Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Results of the scan

Hey everyone

We got the results back from Elsa's scan today. I honestly was convinced that we were going to get bad news. I was just really tired of everyone saying that prayer and well wishes would bring us the answers that we were hoping for. 
Anyways.... we did end up getting good news!! Elsa still has the tumor that the doctors saw in the last scan (about the size of a marble), but it hasn't grown or changed at all from last time. This is good news because it means that the tumor isn't active, or could even be just calcified tissue. WOO HOO. The doctors plan on doing another scan on May 17th, a PET CT scan, of her whole body to see the metabolic activity. She will have to be sedated for that scan, but you gotta do what you gotta do. If that scan shows that the current tumor is inactive and she has no new growths, she will then be declared as in remission. In the mean time we are making arrangements for Elsa's central line to be taken out :) That will be a very exciting day, but it will be a major surgery.

Very exciting news. Hope everyone is doing well.
I'll let you know if anything new comes up with elsa, but I am not really planning on making regular posts. 
Alright Peace

Monday, January 11, 2010


Hey everyone. Elsa had her scan this morning. No news yet. I just wanted to do a quick update to let everyone know that we still don't know anything. 

The scan itself went well. The doctors called us last week and said that they wanted to try to do the scan without sedation, so my mom practiced with Elsa a few times laying down and holding completely still. They ended up being able to do it without the sedation, so at least thats good. 

The doctors told my mom that they would call her this evening when they have reviewed the scan and know what's going on. 

Fingers crossed. I'll update again as soon as I know something.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Final IT

Elsa had her last scheduled I.T. procedure today and everything went really well. At this point it's just a waiting game until her scan. I just wanted to do a quick update to say that everything is going really well with our family.

In case people were wondering, Elsa still has some hair. It is very unusual for chemo patients to have any hair at all and she still has a pretty good amount. (The doctors told us she would lose it in the first 3 weeks)  I was convinced that she still looked normal, but after looking back at pictures from this summer it became glaringly obvious to me that she does not look normal. haha On the bright side, once Elsa starts growing some fuzz it will look like she has a lot more hair than she does at that point because she has all these random stragglers that survived the chemo!
That was a little random, I know, but thats how it is.

Peace out

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Scan Results

Elsa's scan came back with a 1 cm chunk of active cells. This section lit up on the scan as active (which usually means cancer) because there was cell activity in that spot. There is a scale to see how active the tissue is and this tumor read very low on that scale. The doctor called my mom a little while ago and stated the options. There were a lot of them so I won't list them all. The biggest contenders in the decision were surgery to remove the tumor or to wait 6 weeks to do another scan. The risks for doing the surgery were not worth the benefits of taking it out. There is no way for the doctors to know without going in there whether it is cancer or just a tumor at this point. If they take out the tumor it would be risky because it is back behind her intestines. The benefit to waiting is that the doctors will be able to see if the tumor is still growing and changing or if it is just calcified tissue. The conclusion was that waiting the 6 weeks and reassesing the situation would be the best option.
One thing that I was worried about was Elsa's recovery. Every cycle of chemo has been a harder and slower recovery than the last. If Elsa went right back to having chemo regularly again she would have a hard time recovering because her body is so weak. Now that we are waiting before (potentially) having Elsa go through chemo again, there will be a chance for Elsa to recover and get stronger before the next cycle.

January 11th will be the next scan. If it shows that the tumor has grown then Elsa will most likely start chemo right away.
For right now I'm just glad to have a peaceful and hospital free Christmas season
elsa still has a cancerous tumor about 1 cm and we'll have to do about as much chemo as we've already done. i'm at work so i'll update in detail this evening.

Monday, November 30, 2009

scan tomorrow

This is just a quick update but I just wanted to remind everyone that tomorrow is Elsa's scan. 
Over the weekend she had a slight ongoing fever but it never got high enough to require taking her into Lutheran. If we had had to take her in she would have missed the scan because the hospital does not release people until they have been fever free for 48 hours. That was a huge relief. Tomorrow my mom is driving down to Indi and the scan is scheduled for 2pm. We will hopefully know the results of the scan sometime Wednesday.
I'll post as soon as we find out.
Fingers Crossed.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Keep Elsa in your thoughts for her scan Dec 1st

Last week at Riley things went pretty well. It's always good when the doctors don't have a whole lot to talk to you about. Elsa was very active most of the time, but at the end of the week she got a fever for a little while. It's hard because when Elsa is at the hospital she is either tired and sick or crazy and moving everywhere. It's nice to see how quickly she bounces back after not feeling good though, so I won't complain about that. She came home on Sunday evening of the week that she had Chemo. The next day (Monday) she had an I.T. procedure (Chemo in her spine) and that went really well, but that night she started feeling sick. She ended up throwing up four times, but after she started throwing up I went to CVS to fill the prescription that my mom had gotten a few cycles back from Riley. It is a really intense nausea medication for cancer patients and the side effects are really bad, so my mom hadn't wanted to fill the prescription unless she needed to. (Elsa has thrown up a couple times during her treatment, but it has never been a very serious thing.) Anyway, when I went to CVS the guy at the pharmacy counter said that it would be an hour wait to fill the prescription. I told him that the meds were for my sister who has cancer and she was at home throwing up and he told me that he would fill it himself. He had it ready in 10 mins. I thought it was so nice that he would do that because it was really busy in there and he didn't have to do anything special.
That Friday Elsa had a blood transfusion and everything went well with that as well.

Elsa has a scan scheduled for December 1st to check if all of the cancer is gone. There is a chance that there is still some residual tissue. If that is the case they will have to do another biopsy to see if it is cancer or just tissue. If it is cancer then we have to start Chemo again, but if it is tissue then we are done with Chemo. I don't want to get all excited and unrealistic about this because if something shows up on the scan then we still have more to go through. Even if the scan comes back clear, there is still major surgery to remove Elsa's central line.
We aren't quite done with all of this hospital stuff, but hopefully we are getting there soon.