Still fighting and kicking butt. More scans to come. Stuck in a holding pattern.
To quote my oncologist, my “scans show no signs of anything that looks like melanoma.” Break out the party hats!
No wait, don’t. Not only is that begging for trouble, it might be premature. While that is the strongest positive language my doc has used to describe the results yet (if you’ll recall, previously he’s always talked about remaining specks), I’m still dealing with ear and head pain. So, next week, I’m scheduled to get a brain MRI, assuming insurance approves it that quickly. If not, we’ll push it back.
Doc doesn’t think it’s likely something will show up on the MRI that the CT failed to uncover, but as usual, we want to be cautious. Just as my surgeon has theories about what non-cancerous issues could be causing the pain, so does he. In this case, he thinks it could be possibly be the nivo making my skin sensitive/allergic to my glasses. Strange new allergies are not an uncommon reaction to these immunotherapy drugs.
Assuming the MRI doesn’t show anything concerning or surprising, I’m moving into a holding pattern. Since I’m off the treatment, all they’re going to do is monitor me. Doc reiterates that the people who have the worst side effects and fastest responses, like I did, tend to show the best long term results. But ultimately, they can’t say for sure which drug it is (or whether it was the combo) that seems to be working. And if it’s the nivo especially, they can’t say how long the effects will last because the drug is too new.
In sum, let’s hope this blog becomes a lot more boring in the future.