Recovery Status (04/26/2013 Update)

2013-04-19 PreOpPictureSurgery Status

As last reported there were two larger tumors confirmed on both the initial and follow-up MRI.  However, there was uncertainty regarding shadows seen on the initial MRI, not seen on the follow-up MRI.  It was possible that these shadows were smaller tumors that shrunk and therefore were not visible on the follow-up MRI.  An ultrasound is a more reliable way to see tumors/lesions and therefore, as part of the surgery, an ultrasound was first done to verify the location of the two known tumors AND to see if there were in fact smaller tumors present.

The surgery turned out to be the best case scenario we could hope for!  The two larger tumors were the only lesions found (per the ultrasound) and they were both surgically removed with clear margins. Praise the Lord; His Mercy never fails! 

The next step in my cancer fight is to recover from the surgery; and so far I’ve been on a fast-track recovery plan just as the doctor anticipated. My part in the recovery is to rest, eat quality foods, and do moderate exercise (walking and breathing exercises).  And I’ve been trying to do them faithfully.

If everything continues as it has been going I expect to be back to work Monday May 6 (with minimal restriction).  The doctor’s assistants have discussed that I will need to; 1) avoid lifting anything over 5lbs, pushing or pulling heavy things, or stressing the abdomen area in general, and 2) listening to the body and resting as needed (don’t overdo it).

This first week of recovery has also included managing pain medication.  I have two pain medications; over-the counter Tylenol and a stronger prescription medication. The goal is to use the pain medications to moderate pain but to wean off of them as the healing allows.  Trying to wean off of them too quick will result in increased pain levels and a slower rate of healing. I need to be off of the prescription in order to drive and therefore my focus has been on using less of this drug as time passes.

Today I have gone without the prescription medication since 2am and I’m feeling pretty good.  I’ve found that I tended to need this stronger medication during the night.  Sleeping involves tossing and turning and getting in/out of bed and these activities tended to stress the abdomen area moreso than sitting or walking.  So getting through a night with minimal reliance on the prescription drug is definitely progress.

This is the Day that the LORD has made; Let us rejoice and be Glad In It!

I hope that I am beyond the need for the full doses and I’m looking forward to being a little more alert and mobile. This morning I took advantage of the warm and sunny weather (and the availability of a professional dog walker). We went on a little nature walk and it was very refreshing indeed. And given the near-term weather forecast; I’m hoping to do a little more walking over the week-end.  2013-04-26 Walking The Dogs

I’m scheduled to visit both the surgeon and oncologist on May 16.  They will assess the healing and determine if I am ready to begin chemo treatments.  As soon as I’m deemed ready I’ll begin a series of eight more chemo treatments over several months (to kill remaining cancer cells).  While I’m not looking forward to once-again dealing with the side-effects of chemo at least this time I know these treatments are effective AND there is a strong hope that this cancer will be put into a full remission, especially with all the prayer support from you!!!

Thank you all again from the bottom of my heart…  For your Prayers..  Encouraging cards and messages… Visiting and calling… And generous acts and kindness…

I am truly a very lucky person to be surrounded by so many loving and beutiful family and friends.

Love and Light to you!



10 Comments on “Recovery Status (04/26/2013 Update)”

  1. Tim Dechant says:

    Great update Phil! Keep pushing through this and be sure to let your body heal!

  2. pjmaguire says:

    Wonderful to hear the surgery went well. Get your rest!

  3. Maureen Myers says:

    So glad to hear you’re progressing so well! Keep up the good work and well see you soon!

  4. Jerry Schmidt says:

    I’m practically in tears Phil. I’m so happy for you. Keep on progressing. We will keep on praying for good outcomes. Take care.

  5. Mr. Scamihorn, praise the Lord from whom ALL blessings flow!!!! May the Lord continue to heal you and restore your health!!! Many continued blessings and miracles!!!! Pamela (Frierson) Lue-Hing (Patronage of St. Joseph)

  6. Linda Sult says:

    God is good!! Thanks for sharing your wonderful news. Keep up the work an continue the healing process.

  7. Krea says:

    Phil: It is good to hear this update from you. I pray that you will continue to heal day-by-day! The LORD is good all the time — all the time He is good!

  8. Beth Penxa says:

    Hurray!!!!!!!! Congrats on all the wonderful forward motion 🙂

  9. Johnny and Lori Scamihorn says:

    Great news. We love you and hope to come visit soon.

  10. Naomi says:

    Phil, Your faith and strength are amazing and a great inspiration to others who are facing cancer. You are always in our prayers. Naomi

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