Wow, what a busy day it’s been for Ana. She had many visitors including my parents, her grandma Janne who is staying with us at Ronald McDonald house until Friday and (best of all for Ana) three good friends from school. She also had an ultrasound of her abdomen which she was extremely well-behaved for.
I spoke with a lot of people today including the attending oncologist (twice) and the surgeon Dr. McCann. Actually, I’m not sure that I got his name right but I’ll try to clarify tomorrow. I finally got to see the CT scan of the mass and it’s really just unbelievably large. All of her digestive organs are pushed down and the tumor fills her entire abdomen up into her ribcage. No wonder she’s in pain. It also explains the look on the Kingston ER doctor’s face when he told us the news.
So, while we don’t yet have a diagnosis or even a definitive confirmation that this is cancer, we did learn a few new things.
1) The biopsy is showing that the tumor cells are not liver cells which means that the mass is not coming from her liver.
2) They are doing more tests with the existing biopsy to see if they can find the origin of the tumor. If they can’t find what they need, she will need a more in-depth biopsy where they actually go in and take a sample.
3) Her AFP test came back completely normal – elevated AFP levels can indicate liver cancer. This is another indication that the tumor isn’t originating from her liver.
4) There’s one lobe of her liver that is disease-free, which is good because it means her liver is functioning right now (they still may not be able to save it because of the extent of tumor involvement in the liver’s blood flow)
5) At some point the surgeon is going to need to place a central line which is how they plan on administering treatment. As scary as this is, it means a lot less pain for Ana in terms of needle sticks and blood draws.
This means more **** waiting, but I hope that tomorrow will give us more information so we can figure out how to move forward. We may get a visit from the liver transplant team as well tomorrow.
Thanks again to everyone for your support and love. Thank you Mom and dad for bringing me socks and bendy straws. Thank you Janne for sticking with me, even though I’m grumpy and not fun to be around. Thank you Tania, Liz and Jodi for lending me your children. It meant so much to Ana. I haven’t heard her laugh like that in a while.