RonO (rono_60103) wrote,

Health Update (et. al.)

A week ago, I fully expected to be recovering from radiation therapy today. But there has been a setback that has delayed my treatment.

On Tuesday, I got a call from the primary doctor involved in this treatment informing me that the second blood test I'd taken the previous Friday showed a lower TSH level -- which implies more thyroid hormone in my system. At that point we were left with two possible reasons for this: either I have more remaining thyroid tissue, or I the lab messed up the results. On Tuesday, I had a third blood test done at a different lab (part of a national chain that neither robot_grrl nor her mother consider all that reliable) to see if it was a lab mistake.

On Friday, I talked to the medical assistant at the doctor's office. While I didn't get (nor press for) the actual results, she said that they are trying to schedule me for further imaging. On Tuesday when I was talking to the doctor, he mentioned that if the new blood test didn't show a higher TSH level, he'd recommend both a thyroid scan using a different isotope of radioactive iodine (they use I131 for the treatment, I'm not sure what they use for the scans) and an MRI of my neck region.

The fear is that the additional tissue instead of being a small part of the thyroid left in place to avoid damaging the parathyroid glands - glands that when damage can prevent the absorption of calcium possibly requiring weekly injection which can be painful - the tissue is actually metastatic cancer elsewhere in the neck (papillary carcinoma is slow spreading and given the size is unlikely to have spread far -- Tara thinks it is unlikely to have spread at all).

But I think that the doctors also need to know how much tissue is there to adjust the dosage of the I131 for the treatment.

On the other hand, not being radioactive let me accompany Tara to Yuma and back - and actually do a lot of the driving. We did get a bit of an earlier start so we got to Yuma about an hour earlier, and were able to get back to San Diego with enough time to stop by Mysterious Galaxy on the way home (OK, its not quite on the way home, but Claremont Mesa Blvd is close enough to CA-52 to not really be a detour). Also, today Tara and I are going to do our first bit of house hunting. (I joked that I'm really being romantic for Valentines day by taking my wife out shopping for the most expensive thing I can buy her)

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