Kicking the Surgery Can Down the Road

Thank you for all the encouraging responses to my last couple emails, for your prayers and your very positive and helpful thoughts for us.

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Yesterday I met with my Oncologist for PET Scan results.  Here’s where I’m at:

  • The cancer has become more active over the past 22 months after my chemo-radiation treatments.  SUV factors (brightness of PET radiation) shows 3.86 before I started treatment in 2014; 6.25 after chemo-radiation treatments; and 13 SUV now.
  • One lymph node adjacent to the esophagus shows up at 2.5 SUV.
  • The cancer, while active, is still confined to the esophagus.
  • While natural treatments didn’t stop the cancer or kill it, they may have helped confine it for the past months.
  • Being out 22 months from treatment (Jan 2015) means I’ve already outlived a good % of people who have the same cancer.  Stats are not so clear on percentages and my Doc said the 50-50% I quoted before is not accurate.  It’s probably more like 30-40% survive after 5 years from treatment.

Here’s the medical decision I have to make soon — again, any thoughts for me?

Since the cancer is still localized, I could do the surgery (and we all know what that looks like :-)) and be a possible candidate for a cure.  Cure is defined as totally eliminating this cancer from the body and extending my life for a number of years cancer-free.

If I don’t go for ‘cure,’ the other track is palliative, which means I work to control the active cancer in the esophagus and body as long as I can with natural and medical means, thus extending my life for a number of years.

With active cancer in my body, I can’t wait too long if I want the surgery option.  Once the cancer metastasizes beyond the lymph node into the lymph system (natural progression), I will have reached the point of no return for surgery.  Then there is only the palliative path to walk.

This is like a fork in the road — I must commit to the right or the left.

Present Decision:  Sheri and I are packed to head to San Diego this morning, and to drive into Mexico on Thursday to begin the alternative treatments for this cancer by Dr. Castillo.

So you could say, my present decision is to ‘kick the surgery can’ down the road — like Congress and the President have done with our national deficit can of 21 trillion dollars!

At some point I’ll have to decide which fork in the road I’ll take and it will be the final decision.

For now, thanks for your prayers for us as we head in this alternative direction of Mexico.

Dr. Castillo wants to (1) stop the cancer from growing (2) prevent further spreading , and (3) reduce the size.

If the Lord blesses this direction, I will have some more years on this earth.  And, of course, the hope of heaven awaits.  What a glorious future that will be!  Looks like a win – win to me!

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9 thoughts on “Kicking the Surgery Can Down the Road


  1. Knowing that our future is secure in the hands of a God who loves us more than it is possible for us to fathom is, of course, the ultimate consolation. As you youself have pointed out, it puts you in the winners circle in any event. What strenth you must derive in knowing the love of all of us whose lives you have strenghtened over the years is at your disposal in this hard journey. You remain daily in our prayers–both of you.
    Dick and Elaine


  2. Dave and Sheri,
    I support you both in your decision and am praying for you! You are in good hands with God and I think you are making a wise choice medically. Profess your healing (while unseen) and I believe it will be manifest in the physical.


  3. A prayerful thought from me would be to have the surgery and continue with the direction the Lord is taking you with service. Either decision would have my prayers.


  4. Praying for a safe and successful trip?. I also think you have made the right choice.
    You guys are loved by so many people, have made such an impact for the Kingdom and are such an inspiration to so many of us of what it looks like to put feet to your faith. God bless you with peace and his strength as you walk this tough road.
    Enjoy the sunshine in San Diego☀️


    1. Hello dear ones:

      Thank you for continuing to share your journey with us.

      Dave I personally would do the surgery!!! I know a gentleman who had the surgery and I will try to find out more from him. He lives of n England. He does very well and I would have never known he had that surgery if he didn’t mention it. My prayers, love and hugs to you both!
      Simona


  5. We think the path you’ve chosen is the best one. Any alternative to removing your esophagus is better. We know this is a hard choice and
    know it comes with a lot of unknowns. Our prayers for you both.


  6. A tough decision. So sorry that you are is this situation. Our daughter has recently needed to make a decision, too. Not as serious but life changing. We are praying for God’s guidance for you. We know the outcome is in His hands although the way is not clear. Blessings, Phil & Carol


  7. I pray that you are lead to make the right decisions regarding your treatment options. I also pray that you may have a return to good health. I pray for you both to have assurance and peace that comes from knowing our loving God is in control. Blessings, Carol


  8. God promises that if we ask Him for guidance, He answers. God says, I am Healer. Ex 15:26, Is 57:18. Ultimately He is the one who heals. Joining with you in praying for His healing.

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