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Health Update - RonO's Ramblings

Feb. 24th, 2010 06:47 pm Health Update

As previously reported, I had an MRI on Monday. Today (and tomorrow) I had a nuclear full body scan.

This test consisted of three parts, the third tomorrow morning. The first part consisted of me taking two pills, that (I'm pretty sure) contain a mildly radioactive isotope of iodine, and then I was sent home for several hours.

The second part was the actual scan. I'm pretty sure that the scanner was looking for decay particles from the iodine, which tends to get taken pretty quickly into thyroid tissue. So, this indicates pretty much where there is thyroid tissue. The third part will be a repeat of this after a day for the body to metabolize the iodine further.

This morning (actually between the first and second part of the exam), I got a call from the Endocrinologist I've been working with. The MRI showed that there was a fair amount of remaining thyroid tissue on the right side.

When my thyroid was removed, it was already quite large (6 CM), and there was a huge nodule on the right side, so I'm guessing that there was more non-nodule tissue hiding behind it. And it was on the left side where the actual malignant tissue was found.

I looked at the results of the scan this afternoon, and it looks like most of the tissue was in that area, so it may well be benign tissue.

I've got a follow-up appointment for next Wednesday, where we'll talk about how to proceed. I'm guessing that the choices will either be to take action to get me ready for the I-131 treatment knowing that there is a fair amount of remaining thyroid; let it be and continue to monitor me regularly to see if there is any signs of further cancer, or to schedule further surgery to remove more of the remaining tissue, then do the I-131 treatment.

I'm kind of hoping that the first option is both available and considered a good idea in general. I worry that without taking some action I'll never be really sure that the cancer is gone. And I'll probably also have to have surgery on a hernia at some point, so I don't know if I really want to go through two more surgeries if I can avoid it.

Well, I'll probably know better on Wednesday, and I have plenty of other stuff to deal with before then (home inspection, ConDor, work, etc.)

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