Round Two of Chemo - and Update on Truck Repair...we're broke again!
The following is directly from the Radiology report on the first MRI - I realize not everyone will understand the terminology, heck; I don't either but I do Google A LOT of the unknown words and phrases...
The largest lumbar lesion is again seen at the L2 level with smaller
lesions noted in L1, L3, L4, L5, in the bilateral sacral ala, and
bilateral iliac bones adjacent to the sacroiliac joints. One of the
metastatic lesions surrounded the left first neural foramen with
disruption of the cortex along the lateral aspect of the foramen and
demonstrates a small amount of enhancing soft tissue extending into the
left neural foramen and abutting the exiting nerve root. There is no
evidence of nerve root impingement or enhancement of the nerve root at
There is mild multilevel degenerative changes throughout the spine with
disc osteophyte complexes at multiple cervical spinal levels without
significant neural foraminal or central canal stenosis. There is a
stable small right paracentral disc herniation at T2-T3 which causes
mild effacement of the ventral thecal sac and mild neural foraminal
narrowing. At the T7-T8 level there is a stable broad-based disc
protrusion with obliteration of the left lateral recess and abutment of
the exiting T8 nerve root which is noted significantly changed from
prior examination. At the L1-L2 level there is stable large central
disc extrusion with moderate central spinal canal stenosis. There is a
stable broad-based right lateral disc protrusion at L3-L4 with mild;
right neural foraminal narrowing.
There is increase in size in a left paracentral disc extrusion which is
inferiorly migrates, obliterating the left lateral recess and causing
mass effect on the exiting L5 nerve root.
With all of this, and physical exam by my spine specialist, it has been determined that the L-5 nerve is being pinched off by the disc being off it's "cushion" there, and I will have an Epidural Injection tomorrow in hopes to relieve the pressure so that we can try to work on getting my back to be back to normal somehow. I will have a followup with my pain and spine doctor one week following this injection. I have spent the majority of this year, laid up in bed with the excruciating pain from this nerve impingement, or at least sitting on a heating pad to keep the nerve and tissue relaxed. It has kept me from going to Church, but I have continued to Worship and Pray as well as plan fundraising project for the Church from home, when I've been able to sit and work on the laptop that is.. I am Thankful, that I was able to attend the wedding of two very special people in our lives, that it was a casual ceremony held in the home of the bride's son, so I was able to sit on the sofa and recline as I needed to, being able to avoid pinching the nerve off, and wore my "germ preventing" hospital mask as well. I plan to make some myself that do not suffocate me and look so ugly... the ones the hospital provides are not the most comfortable or attractive...
SOOOOOO.... the TITLE of this post; refers to Side Effects from Side Effects... Not all SIDE EFFECTS are physical, or a direct result of the Cancer or Treatment itself. The BACK PAIN problems mentioned above, are most likely a result of having had the Rod insertion in the RIGHT Femur, which was due to a fracture and weakness from the Zometa treatment and respective tumors in the bone. By avoiding the weight placement on the RIGHT leg, by using the LEFT leg as my weight bearing leg, hence putting added pressure on the vertebrae of the lower spine, leaving me where we are today...having to get this injection to hopefully find some relief.
THANKFULLY, as far as side effects from my actual Chemo go, I am happy to report that 5 days into round TWO and I have yet to experience any nasty such side effects. I have had a tender spot on the roof of my mouth, and find I cannot eat hard or crusty foods like toast or potato chips; not a problem. I had Dry Itchy Eyes on Sunday, and with the help of lubricating drops and adding more water to my diet the following day, by Tuesday they do not itch any longer. :)
Side Effects in my opinion also come in the form of what we call "Murphy's Law"... in our case, our truck problems and lack of income to address the expense of repairing it, or covering any other such necessities in life.
All of these visits require us to have a secure and safe running vehicle. We have received enough in donations to get some of the work done on our truck, for which we are very thankful We also managed to purchase a soft padded toilet seat, which has been very helpful with the mets being on my Sacrum bones (those pointy sharp butt bones that rest on the seat of the commode), it is a huge difference now that I can actually SIT on the toilet without creating pain in my leg, and up my back as well from putting pressure on the nerves that run through that area upon sitting. Some times, I wish I were born a man, I would not have to worry about that with every visit to the restroom... ANYWAY... back to the truck.
Thus far; we were GIVEN 2 Tires, but had to get rims to fit our truck. Thank you to my Nephew Don for that contribution. The following is what had to be replaced thus far, and we were able to do so with your contributions:
Front End: Upper & lower Ball Joint - Passenger Side
Tie Rod Ends : inner and outer - both sides.
Pitman Arm and Idler Arm
Purchased 2 new tires, and 4 rims and had installed
We also were able to pay our DTE Bill, both cell phones for two months, Cable & Phone/Internet for this month and paid off the credit card that we had been using for gas in the previous months. THANK YOU to all that had contributed to our PAYPALME account to help make that possible!
Still need to have done:
Upper & lower Ball Joint - Driver Side
Repair: Radiator Core Support (holds the radiator and other components in place)
Repair: Switch to heating system...fan only works on high, when it decides to work.
Repair: Weld back of bed frame so tailgate will stay in place w/out using a ratchet strap as we do now.
Front End Alignment - which cannot be done until all the front end work is completed.
Spare tire and rim- need to replace as ours is dryrotted and the rim is horribly corroded.
Constantly fill the fuel tank to be able to get to and from my appointments or shopping.
In addition to the vehicle issues, Teri and Mike both need to get new eyeglasses, and we just discovered that Mike no longer has vision coverage of any kind with the 2016 coverage. As for Teri, I have my RX, and my insurance will cover up to $125 for glasses, I require a progressive bifocal to have the most benefit from my glasses which generally cost more than that.
We wanted to provide an update for all that have donated to see how they have helped, and hopefully, to help to see that we still have a long way to go to be "on top of things". We are still in our little mobile home. And cannot begin to think about moving elsewhere until we have the truck repaired (or replaced with something more handicap accessible and secure) and have the funds available for a down payment or deposit. Your sharing our post and / or contributing to our fund would be a great help. No donation is too small, we appreciate any bit of help we can get at this time. https://www.paypal.me/TLCwageWARonMBC
With many blessings, and our appreciation for your support,
Mike & Teri.