Exhale! Thank you Lord!
However, we did have a little hesitation in sharing this before we understood exactly what the report said.
I left a message for the nurse to call with the results as soon as they were available. When I got the call this afternoon, she said that the results were in and it looked "fine".
I thought that was an interesting choice of wording considering the gravity of the situation so I clarified by asking, "The scans were clear?"
She responded that the doctor said the results "were fine".
You know how sometimes you ask someone how they are and they say they are "fine" and based on the way it is said you are left trying to interpret what kind of "fine" they are. Well, that is how I felt. Fine just did not seem........ fine. I hesitated to celebrate.
I repeated this conversation to Chris and he felt uneasy with the wording as well. We wanted to see the report or talk to the doctor but we would have to wait a few days for the results to be mailed to us. So Chris did what any anxious parent would do.....he drove to the office for the results.
Once he had the scan report in hand he was even more confused and worried so he asked to speak with the doctor.
Read it for yourself and you can see the dilemma....
"Findings: There is no new focal dominant area of intense increased uptake to suggest recurrent or residual hypermetabolic tumor at this time." if it ended here it would be great...but it went on to say... "There is new triangular elevated activity in the anterior mediastinum in a pattern suggestive of thymic rebound hyperlasia." this was the line that confused us a bit
Basically, the words "new elevated activity" were a little worrisome at first. Those are not the kind of words you ever want to see on scan reports. When Chris spoke with CJ's doctor, he clarified for us that this is common after CJ's type of cancer and chemotherapy treatments. The Thymis, an organ of the Lymphastic system, becomes enlarged as it rebounds from chemotherapy. The good news is that it is highly common post treatment and very unlikely to be cancer.
I found this on a website today...
The term hyperplasia means an increase in the number of cells within an organ, which results in a larger organ. In thymic hyperplasia, the thymus gland is larger than normal. Sometimes, physicians use the term "rebound thymic hyperplasia." This describes the thymus gland of patients who have had chemotherapy for lymphoma, or a tumor of the lymphoid tissue. After chemotherapy, the thymus gland is small, because the medication makes the gland shrink in size. After a period of time, however, the gland grows. Dr. Nason writes that it usually becomes large approximately nine months after people have stopped taking chemotherapy, but the gland can grow large in just two weeks or any time from two weeks up to a year. www.livestrong.com
After talking with CJ's doctor, we felt reassured and celebrated the fact that the most important line of the clinical report stated:
In English that means.....NO EVIDENCE OF DISEASE! NED!!! NED!!! NED!!!
Praise God! We are celebrating CJ's continued recovery and remission from cancer. We are moving forward with Port Removal and will let everyone know when we have a date.
There are no words to thank you all for your prayers and support these past couple days. Your messages were very encouraging and provided a much needed boost in our spirits. We are so grateful!
I want to share with you that while we were at the hospital for the PET Scan on Tuesday we went to visit a cancer child that was in the hospital for chemo. On the way over, we ran into one of CJ's doctors. She was on her way to meet with the "several new diagnosis" that had come in over the weekend. She remarked about the ones that were diagnosed on Sunday, "Can you imagine? Happy Mother's Day...your kid has cancer."
It really hit me again that even as we get further away from this walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we cannot forget those we leave behind or those just entering it. We have to turn around, look back and shine the light of Christ back in at them so they know which direction to head.
"For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ." (2 Corinthians 4:6)