Today was the big meeting with the surgical oncologist at UMC. I’d like to say that he had some brilliant plan and I was amazed by him…
The appointment started with a medical student asking about my patient history. She was nice enough, but when you’re expecting some super awesome surgeon, it’s disappointing to be met with someone that almost forgets to do a physical assessment. Much like others around me, she was impressed that I still work, am going to school and living as if I am healthy. I keep trying to remind people that except for the mild back pain and the vomiting, I really am pretty healthy. I wouldn’t know I had cancer had it not been found.
It took another twenty minutes or so before Dr. Ong made his entrance. My first thoughts: where is the real doctor, this guy is just way too young to be a surgeon. Seriously, Milo and I guesstimate that he was in his late thirties. Given how well known he is and the fact he is a surgeon, this man is the Asian Doogie Howser. It’s really odd to have a doctor not much older than you telling you what plans he has for your life.
Unfortunately, this one didn’t exactly have plans. He told me he won’t do surgery; it would take away from the good quality of life I have right now. He also said that he can’t predict how long I will live because cholangiocarcinoma doesn’t respond like other tumors. He recommended bringing my case to their hepatobiliary cancer team and seeing if anyone else had any ideas on treatment options. His final word was that he wouldn’t cut until it was necessary and that no surgeon was going to go after the tumors in my chest. My tumors are a death sentence.
I was pretty devastated.
I’m still pretty devastated.
Milo and I are going to start working out what to do from here. In two weeks we’ll know what the medical committee has to say about treatment options and prolonging my life. I am trying not to give up hope, but I feel as if it’s all rather bleak right now. I’m too late to be saved is something I hear a lot of. If only it was a different type of tumor…