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Mark Hartman - Journal

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Posted 2020-06-02T02:43:11Z


           It's been a while since I've posted and in this case, that's a good thing. The last two doctor visits with the most recent being last Thursday via teleconference. All has been well with actually a tumor shrinking slightly on the last scan. Way back in 2013 or 14 we had talked to a doctor about removing a tumor on the tracheal branch. He refused to do it because of the danger of the surgery along with the fact that there were many other infected nodes in the same area as well. I asked about those same ones the other day and the doc said they don't show any sign of cancer in them which was great news.[...]

Posted 2019-10-08T02:45:31Z


So I saw my doc last Monday Sept. 30th. First is always labs and they all came back great and then came the scan results. Results were excellent including one particular tumor on my trachea branch which was of major concern two years ago. After my initial treatment that tumor shrunk a lot and on these last scans, it shrunk some more. 2 years later and tumors are still shrinking? There is no doubt that all of this is a God given gift but why me is still the big question. A friend from church is struggling terribly after about a year and a half of fighting throat cancer. Another class mate from high school is dealing with stage 4 pancreatic cancer and my wife and I were honored that he wanted us to know before others because of how we have treated him in the past, which is as Jesus taught us, love thy neighbor. Survivors guilt? Yep, it's alive and well as is the age old question of "what did I do to deserve the good fortune while others who are seemingly better people than me, are taken too early. It's all in God's plan which someday we may get to have a small glimpse at. [...]

Posted 2019-05-31T00:27:56Z


Last session I took off and didn't write anything but will catch up tonight. So, at the end of January we saw the doc and got good news of stable tumors with 1 or 2  having minor shrinkage. The shrinkage was insignificant and really not worth reporting although, the results were.[...]

Posted 2018-09-24T02:41:33Z


        Last Thursday I went to see my doctor after having scans done the Friday before. Seems like I know everyone that works at the place I get scans now except when they bring in a newbie. I say hi to all of them and some even stop by to say hi if they are busy when I am going in. There is goodness and sadness to this but mostly goodness because of the new friendships I have made and knowing that they really care and are happy to see someone doing okay after all this time.[...]

Posted 2018-06-24T01:35:50Z


          Thursday morning we met our new doctor after having scans on Wednesday morning. They were originally scheduled for last Friday but both Annette and I came down sick Thursday and I was in no shape to go in Friday so we re-scheduled. Everything in the office was rather odd but yet very professional. Odd to us as the nurses went about business as normal as always but for us, it was different. To them, they just kept the office operating as it always had even with a new man in charge.[...]

Posted 2018-03-24T03:03:15Z


     Saw the doctor Monday which turned out to be very bittersweet. We went over results which were mostly stable with some slight shrinkage on adrenal tumors. My numbers on my thyroid hadn't changed so he upped my dosage again until we get it right. My pancreas numbers were elevated too but most likely due to the drugs and we were told not to be concerned about this right now. Other than that, the rest of my labs were within normal range. All good news.[...]

Posted 2018-01-06T16:31:03Z


           Well, I had scans on the 27th of December per trial protocol and now will wait 60 days for the next ones. There is another set after that but was told 100 days so I don't know if that means from the last scans or 40 days after the last, I'm guessing 100 from the 60 day scans but you never know. These trials can have some funny rules in fact I had a biopsy on the 20th of December that was unexpected but handled easily. The doctor said it would be harder since she had such a smaller target to work with.[...]

Posted 2017-12-06T05:03:12Z


      We had a follow up visit with doc on Monday afternoon to go over last Mondays scans and take care of some other business with the trial. I had gotten the chest ct results on Friday but not the abdomen until early Monday morning. We still needed blood work and to finalize or end the trial dosing phase. Annette's eye appointment was in the morning so we had a long day in Cbus and were tired when we got home but always learning something at our visits.[...]

Posted 2017-11-21T01:01:46Z


    Miracles or God's answer to prayers or His will, which do you believe? With my last post I described my last not so good experience and all the bad that came with it, and it was bad. We went back to the doctor today for what would have been the third dose of chemo drugs but turned into something much different. A lot of discussion was  allotted to the sickness, the cause and so on. Also discussed was the high dose of steroid I am on now , likely 30 days minimum, and the different things that come with that which are too numerous to mention but very much a struggle. I was full of questions and my doctor was ready with all the answers and many scenarios for the future were discussed.[...]

Posted 2017-11-12T23:56:56Z


      So my dosing started on 10-9 and was easy peasy with no immediate problems. On 10-14, Saturday, I had some celery and peanut butter for breakfast and started feeling ill about an hour later. The rest of the day consisted of diarrhea and nausea which turned into worse towards the evening. Sunday was on and off diarrhea and still nauseated but not sick. Loss of appetite followed and things pretty much remained that way for the next 3 weeks. I was thinking food poisoning or ecoli  or even a bug of some type going around, never the drugs. We were told that immodium wouldn't touch diarrhea if were related to the drugs but it was working so again, not the drugs and had lost 4 pounds the first 3 weeks. On the 30th we went down for the second dosing and nothing new with the nivo but started to get a headache or the start of one a short time into the ipi. Got home and nothing major until about 7 pm when I got a severe pain in my lower right gut which lasted until Thursday morning. Appetite is now completely gone and not eating hardly anything, nausea is horrible. I am in contact with my oncologist's staff daily looking for solutions and know i have a blood draw the following Monday and hope i can make it that long. Am checking weight daily and continually dropping, feeling weaker and realize I can't continue like this. I make it to Monday's blood draw and they had cleared a spot to see me. Doc says he still isn't convinced it's the drugs but says the only way to find out is to admit me. He's very concerned that I'm alone but I thought it was a blood draw, not this. I agreed and want this fixed, I have lost an additional 6 pounds. Admitted to the new James, 20th floor looking south but who cares, I feel like crap. [...]