The on-going, first-hand tale of a journey through medical oncology... and what happens after.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

New acronym - NEMD

I have to admit that I have been holding my metaphorical breath for a bit over a week now. On June 25th, I trooped over to my favorite outpatient center to have another CT scan - which we now realize was supposed to happen PRIOR to my six-month follow-up visit to OHSU. Long story short - the fact that my oncologist left OHSU to become a department head in Canada has created some turmoil in the details of my continued participation in clinical trial N0147, and calendars got shifted but key appointments did not. Oh well, this stuff happens.

Fast forward to July 3rd, where we find the hero of our story making a few phone calls to find out the results of the CT scan. Keep in mind that bad news related to cancer travels faster than the speed of light (translation: if there had been evidence of recurrence or metastasis, my phone would have rung the very next day (at the latest)), so I was not as concerned as someone might be in this situation. Still, I proceeded to call everyone that was supposed to have received the report from the latest CT scan, including OHSU, my local oncologist, and my primary care physician. None of them (not one) had seen any report whatsoever. Suffice it to say that, even given my sense of time as outlined above, this caused me some concern - but the story ends happily. The oncology nurse at OHSU promptly called the Imagery Department and had the report faxed to her. She then immediately called me back and read the report.

No evidence of metastatic disease (NEMD)! I have a few persistent cysts in my liver (apparently you do too - they are VERY common) that have not changed in size or position over the last six months. And that's it... from now on I am thinking that being labeled "NEMD" is as good as being "on the mend."

Live strong.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

LiveStrong Challenge 2008

I rode the 40 miles in just over two hours (2h07m) - about 18 mph... not bad for an old guy who was a lot weaker just six short months ago. We also saw Lance Armstrong all over the Nike campus. At about the 35-mile mark I noticed that my legs were markedly wobbly, but that could have been due to the heat too.

I promise to post a more prosaic description later this week, but everything seems to be conspiring against me having any energy/time at the end of the day this week... we are preparing for the annual July 4th feast-and-fireworks extravaganza.