Switch of medications today was quite interesting as taking off from minipress and seroquel combo with ambien to a half of zoloft. The cocktail mixture did increase his appetite and make him fall to sleep right away but he only slept for a few hours.
Zoloft has kept the appetite which is great and he has gone to bed two hours later. Time will tell how long he sleeps. Hopefully all night with no problems or nightmares. March 4th can’t get here soon enough for the consultation so we know what we are facing and can prepare an accurate plan of attack.
Must ask about H-86 as an alternative instead of chemo if it comes to that. Although it is experimental could it possibly be less expensive than chemo? I guess if they will only pay 80% of a mask that he has to have for his CPAP machine and the Machine then goodness knows they would not pay the full shot for anything to do with this either.
During a visit to the Surgeon it was recommended that he be tested for Prostate Cancer with a blood test called PSA. It tests the area between the two testies since the physical tests that doctors do to the patient can not determine the findings in this area. We are still waiting to hear the results on the findings. It has been almost a week.
I have been praying that it will just be a simple procedure of laser and then a plastic surgeon to do corrective surgery following.
God please hear my prayer that the other tests come back good if it be your will.
Saturday Log – He was up early as usual. Woke me looking for his aspirin and was a tad grouchy but then became very happy after the aspirin kicked in. Has been in a good mood since.
Sunday Feb- 23 He has a vision (half dreaming) that there are clouds around him with children smiling and his father smiling and looking at him. He asks me to take his temperature and it shows as a low grade temp. I wait for an hour and take again. The thermometer suddenly reads the minimum reading. No matter what I do to it, I can’t get it to read.
He does not tell me about his dream. I ask him two different times, trying to stay calm to let me take him to the emergency room and both times he said that he needs a nap. He suddenly appears in my office with his coat on and states he is ready to go.
We spend from noon till 7PM with a heart monitor and two IV’s later, I get to bring him home. When we had arrived, his blood pressure was 145/84. That is really high for him. His temp was low grade but not as low as my thermometer. 96.7 at the er. We came home and I prepared Chicken with garlic, stewed tomatoes, spinach and bowtie macaroni so that I could pack a few more vitamins in him. He did eat.
Monday- Getting him to eat Special K breakfast bars has been wonderful. (Great invention) He had the chicken dish for lunch. Much better mood although he is still tired. I am exhausted so I am sure he is.
Tuesday- We have a few errands to run, he is craving Chinese food. http://www1.beyondmenu.com/20518/clarksville/chopsticks-restaurant–first-order-15–off–clarksville-37042.aspx?r=20518
He does manage to eat a big plate of what I prepare for him and a bowl of wonton soup. Around midnight he got up and had another plate of food.
Wednesday- He has managed to sleep a little longer than he usually does so this is good. Quiet day today. Lots of energy today and has a good appetite. Spirits are up and down throught the day. Not sleeping well at night. He managed to polish off most of the left over Chinese food from Chopsticks.
Thursday – We are up super early to fit our showers in before we head to see the Lung Specialist. Hubby seems to like this doctor a lot. He has a very heavy European accent and yet his bed side manner is such that you feel right at home and comfortable with him right away. It helps that he can tell hubby that he also sleeps with a C-Pac machine and the setting is almost the same as his.
Interesting discussion while in the office today. Melanoma is the only cancer that can not be traced back to tobacco or it’s use.
We grabbed an open hot roast beef sandwich with veggie at https://www.facebook.com/mosssoutherncooking. Have never had anything but that sandwich there. Why change a great thing…
Tonight I made him Shrimp Scampi since that is what he began to think about on the way home from the doctor. All I could think about was how full I was from lunch.
Tomorrow he was supposed to travel to Nashville for the VA for an appointment but today has really tired him and we will reschedule that appointment since it was not related to the illness to a later date when we are finished with all of the doctor appointments.
We only know it is sun exposure or radiation exposure. We only know that it is stage III but not which stage III.
According to http://www.cancer.org/cancer/skincancer-melanoma/detailedguide/melanoma-skin-cancer-staging here is a brief breakdown on the findings:
T1a to T4a, N1a or N2a, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness, but it is not ulcerated. It has spread to 1 to 3 lymph nodes near the affected skin area, but the nodes are not enlarged and the melanoma is found only when they are viewed under the microscope. There is no distant spread.
One of the following applies:
T1b to T4b, N1a or N2a, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness and is ulcerated. It has spread to 1 to 3 lymph nodes near the affected skin area, but the nodes are not enlarged and the melanoma is found only when they are viewed under the microscope. There is no distant spread.
T1a to T4a, N1b or N2b, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness, but it is not ulcerated. It has spread to 1 to 3 lymph nodes near the affected skin area. The nodes are enlarged because of the melanoma. There is no distant spread.
T1a to T4a, N2c, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness, but it is not ulcerated. It has spread to small areas of nearby skin or lymphatic channels around the original tumor, but the nodes do not contain melanoma. There is no distant spread.
One of the following applies:
T1b to T4b, N1b or N2b, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness and is ulcerated. It has spread to 1 to 3 lymph nodes near the affected skin area. The nodes are enlarged because of the melanoma. There is no distant spread.
T1b to T4b, N2c, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness and is ulcerated. It has spread to small areas of nearby skin or lymphatic channels around the original tumor, but the nodes do not contain melanoma. There is no distant spread.
Any T, N3, M0: The melanoma can be of any thickness and may or may not be ulcerated. It has spread to 4 or more nearby lymph nodes, OR to nearby lymph nodes that are clumped together, OR it has spread to nearby skin or lymphatic channels around the original tumor and to nearby lymph nodes. The nodes are enlarged because of the melanoma. There is no distant spread.
Our next step is to find out which category that he fits into:
- T stands for tumor (how far it has grown within the skin and other factors). The T category is assigned a number (from 0 to 4) based on the tumor’s thickness (how far down it has grown). It may also be assigned a small letter a or b based on ulceration and mitotic rate, which are explained below.
- N stands for spread to nearby lymph nodes (bean-sized collections of immune system cells, to which cancers often spread first). The N category is assigned a number (from 0 to 3) based on whether the melanoma cells have spread to lymph nodes or are found in the lymphatic channels connecting the lymph nodes. It may also be assigned a small letter a, b, or c, as described below.
- The M category is based on whether the melanoma has metastasized (spread) to distant organs, which organs it has reached, and on blood levels of a substance called LDH.
There are 2 types of staging for melanoma:
- Clinical staging is based on what is found on physical exam, biopsy/removal of the main melanoma, and any imaging tests that are done.
- Pathologic staging uses all of this information, plus what is found during biopsies of lymph nodes or other organs if they are done.
The pathologic stage (determined after the lymph node biopsy) may actually be higher than the clinical stage (determined before the lymph node biopsy) if the biopsy finds cancer in new areas. Doctors use the pathologic stage if it is available, as it gives a more accurate picture of the extent of the cancer, but in many cases lymph node biopsies are not needed.
They have come a long way with modern medicine and laser sugeries have made a huge difference in the various techniques that are used today.
This we will find out after the March 4th Visit.
Next week I will start Part II of the findings.
Till then eat healthy, be loving and be kind to those around you.