Disclaimer: This is not an April fool’s joke although that would have been nice.
Betty is on steroids. I’m healing. We’re going nuclear.
I had seven fucking centimeters of tumor removed from my ear. I’m still not over this, but damn, no wonder I was in so much pain. Obviously, the fact that Betty is getting fat and happy changes things. My oncologist is breaking out the nuclear option, and I don’t just mean radiation. Chant with me: kill kill kill!
First, some more surgery stuff. The surgeons got
seven centimeters everything they intended to get. Unfortunately, they couldn’t get nice, wide margins because Betty had grown down to my bone. Apparently, my bone looked healthy (and this time the surgeons had no issues identifying what was cancer, versus last May when they had to guess), but we all know Betty is a bitch and has likely sent out cells that are as yet undetectable.
Based on that, I’m most likely looking at a three step plan.
Step 1: We need to make sure Betty is still acting weirdly. That is, make sure she hasn’t taken up residence elsewhere in my body. I need another CT/PET scan. This is happening on 4/6.
Step 2: Assuming Betty is still just hanging out in my ear, I’m going to start radiation after my ear heals. I won’t have more information on this until I can meet with the radiation oncologist (this is happening on 4/3), but it will likely involve 5 days a week for up to 6 weeks of treatment. I’m told it would be very localized and shouldn’t be too bad.
Step 3: After radiation, I’ll probably be starting new medications. These are the drugs that target melanomas with the BRAF mutation that I mentioned before, and they are generally very effective for a brief time. They aren’t usually given to people in my situation (usually they’re given for larger, more widespread tumors), but my oncologist’s hope is that if I start them when there is very little of Betty left, they might be able to wipe out the rest of her.
The good news is that I continue to heal well from surgery. In fact, if necessary, there’s still more of my ear left that could be removed. Yay?