Medical Stuff

It’s been a while since I’ve posted here – a whole month in fact. This has been due to a medical situation that has been stressful and time consuming.Briefly the details are like this.

Last summer I noticed a lump on my face, just in front of my right ear. I wasn’t sure what it was and since there was no pain associated with it I didn’t follow up on it immediately. Finally in early fall I mentioned it to my doctor and he referred me to an ENT surgeon with the intention of having it removed and analyzed.

First I had a MRI of the region and it was called a probable lymphoma which was involved with other lymph glands. In early December I had surgery on my right parotid gland to remove the lump and get samples for analysis. Tests confirmed it as non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at stage III and I was referred to a oncologist.

After more tests and exams I started chemotherapy on Dec. 18. My treatments will repeat every two weeks for six cycles total. With luck that will be the end of it. I just had my second session on January 5th and all went smoothly.

So far the side effects have been minimal. The most apparent one being the loss of my hair but I’m also more tired than usual and, curiously, also having problems sleeping. Before my second chemo session my white cell count went very low so I needed injections to get it up to a safe range. Things seem to be back on track now.

If untreated, this disease would be life threatening but with treatment my odds are very good for complete remission. Even without complete remission it can be reduced to a less dangerous form which can be controlled. I am very confident that I’ll be back to my old self within a few months.

For the curious, here are before and after pictures of me.

mebefore meafter

I’ll post more info in the future and I’ll try to get back to more regular blog posting.

5 comments on “Medical Stuff

  1. Dear Tom,

    I wish you the very best with your chemo and all your treatment. You are a strong man and I know your good attitude will serve you well.

    Best wishes,

    Paul Genesse