What is the Path Ahead?

Well, the doctor visits are in, and the result is the need for a PET scan on Sept. 16 to give us some metrics and determine if the cancer we just found has metastasized.  Then we can decide on treatment path.


Here’s what we know up to now:

  • The esophageal cancer (EC) has returned or was always lurking there after my chemo-radiation.
  • So I now know, even though I sought the Lord for a supernatural touch of healing, He chose not to give that to me.  I’m okay with that since my responsibility is to obey and His is to govern.
  • My miracle thus far was how I came through the 24 radiation treatments without any side-effects!
  • The cancer is called ‘poorly differentiated,’ which means it has mutated quite far afield from the original healthy cells.  This could have happened through radiation.  This makes it more dangerous.
  • The natural treatments we’ve taken to-date have created a very healthy body for me.  My blood tests and pressure over the past 22 months have been top-notch.  I have no other health issues, except the lurking cancer which is causing me no ill effect at this time.
  • But the natural treatments have not totally stopped the cancer.  There has been a slight growth of the mass in the esophagus and of course, the presence of cancer.
  • The treatments may have kept the cancer from spreading, but I’ll know that for certain through the PET scan.

With this reality staring us in the face, I am on the cusp of another major decision:  If the cancer has not metastasized,

(1) I am still a candidate for surgery which has a 50% chance of being curative.

(2) Or I can continue to treat this with additional natural treatments in a palliative way.

This total blog post is long, so I’m breaking it up into two parts.  Tomorrow I’ll send the second half — the nitty gritty of the two paths we face, and it’s not a pretty sight.

Would you like to weigh in on the decision?  What would you do if this were you and why?  Leave your answer in the comment box below.



10 thoughts on “What is the Path Ahead?

  1. Dave, I can’t figure out for myself any better way to handle or react any better or alternatively than you are doing. I see in you the strength, the fighting spirit and faith to face facts. That to me reminds of Abraham in Romans 4, who “faced facts as they were” and then believed in the God of the impossibilities.
    That’s the faith I see in your handling of the situation. In other words, YOU ARE A BRAVE man. Thanks for keeping us in the know and modeling how to handle challenging life issues as they confront us.

    1. Ditto to friends comments, Dave!
      I favor your planguage of Naturopathy. Praying!
      Loving hugs.

  2. Oh, Dave and Sherri, I have no idea what I would do in your situation. Hopefully, I would pray and seek God’ path as much as you are. I am not even a good friend of yours! I am only acquainted with you because I married Dave, which makes me even less of a voice of wisdom for you. Perhaps I would just want my brothers and sisters in Christ to remind me that my story is not as important as God’s story. What God is creating through your experience is beyond our ability to comprehend, but not beyond our reach of faith. I will continue to pray for you to be courageous and at peace as you take your steps of faith in this journey.

  3. I also am not offering a suggestion for what you should do because I don’t have a clue. I will, however, pray for you and for God to give you wisdom and show you clearly what HE wants you to do.
    You guys and your amazing faith put me to shame. You have walked this hard road keeping your eyes so focused on Jesus and with amazing courage and grace. And I know you will do the same with the upcoming decisions you will be facing. You guys are my heroes!!
    Love to you❤️

  4. I’m praying for His presence with you, His peace, His wisdom, His grace. I don’t know the answer but He does . . .
    Love you both!

  5. Thoughts and prayers go out to you and the whole family. You have touched so many lives including mine. The Lord has set the days of our lives and we can find comfort in knowing nothing will shorten that time. I support your decision as I know it has been made with lots of prayer. We love you both.

  6. We’ve never met, but a fellow EC friend has pointed me to your blog. You’ve made a valiant effort thus far, and as an 6+ yr EC survivor thanks to OHSU multi-modality therapy, I would encourage you to see Drs. Hunter or Dolan. Having been volunteering here at OHSU Foregut clinic for the past 5 yrs, I have seen the dreadful consequences of uncontrolled EC. Wishing you well.

    1. Claude, Thanks for writing me. We’ve heard wonderful things about your work at OHSU Esophageal Cancer Center from Tom and Mad. We had a couple great hours with them the other day as well. Yesterday we had a consultation with Dr. Brant Oelschlager, at the UofW Cancer Center. I found out I’m still a candidate for the surgery as long as we know it has not metasticized. To-date that’s where I’m at. We discussed a way forward allopathically with Herpicin chemo that responds well to my type cancer, and then the surgery. I’m processing. My path thus far with the natural treatments has provided a couple years of very good quality of life, and now I’ve got to have a couple more months to see if my recent Mexico treatments are having any effect. It’s a tight-rope walk for me — try to stay intact physically and control it, vs. not waiting too long for the surgery option that we see metastisis. I’m taking today to process all of this. Since you are a 6+ year survivor of the operation without return of cancer, I’d like to skype with you at some point. Will be in touch.

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