Friday, August 7, 2009

Good News - Good News

Hi All,
I have got lots of news – in fact so much that I will break this up into more than one entry. I hate to overwhelm anyone with too much information at once.

I’ll start with the best news – I had CT scans this week to check my progress after 60 days on Nexavar and I found out


The doc showed me the scans compared to the one they took in June and you can definitely see that the tumors have shrunk, some by as much as 1/3. You can see this definitely in my lungs and in the soft tissue areas surrounding my lungs. I could not have asked for better news after less than 60 days! I inquired about the bone tumors but was told these lesions do not show very well on scans so monitoring their progress is difficult at best. But logic says that if the soft tissue tumors are shrinking why wouldn’t the bone tumors be doing the same thing? I’m going with that theory. The scan report did say that one of the lesions in the sciatic vertebrae is very close to spinal cortex. Let’s hope that baby is shrinking so we don’t have any more pain issues in the spine.

So the plan is continue on the same course and see if we get more good news in another 60 days. The side effects seem to come and go. The last week or so I have had terrible stomach issues so the doc prescribed yet another medication for me. Pretty soon I am going to have to add an extra cabinet in the bathroom to hold all these meds.

A side note about Nexavar. I received the benefit explanation from my insurance company for the cost of this drug. I was blown away - it breaks down to over $48 per pill! You don't want to drop one of those down the drain! I take 2 pills a day so the cost is close to $3000 per month. Some people would use this information to pontificate about the "crooks running the drug companies " but I have seen the tremendous amount of money it takes to get through the approval process. Until the drug is approved for more uses they have to charge enough to cover the expense. I say a prayer of thanks that there are companies willing to do this research and make a very long term investment.

Enough editorializing. I can’t tell you how happy I am to share this news with you. You have stuck with me through a lot of bad news and lousy test results so it is especially sweet to give you some good stuff. Thanks again – I am truly blessed to have so many friends pulling for me.

I'll be back to you soon. Next issue – more good news!