Sunday, November 07, 2004

Stay Alert. Make Good Choices.

If you've read Ed's comment on my last post, then you may already know that scant moments after I finished my last post, Dr. Evers called the house with an exciting plot twist.

It appeared that one of my affected lymphnodes had tripled in size between the PET SCAN on Monday and the CT scan on Thursday. This dramatic development, along with my persistent high fever (since Sunday night) and a new pain in my chest, led to my being admitted into St. Mary's Hospital Thursday evening.

I saw Dr's Evers, Kumar, Bowles, Cohn and a few more. I had a series of chest x-rays while I swallowed barium and other nasty fluids.

The worst fear was an absessed lymphnode that would require immediate thoracic surgery. In the actual event, it looks like a hematoma ("bruise"), likely an infected one. This, it turns out, was among the better possible scenarios. Treatment plan is hospitalization with powerful IV anti-biotics and morphine for pain. Treatment duration is uncertain, but the fever was a lot less bad (i.e. somewhat better) last night.

While it now seems likely that we'll resume the initial chemo/radiation/surgery plan, it seems unlikely that it will begin tomorrow, or indeed until the infection is resolved.

For now, I'm hoping I might get to go home tomorrow (remember, my fortieth birthday?), but Dr. Evers isn't back until Tuesday. We'll see.


Blogger Jenn said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8:35 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...


Excellent to hear you coming through in another post. Infections like that can be scary, but a lot of times, esp in cancer treatment, these curveballs are not uncommon, and are managable with the right treatment regimen. I've heard incredible stuff about Evers and the other team members about their efficiency and promptness in controlling symptoms. I've worked with Dr Cohn on a couple of cases in the past, and he's always been very good to work with. So you're definately in good hands. If you'd like, this month's issue of RN Nursing Journal has an article on supporting patients through chemo, and it has a great patient guide. If you'd like, I'll copy it and give it to you.

Take care!
Jenn Smith

8:36 PM  
Blogger UisceBaGirl said...

When I saw Judy the only thing she asked me for was to pray for Jim. Of course I will! If it helps to motivate others to do the same, I want to share some research on the evidence that prayer is not just thoughts in your head or a one-way conversation with God/Your Higher Power. There's a lot of research on how prayers make a significant difference in people's rates of healing - even if they don't know they are being prayed for. See for more information about studies on the power of prayer for healing. These studies were conducted by medical doctors and meet the most stringent guidelines for medical research. [If you don't have time to read the information, please just take my word for it and use the time to pray.]

10:19 PM  
Blogger Micah said...

Glad to hear that it wasn't as bad as we'd feared. Can't wait to see you back at the pub, Jim!

9:54 AM  
Blogger John said...

Jim, I just got the link to your blog from Jenn. Just wanted you to know another Bahead is keeping you in their thoughs and prayers. Good Luck. I hope you'll be feeling up to dropping by the pub Thursday. If not we're all looking forward to seeing you back after you beat this thing.

John Y.

9:57 AM  
Blogger Ed said...

Happy Birthday Jim Guy!

10:27 AM  
Blogger Suzy Secretary said...

Happy 40th Birthday to my boss, my teacher, my friend.

3:57 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Happy Birthday Jim!

5:06 PM  
Blogger UisceBaGirl said...


I know this is not how you intended to spend your birthday, especially not this one. In some parallel universe another Jim Guy is in Ireland sleeping off all that ale/Guinness and that kind of sucks for the rest of us who are not in Ireland. Except that our Jim Guy is _here_ and maybe by being here with him we can provide some degree of hope and cheer.

So here's to your first 40 years, Jim! May the second 40 give you the opportunity to be just as successful, inspirational, and generous as you have been in the first four decades. May you also have in those decades the opportunity to watch your children grow and thrive and in their turn have their own families. This is my wish for you on your birthday.


7:41 PM  

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