When patients are treated for cancer, there are different steps of treatment followed by a waiting period for the body to recover. David is in his “waiting period” following his radiation treatment. We had been using this time to make a decision about David’s continuing care.
This past week, we (Mark, Richard, Susan, & I) talked to the doctor in charge of the clinical trial in Pittsburgh and we decided that David will take part in that study. We told David about it, and he is excited. He said the science behind it makes sense to him. :o) He’s talked to his Chemistry teacher and last year’s biology teacher about it, and they both helped him reason through it. Being David, he is also excited about the possibility that this could open up new treatment for other people so they won’t have to go through chemo.
David will start the clinical trial in January. This is instead of the normal chemotherapy that is given to most patients. The trial is for a vaccine that will attack the cancer cells in David’s body while leaving the healthy cells alone. It is the most promising thing we’ve seen, but even at that, the doctors are careful not to make any promises. They aren’t calling this a cure, but they do think they can give us the same results as the chemotherapy, but without the typical side effects of chemo.
They will also do an MRI at that time to see what was left behind after the surgery. Even after all this time, it still might not be a clear picture because of the swelling from radiation.
David is doing really great right now. He has shaved his hair for what we hope will be the last time because it should start growing back since the radiation is over. He is in Key Largo this week with Mark, Susan, Austin, Katie & Kelly. They are enjoying a lot of activities and of course, just being at the warm beach. Since we couldn’t be with the kids, Richard and I also decided to take a mini vacation. We had thought to head home, but decided that we probably needed the time to regroup as a couple.
It’s been a good few days. I confessed at dinner that I’m having trouble coming up with topics that aren’t related to the kids, work, or cancer, but it is a low-pressure environment. Richard and I have enjoyed some quality time, in spite of the pressures that are bearing down.
I also got a lovely message from a church in Alabama that is praying for David. We get so much encouragement from those messages. Thanks to all of you for keeping David in your prayers.