After feeling pretty smug about the fact that Mini-Me had not traveled down me spine, the medical world managed to slam me back to the Land of Devastation and Despair.
We met with UW’s tumor team. Dr. Rostomily, a big teddy bear of a neurosurgeon, who told us what we already knew: I have an inoperable Grade 4 (fast-growing) brain tumor. Then Dr. Chamberlain, a brain tumor oncologist met with us and said we’d be looking at aggressive chemo coupled with more aggressive radiation. And thenthe radiation oncologist entered and very calmly told me that post-radiation my hair would never grow back, I would have short-term memory loss, I would get hypothyroidism, my throat might never function properly again, I would be at risk of potential heart problems … the list just went on and on … and that’s if, she noted, I survived. Basically, she was going to nuke me from stem to stern and see what kind of broken bird we all ended up with.
Her news turned my neck to wood and brought on the most nauseating headache I’ve ever had.
We then met with another radiation oncologist. He shared much of the same information, and even some grimmer stuff, but the second time around it was easier to take. He’s radiated three medulloblastomas in the past few years (you know it’s rare, right?) and two of the three are still cancer free (he just finished the third one last week).
So he has a hundred percent success rate so far.
That’s the kind of news we can use!