If, by any chance, you’ve been waiting around for some news from today’s scans, well . . . imagine how we feel.
But we do finally have news and it’s mostly good. The “good” part is that it has not spread; there is no cancer in Austin’s lungs or liver. The “mostly” part is that the mass seems to have grown yet again (from two centimeters in diameter to almost three), although it’s unclear whether the size has actually changed or whether the view on a 3-dimensional CT scan is just different enough from a 2-dimensional ultrasound that it looks bigger. Ultimately (as I have been heartily assured by our docs) this doesn’t change our approach on Monday, and in fact it lets us know (yet again) that we are doing the right thing by moving ahead with this as quickly as we are.
Here’s the interesting thing though. The cystic lesion (the very thing we were watching via ultrasound when we found the current new solid lesion) seems to have been pushed out of place by the new lesion. They look like they’ve merged into one which might be why it’s now bigger. The doctors won’t be able to tell for sure until they actually open him up and are looking at these tumors head-on but it’s possible the solid one either grew inside the fluid one and burst out of it or maybe they’ve just been smooshed together.
All of this made me very nervous when I heard it (Wait, it’s moved, why would it do such a thing? Oh no, now it’s bigger — can we still spare the kidney? etc etc) but according to the surgeon, the plan remains. He even said that being slightly bigger is actually better because he’ll be better able to see it and manipulate it with his hands. Its increased size doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll have to remove any more of the kidney. Imagine that you made a pile of sand (the kidney tissue) and then stuck a small fist (tumor) in it, displacing the sand. If you stuck a larger fist (larger tumor) in it, and then eventually pulled it out, the sand that remained would be the same. That’s the hope with the kidney. They’ll be removing something that isn’t actually part of the kidney, hopefully leaving just as much kidney behind as they would have two weeks ago.
Anyway, I know that’s all a bunch of medical mumbo jumbo. Just know that my little man did a spectacular job in the hospital last night (without letting out even a peep when his IV was inserted) and all day today. He and Mark are still there, with hydration is set to be done by 9pm and then he’ll be home to sleep in his own bed.
Oh, but first (because the day hasn’t been long enough), I have to bundle Braedan up in his warmest pajamas and drag him out in 18-degree weather well past his bedtime on a school night to drive back down to the hospital and hand deliver Mark’s car keys, which, as we switched back and forth between each other’s cars during our multiple shifts on and off today, somehow ended up here at home while his car is there in the parking garage. Nice.