One would think since the Oncologist is about to become one of the most important people in my life, a little more time and thought would go into meeting/picking this person. Granted we did have a 10 -15 min conversation while I was in the hospital to outline treatment methods at a very high level – but that is it. I’m not sure what I expected but I think I expected a little more from the guy I am going to trust to save my life. It really isn’t unlike calling any service provider and you get the guy/lady that shows up, just like having the carpets cleaned. Who knew the guy would have FTW tats on his forearms and a I Love Mom on his bicep. Here is basically how I ended up with my oncologist:
- Go to Hospital
- Get diagnosed with Cancer
- Have a surgery, and the surgeon tells me the oncologist will cover it from here
Literally more thought goes into picking the guy to cut the yard or fix the clogged toilet.
With all that said I like the guy. He seems to know what he is doing, I like him, and he, my wife, and my family are going to give this thing hell together.
Dr. Thomas Hensing, he’s my guy. He spent an hour with my wife and I today and answered each and every question and generally seemed to care.
As everyone has explained to me, like I needed the explanation, all cancer is bad. However I have received a lot of good news. Although my cancer is stag IV, meaning it is traveling via the blood stream, it has not attacked any other major organs and seems to be centralized. Secondly my type of cancer, Squamous, seems to respond to treatments better than other forms of the disease.
The best news of the day related to the treatment method is that Dr. Hensing has designed a clinical trial that is specifically for people with Squamous Lung Cancer that haven’t previously undergone any form of treatment … Jackpot! The trial involves 24 weeks of treatment using both traditional Chemo therapy and one of the newest forms of treatment immunotherapy.
The Hypothesis of the study is that both Chemo and Immunotherapy work, but for different reasons, and the order of treatment could matter. So the original theory was if doctors can kill some cancer first and then get the immune system to start attacking it the result wold be positive. However through the trials they are finding that it may not matter which comes first. A computer is going to decide randomly how I am going to start, either way I don’t care, I just want to start. So I guess tonight’s agenda involves going through the 27 page consent form. Making fun of all the side effects, and getting it back to the Kellogg Cancer Center as soon as possible. If all goes according to plan looks like next Tuesday morning I will check in for my first trial treatment.
As always I want to thank friends near and far for all the support and prayers. I continue to be overwhelmed by people’s generosity and caring. Special thanks to my wife – Anyone that knows me, knows I can be a hard-headed bastard. When things get tough, I tend to retreat to the comfort of myself and not communicate or share my feelings, and Veronica takes the brunt of that. She is a trooper, holding down the fort, making sure the kids life stays as normal as possible and in the face of the bastard, manages to give me words of encouragement that help with the uncertainty. It was September 9, 2006 that V and I met, I would have never believed that she would be the one at my side for the fight of my life. Thanks V! I love you bunches.