Tuesday, August 14, 2007

MRI Results

The good news is that there doesn’t seem to be any cancer in the brain, bones, or liver. The bad news is that the radiographer thinks I have “fairly solid lesions” and soft mass in the right lung, plus fluid in the lining of both lungs. His report said it’s probably cancer and needs follow-up. My oncologist, who reviewed the films and report with me, said she doesn’t think it’s the lung so she called the head of the radiology department and had him take a look. This guy, in turn, said no, that bit on the lung is not cancer, but look here at the chest wall. Now THAT looks worrisome.

So I’m scheduled for a PET-CT scan for the whole body. It just figures that the ONE part of the body that the MRI isn’t that accurate about is the place where I have something funny going on. And after my expensive decision to do the MRI in order to avoid radiation exposure, I have to do a PET-CT scan anyway. This is the one where they inject radioactive glucose solution into your blood, then put you inside a tunnel machine to pick up this radioactive tracer to see where it goes. The tracer goes anywhere in the body where there are active cancer cells because sugar is food for cancer. The glucose dosage is only one four-thousandth of a teaspoon of sugar, so imagine how bad sugar is for cancer. I’ll be avoiding sugar even more now.

The thing about all these scans is… I’ve read about studies that show there’s no difference in survival outcomes for patients who have intensive screening and those who just have clinical exams every three months. But that makes no sense to me. If they find more cancer in me, isn’t it better to find it early, before it spreads too much to treat? I think these studies are flawed. Common sense tells me the earlier you find it and treat it, the better your chance of survival. I’m going to ignore these studies. Just like I’m going to ignore the survival statistics. I’m not going to be dead in five years. I just won’t do it.

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