This blog update will cover two important things: updates on Nick, and guidelines on visitation.
After consultation with the radiational oncologists, Dr. Ko and Dr. Lee, the tumor in the neck/shoulder (C7) is the tumor causing the most pain. Unforunately the tumor is in the area that has received the lifetime maximum amount of radiation, so there is no treatment available for that tumor. I feel like its best at this point to be as forward and up front about this situation as possible: this is an aggressive cancer, and without treatment, Nick's time will be shorter than we had anticipated. If this tumor takes the course that the doctors believe it will, severe paralysis (neck and below) could be a factor, and this could be a painful couple of months. Disbelief and sadness is the atmosphere right now.
Nick will start radiation tomorrow morning on the tumors in the lower spine (T12, L2, L3). Instead of the normal 10 treatments, they're going to pack it into 5 to try and get the areas radiated as fast as possible.
The brain scan was clear, so there is a huge blessing there. The pain management team worked tirelessly throughout the day to try and get Nick on a pain medicine regiment that will keep him as comfortable as possible. It seems to be helping, but please keep that in prayer.
Now for vistitation...After consulting with palliative care, and asking Nick what would work best for him, this is our plan for visitation. We ask that all visitation please begin AFTER 2 PM tomorrow, as Nick has radiation and another MRI in the morning.
For Nick's best interest, we just kind of wanted to set a few guidelines so everyone can have the best time possible together:
-Please limit visits to 20 minutes (Nick'll be catching some zzz's by then anyway...)
-If you've had a cold in the past 48-72 hours, or feel cold-like symptoms, please refrain from visiting.
A good reccomendation from Dr. Shannon, the palliative care doctor, for visitors was to avoid asking Nick a lot of questions about his illness or treatment, unless Nick brings it up. We want lots of prayer, laughter, and comraderie!
Thank you for your understanding in this...I know we all just want what's going to be best for Nick at this time.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
1 Peter 1:3-9
How Great Thou Art,