Well, we’re waiting for a sign from St Jude’s really. What is Jude the saint of, by the way? Hopefully it’s not something awful like “lost causes.” That wouldn’t really be appropriate, would it? Anyway, the doctors at St Jude’s are reviewing Austin’s case today and will let Dr. Auletta know by the end of the day what their recommendations are or if they have ever seen this happen before. (Being “one of a kind” certainly has its down side!)
You may remember that St. Jude’s reviewed Austin’s case back in March and April and their recommendation (that Austin receive flank side radiation) differed from that of both Dr. Auletta and the radiation oncologist here at UH. It also differed from the non-medical opinion of both me and Mark, and it was one we did not follow. Now, I certainly respect and admire all the incredible work that St. Jude’s does for kids with cancer; they are undoubtedly the best around. But I really felt like they just weren’t paying attention to the nuances of Austin’s cancer when they made that particular recommendation; it had so few advantages and so many (and such big) disadvantages. I also wonder if this is yet another case of over-aggressive treatment of cancer in children. Maybe one of the reasons they have such impressive success rates regarding cancer is because those patients end up with other horrible and often life-threatening conditions. It doesn’t do much good to have a child who is “disease-free” (as in no evidence of cancer) then die of, say, transplant complications.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. We are waiting to see what they say today and how this impacts our plan moving forward. Not quite sure what to hope for, but hoping for the best!