Thursday, May 29, 2008

Just when you relax

Justin and I let our guard down a bit over the weekend and actually attempted to relax about this cancer thing. Tuesday's doctor appointment with Dr. Fata put us quickly in check! Dr. Fata was very concerned with the lingering cough which had gotten worse over the weekend and sent him immediately to the hospital for a chest x-ray. Luckily within a few hours we knew that everything was okay, but it was quite the scare. It was just a little reminder that his treatment isn't over. I really hope for the day when this is all behind us, but unfortunately we aren't quite there yet. We are, at least, moving in that direction.

Justin has increased his antibiotics for the week for his cough and today it has practically cleared up. The chest x-ray showed that he does not have pnuemonitis...a good thing. His cough might be allergies, which he has always had, or bronchitis. We'll take it! The alternative was a few days in the hospital. Not where Justin wants to be.

Friday Justin went fishing with one of his customers and Bruce tagged along. It was an hour drive, outside of Jackson, and he had a great time! Of course I pestered him about the sun, getting tired, blah, blah, but was so glad he was able to get out of the house and enjoy himself!

Monday we will travel to U of M for an MRI and a check up with Dr. Junck. We are hoping that the MRI shows a continued improvement of inflammation, or just maybe showing that everything is cleared. I will be sure to post on Monday and hopefully it will all be good news!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

No news is good news

Not much new to report. Which to the average person might seem boring. Feeling that nothing is happening may lead some to search for excitement. Not at the Hone household. These days, "boring" is a welcomed event.

Justin continues to feel about the same, very tired. I know it is frustrating for him not to be able to do all the things he wants to do, but he is quick to remind himself that he only has a few treatments left. True to himself, he even finds positives out of going through treatment. And there are only 5 treatments left. 11 weeks. But who is counting anyway?

I guess we are!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

10 Day Vacation

Justin has announced that he is on vacation! Since we went to see Dr. Fata earlier then his usual one week check-up and his blood work was excellent, Justin doesn't have to go to the doctor again until his treatment on the 19th of May. Oh boy! Things he has been doing on his "vacation":

1) Researching bikes. Justin and I are looking into buying new bikes, plus a trailer to pull Jackson in.

2) Catching up on work. He is actually excited to do this!

3) Installing our fire place doors. Jackson finds it a fun place to play! Time to child proof the house!

4) Watching the Tiger's lose.

Friday he will have to go to the hospital for his Pulmonary Function Test. But that test is really quick and easy.

We had a nice time on Mother's Day on Sunday. My Aunt and Uncle were in town from California. We don't get to see them often, so it was nice to spend time with them and with Kitty Grandma. This weekend we will celebrate Niko's 1st birthday. Can't believe it has already been one year!!! Jackson can't wait to give his buddy his birthday presents!

Friday, May 9, 2008

No Uptake, Phew!

After some phone calls, Justin and I got the results of his PET scan this morning. The report says no uptake which means no more cancer! Holy cow does it feel good to say that. Justin and I could not stop smiling, neither could Dr. Fata. We knew the second he walked into the office that he was going to deliver good news. He had a big smile on his face and shook Justin's hand, announcing "congratulations." Of course we pestered him with lots of questions and made him repeat several times that the radiologist report was correct.

Justin still has a slight cough. Dr. Fata explained that a) it is not symptoms of Hodgkin's, b) it could be PCP [pneumonia] since that can be a side effect from tapering off steroids, c) the bleomycin from his chemo cocktail could be causing some unwanted side effects. Justin will have a pulmonary function test later this week. They will compare it to the test he took before his treatment began and if they see any problems, Justin will complete the rest of his treatments minus the bleo. We have been assured that this will not effect the overall outcome of treatment since bleomycin is most effective and potent in the beginning of treatment.

In the end, it is all good news. It was very stressful this week waiting for the results. Justin and I made the mistake of going to the hospital last night and requesting a copy of his PET scan report. All the medical jargon kept me up last night on "Google" trying to figure out what the report said and nearly scaring myself silly, or I should say crazy. Once I saw Dr. Fata's smile this morning, I vowed to have trust in him from now on and to stop looking on the internet. Good advice for me and the others out there who like to self diagnose!

We are celebrating tonight by attending our first Tiger game of the season! I think Justin will be their good luck charm!!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

No Results Yet

When Justin first went to see our PCP [regular doc] to tell him about his symptoms, a frenzy began of tests with immediate results. Now I know looking back maybe they didn't seem immediate but if I count the time now, we had Justin's confirmed diagnosis in less then 14 days. Within that 14 days, Justin had an ultrasound, chest x-ray, CT scan, PET scan, and biopsy which led us to hear that he had Hodgkin's. So you can imagine my surprise when the doctor's office informed me today that the earliest his results for the PET scan would be Tuesday. They promise they will call us if they get the results sooner.

Six days? What normal human being can honestly wait for six days with any ounce of sanity?


Monday, May 5, 2008

Good Old Maize and Blue

I don't think Justin or I ever thought we would be glad to travel to the University of Michigan. It seems a bit ironic, I think, that we are grateful for the maize and blue. I cringe to say that and wonder what all of you sad U of M fans are going to comment...on to the good news anyway!!!

Justin and I met with Dr. Junck at U of M today for a check up and to make sure he was responding well while decreasing his steroids. Going there we knew there wouldn't be any surprises or shocking news. Justin has been feeling increasingly better with each treatment. Dr. Junck and his assistant were very happy to hear that he was not experiencing any headaches and that any symptoms he has been experiencing improve everyday. They are even more convinced now that he has/had vasculitis as a result of his Hodgkin's. I like that they feel confident. And obviously Justin and I can tell that he is feeling better. On June 2nd, Justin will have another MRI to see if the inflammation has improved. We hope it is completely clear:)

May 24th will be Justin's very last day taking his steroids. We have already noticed a decrease in his appetite and the swelling in his face and neck has reduced. We also noticed today at his appointment that he isn't as weak [strength wise] as he has been in the past. The fatigue has seemed to improve a bit since he is able to sleep better at night. His dry cough still seems to be lingering, but Dr. Fata has Justin on antibiotics until the steroids are done. Hopefully this will keep any infections from getting worse.

Tomorrow is treatment day. It marks the halfway point of Justin's treatment, only 3 more cycles or 6 treatments to go. Thank goodness this is going by fast! We wish Justin was feeling better, but are soooo thankful he feels as good as he does. It has been a long road these past few months and we are really beginning to look forward to the end of his treatment.

Wednesday Justin goes in for a PET scan. This is a test that can tell if Justin is cancer free. We are keeping our fingers crossed ever so tightly that that will be the news we hear. He will still have to receive the rest of his treatment, but it would be such a relief to know the cancer is gone. Keep us in your thoughts and prayers. We will update you as soon as we hear the news!!!