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Time to Fight


William
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  • 5 weeks later...

Well, September 15th was a good day...saw Dr. Manz, one of the surgeons who preformed this procedure on me. He's actually the one who removed the required tissue from my leg and "reconstructed" my throat/neck inside and out. 

Needless to say he was very pleased. Basically just had me remove my neckband and Lary tube so he could slide a camera a few inches down too observe how the healing process has gone post surgery and from the 1 month of radiation. 

This did mark the first time I've seen Dr. Manz since at least the beginning of summer if not before. He was just in awe over how far I have came since late March. I'm basically doing what I want physically, but with limitations of course. Still experiencing numbness in my left shoulder and chest from the surgery. They had too slice alot of nerves ya know!

Appetite is great, I'm almost 190 pounds! That's a far cry from the 149 pounds late March. I actually had my first "choking" experience last week as a piece of meat got stuck. I actually panicked for a few seconds until I realized "Hey. I can still breathe". I regained my composure and massaged, swallowing continuously while sipping a drink. Got it down after a few minutes 👍

Also saw Dr. Driscoll in Radiology following this first appointment. He is the one that was in charge of my radiation treatment. He was quite pleased with the results of my healing and overall health. For the moment, he doesn't see any reason to reschedule any further appointments.

Were all kinda pulling back on the reins just a bit, even with all this great progress. My PET Scan will be the true deciding factor as too what my immediate and not so immediate future holds. That's a BIG day, October 7th....

Cancer can be a behind the scenes, sneaky, back door sonuva you know what, so we all are tempering our expectations. Don't get me wrong, I'm positive as hell, and is everyone else involved, just have to be realistic AND absolutely sure we have it's butt kicked!

Until then, see ya on the boards 😊👍

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, the defining moments are almost upon me...PET Scan tommorow late morning too see if I am cancer free.

The results come back fairly quickly as I will meet with entire surgical and treatment team too go over the results around 2pm tommorow afternoon.

Man, mentally preparing myself for this seems just as tough as mentally preparing for that surgery I had back in April.

Fingers crossed that I can look forward to that possible TEP surgery later this year. 

Fingers crossed 🤞

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19 minutes ago, William said:

Waiting to meet with the team too discuss my scan results :icon_popcorn:

I had too fast beginning at midnight last night so this popcorn is yummy!

Right there with ya Brother.

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Overall, a great day, although a long one! After it was all said and done, I  am cancer free! 

Just one little tiny spot by my collarbone lit up during the scan. A few things it could be...irritated flesh from radiation....a "floating" surture...or possibly a few stray cancer cells that "flipped" too the front during my April surgery. 

Dr. Ringstrom poked me a few times in that area too numb me up and took a sample for the lab. He feels confident that it's one of the former possibilities, but has too be sure.

If it's the latter, under the knife too cut it out I guess. Will know next week! A pic of where the area of concern is(the little stitches)

20221007_200037.jpg

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53 minutes ago, William said:

Overall, a great day, although a long one! After it was all said and done, I  am cancer free! 

Just one little tiny spot by my collarbone lit up during the scan. A few things it could be...irritated flesh from radiation....a "floating" surture...or possibly a few stray cancer cells that "flipped" too the front during my April surgery. 

Dr. Ringstrom poked me a few times in that area too numb me up and took a sample for the lab. He feels confident that it's one of the former possibilities, but has too be sure.

If it's the latter, under the knife too cut it out I guess. Will know next week! A pic of where the area of concern is(the little stitches)

20221007_200037.jpg

As a physician, it sounds VERY encouraging to me!

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Thank you for the thoughts my friends...definitely on the other side of things at this point for sure! It sure was nice to hear that imaging and cameras didn't see anything wrong in any of the areas where the cancer was concentrated! 

Worth mentioning, yesterday marked the first time that I have been together with Dr. Ringstrom, Manz, and Dr. Driscoll at the same appointment. Speech therapy was also there too see how things were going with my communication.

I was told that my progress has  been nothing short of remarkable. Dr. Driscoll (Radiation Therapy), and Speech therapy are just totally in awe of my vocal capabilities. They just can't believe that I have "trained" myself to talk again without any instruction videos, classes, or mechanical assistance. They told me it's quite unique because most people that have this procedure either can't form or speak words, speak only a few "interrupted" words at a time, or speak electronically. Here I am ripping off complete sentences. Without a voice box!

Guess I never thought about this on a larger scale with laryngectomy patients. I even brought up that surgery to implant the TEP device in my throat for speech (at one point in the past Dr. Ringstrom said I would be a good candidate). Dr. Driscoll smiled, shaking his head vigorously and said "Bill, you do not need it. Your speech is phenomenal".

All I can say is Thank God. And all the support that I have had on a personal, local and national level. That's where alot of my motivation came from. Knowing and always being reminded that I wasn't alone in this. This kind of thing is particularly tough both mentally and emotionally. Fortunately I haven't been brought down too far in those aspects. Not too say I haven't had my moments. But thanks to my tremendous support, I did rise above those moments.

Which leads me to mention something else. Towards the end of my appointment, I was asked if I would "speak" at a seminar for patients like myself. They feel that I would have such a positive influence on others who haven't progressed with their speech as well or are struggling emotionally. They said "Bill, you are darn near a one of a kind". Frankly, the only patient in the area who has gotten too this point". 

I am totally flattered and overcome. I obviously accepted and will be contacted with a date. Man, I was close to tears, especially being called, among other things, the "poster child" for Laryngectomy patients. Wow. It's so humbling! I am really looking forward to helping others with their progress! 

Thanks again my friends. You all, as with this wonderful hobby, will definitely have an honorable mention when I speak. After all, MarbleConnection and my extended family here HAVE been one of the keys to my so called success IMO!!

😊👍

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Oh my Gosh, I just now got the phone call regarding my biopsy. This is in regards too the tissue they took last Friday because it showed up as a potential "hot spot" during my PET scan.

Patty isn't awake yet so I can't tell her (wore out from the dig yesterday), but I can't contain my emotions!

Test Results came back Negative! Totally Benign! Inflamed Tissue!

My Friends....I Am Totally....

 

CANCER FREE!!!!!

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36 minutes ago, William said:

Oh my Gosh, I just now got the phone call regarding my biopsy. This is in regards too the tissue they took last Friday because it showed up as a potential "hot spot" during my PET scan.

Patty isn't awake yet so I can't tell her (wore out from the dig yesterday), but I can't contain my emotions!

Test Results came back Negative! Totally Benign! Inflamed Tissue!

My Friends....I Am Totally....

 

CANCER FREE!!!!!

Awesome!  Answered pray!

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