smart enough to give you intelligent advice. I'm just in awe of the way you've handled all the ups and downs over the past few years. My prayers for you continue.

  2. Kevin, I don't think it could have been better said than Kendra's post. I agree with her words. You are in my prayers dear friend.

  3. Dunno. I could not imagine this kind of a choice. Our family will continue to pray for you and yours. Love you!

  4. Wow, if you ever needed guidance from above it is now! It sounds like IF the cancer comes back your body may not be able to handle it or the treatments. But do you disturb a sleeping giant that you don't know if you have killed ? On your knees once again huh,

  5. Wow...kinda curious what you decided. My opinion is you know what is best. That's between you and our Father in Heaven. All I know is the Earth is still lucky to have you! You are a wonderful man and an inspiration to us all!!