Monday, October 27, 2008


Written by Jodee McCabe    
Monday, 27 October 2008  8:30 PM

An update that isn't an update?  Well, it is sort of like a doctors' appt. that isn't a doctor's appt.   Yesterday we showed up at the oncologist's office.  After waiting for 45 minutes past our appt., we were ushered into the room to be told that there had been miscommunication with the radiologist's office and they needed the written report for the previous scan before they could complete their report.  What was missing was his/her comments on the liver, which, apparently, is more important than other organs in the oncologist's evaluation of the progression or non-progression of the cancer.  Apparently, what the nurse had received and passed on to us last Thurs. was an unofficial summary, not the OFFICIAL report and the radiologist did not want to offer that until he/she compared it to the first report.

There was a date on the bottom of the CD of the original CT Scan which denoted when the CD was copied and given to us.  HOWEVER, the date of the actual test was in the CT Study info on the TOP of the CD.  Unfortunately, the date at the bottom was bold in print and that is all the person who was requesting the written report looked at.  The oncology office had no "June 19" CT report so they were at a standstill.  We left the doctor's office needing to DRIVE to the other office, give them our copy of the RIGHT report (we still had not figured out the whole problem yet),  WAIT for them to complete the report and then hand carry it back to the oncologist's office.  They made an appt. for Friday to replace yesterday's appt.  
While we were sitting for 2 hours at the radiologist's (we were led to believe that the time would be much shorter or else I would have driven the 12 miles again later) I was thinking we should push to be worked in to the oncologist's office earlier...either later yesterday or maybe today.  When we returned with the full report, the nurse said there was no way for yesterday (he was already way behind, as we had witnessed by our 45 min. late appt. earlier).  But she would see about an appt. earlier than Friday and call us.

After 5 hours, minus 45 min. for lunch, in doctors' offices, we were pretty tired when we got home.  Not much got accomplished yesterday.  We left for dinner with friends at about 6 p.m. not having heard from the oncology nurse.   When we returned a couple of hours later, we had a message from both the nurse and the oncologist on the phone machine:

The liver results were similar to other areas:  some lesions were gone, others were new.  There was some mention of adding a new drug to the mix (new to Renal Cell cancer, but has been used for quite awhile for colo-rectal, breast and lung cancers) which would need to be IV injected every other week.  Our oncologist wanted to consult with Dr. Logan at IU Medical and so he wanted us to wait till Friday so Dr. Logan would have a chance to get back to him.
SO....we continue to wait.  The behavior of the cancer makes no sense to us but I'm sure that is part of why the researchers are having so much difficulty in figuring out how to treat it effectively.  It is sort of like shooting at a moving target.

This change of plans and the possibility of needing to be here for IV infusions has put our plans to visit my mom, in Florida, on hold for the moment.

The waiting is hard.  Please pray for our minds and hearts to be focused on God and HIS plan for us, over and above all the medical issues and decisions (It may be time for us to re-read, "Don't Waste Your Cancer" again) while still thoughtfully and prayerfully giving wise thought to our next steps.

Thanks for waiting and praying with us,

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Written by Jodee McCabe    
Wednesday, 22 October 2008 4:35 PM

While I was out with a friend this afternoon, the oncology nurse called to give Dan the results of his CT scan from Tues.  The news was not good.  While some spots on the original CT scan seem to have disappeared, there are several new "spots".    We don't fully understand what it means but the bottom line is that the disease is progressing.  I don't want to guess at the ramifications of this (well, we both have, but we will try to not dwell on our imaginings) until we speak with the doctor.  He would have called today but is on vacation this week.  We have an appt. to see him early Monday morning.

With Dan feeling as well as he has, we have been fairly hopeful and this news has been a rough bump in the road.  Please keep praying for extra measures of faith, comfort, strength and peace as we look to Abba Father for sustaining grace.

Monday, October 20, 2008


Written by Jodee McCabe    
Monday, 20 October 2008 19:00

We are now back home in Wyoming (our suburb of Cincinnati).  We got our first "grandchildren fix" on Thurs. and early Friday morning headed to the oncologist's office for Dan's blood test.  While we were in the office we met with the oncology nurse to discuss the most recent pain development;  a pain in Dan's R flank where the diseased kidney used to be.  Dan was worried it might be pain from the liver but the nurse thought it was muscular b/c of the way it responded to touch.  They will have a little better idea when they get the CT results.  I'm glad to report that in just the last two days, that pain has diminished some.

The purpose of that blood test was to check on Dan's kidney function before giving him contrast material for the CT.  Unfortunately, his kidney function, which was borderline on our last trip home, shows the kidney is not functioning as well now. They will NOT be giving him the contrast for his CT today b/c it puts stress on the kidney.  This means that the CT scan will not be as sharp but we are hoping they will be able to see what they need to see.  I (Jodee) have pretty much decided that from now on, regardless of the kidney function level, we will forego the contrast.  This thinking will need to be discussed with the oncologist on Monday.  The way I'm thinking, there is NO point in stressing the kidney, even if the numbers were in the OK range.  They are not going to do surgery from these results;  they just give us an idea of what is happening with the chemo.  

So this morning we are off to the radiologist's for Dan's CT scan.  It will be a few days until we have any feedback on the CT scan.  It might be Friday or it might be as long as Monday.  

Over the last half of the summer and into fall, we have received so many notices of serious illnesses; from newborns to toddlers to adults to seniors.  We have been inundated with horrible news about the state of our country politically, financially and culturally.  It is overwhelming at times.  I know you all have received many of those requests and share our grave concerns about our country as well and it makes us even more mindful of the commitment you all are making as prayer warriors.  We are joining with you for all of these prayer requests and are so grateful for being added to this long list.

I'll send another update as soon as we hear anything.  Thank you so much (again and again) for the notes, emails, phone calls and especially for the continuing prayer on our behalf. We are so very, very grateful.