I have been blessed with terrific and wildly supportive family, friends, and colleagues. Over the last two weeks, friends and family have traveled to the Pacific Northwest and shared time together celebrating the here and now and one another. Through games, adventurous outings (whale watching, kayaking, beach combing, and hikes) we have caught up on each others’ lives and formed new bonds and connections (“snail”, JackBox, wedding vow renewals, and lots of shared meals and conversation). Those that couldn’t travel, we managed to loop in via FaceTime and social media.
As everyone heads home, there is a bit of melancholy and excitement for what’s to come. We have two new babies expected in ~October timeframe, we have new partners joining the extended family, and we welcome the evolving family traditions (“Family Time” rule) and evolving family recipes and meals that are adapting to modern diets and regimens (plant-based whole food, organic, free range, and organic). It’s amazing how we’re all growing and evolving together; separately, thousands of miles apart, but in similar directions.
The cancer battle plan update:
* Shawn and I continue to focus on the basics: diet, exercise, and leading a purposeful life
* In addition, we’re adding Reiki, Mindfulness, acupuncture, professional therapists, and support networks (patient & caregiver). As we continue to learn, there is no one dimension that’s more important and this battle with GBM will be an ever evolving one.
While the recent PET scan was inconclusive regarding tumor progression vs pseudo-progression, it did suggest the chemotherapy (Temodar) appears to be currently working for me (keeping tumor at bay and slowing progression). We’ll consider that a win for now as it buys us time and the opportunity to evaluate treatment options...including Optune (a wearable and portable, FDA-approved treatment that has been shown in clinical trials to safely deliver continuous therapy to the area of the brain where the GBM tumor is located.The Optune device and supporting ancillary items are pictured below for reference.
* Next MRI - August 17. With the MRI we’ll get the next data which will help inform the next phase of treatment.
* Optune Device - 2-3 weeks to receive insurance approvals and start the therapy
FC and enjoy the day,
Darrell & Shawn
Optune delivers therapy through 4 adhesive patches, called transducer arrays. These transducer arrays are applied to your scalp and are connected to the device and battery. It is recommended that you use Optune at least 75% of the time (18 hours per day) to get the best response from treatment. Depending on where you are in your diagnosis and treatment plan, you may need to use Optune along with another therapy or alone.