These weeks seem to go by faster and faster..
2nd Opinion by Advanced Medical
One of the benefits I took advantage of from my employer was a free 3rd party evaluation of my diagnosis and treatment plan. It is a really great service for anyone going through a medical crisis. I was connected with a representative (and PhD) who discussed my diagnosis and offered advice on what questions to ask my health professionals. Post initial interviews they gathered copies of my medical records, lab results, and office notes and supplied them to team of doctors specializing in Pancreatic cancer for review.
I really wasn’t sure what to expect, but was pleasantly surprised when we received a very comprehensive report. The good news is the treatment plan was inline with their recommendations. What caught my eye though was my CA 19-9 numbers.
My initial Cancer Antigen 19-9 (CA 19-9) that I posted in WEEK 2 entry was 21,946 U/ml (Normal range is 0-40 U/ml). Within the report we received it was documented that my CA 19-9 numbers were retested at Columbia University and the # was drastically different. The report stated the actual number was over 245,000 U/ml??? WTF !!! Was there a missing decimal point? How can my numbers go up hat much in just a couple weeks.
We discussed with my oncology team and confirmed there was a test early on that was that high. To be sure they scheduled to have my CA 19-9 checked again prior to my 3rd treatment.
UPDATE Post treatment 3 results: 223,969.9 U/ml (numbers are down but still high). Keep in mind that these numbers don’t necessarily define the severity, but is a way for doctors to see if treatments are working. The only true way is to visually see it on an MRI or CT Scan
August 28,2019 - 3rd Round
The night before treatment I spoke with Dr. Bates. She explained that she wanted to increase the dosage of Irinotecan (The IRIN in FLOFIRINOX).
Treatment went really well. I didn’t have any additional side effects than I have previously reported. Most importantly we figured out that the clinic is really a first come first serve process. So, we got to the hospital by 730am and were in by 900am. This is great to know, because it allows me to get the pump off earlier on Fridays.
Getting Ready for Round 4 on 9/11
Tomorrow is my 4th treatment. Lori and I will be headed into NYC early in the morning. Tonight I’m not actually thinking about the chemo, but rather tomorrow is a day that changed American’s forever.