That’s how much Mom’s tumors have shrunk!!! We can’t believe it!!!
When we started this treatment (XL 184, a Phase I clinical trial), the doctor said that the goal was to stop the progression of the cancer. She didn’t give us hope that the cancer would actually shrink. We were just going to try to stop it from growing.
Mom’s CT scans show that the largest tumor, the one on her left side has not grown. It hasn’t shrunk either, but apparently, the tissue looks necrotic (dying), so that is a good sign! The rest of the tumors have shrunk (overall) by 5%.
Everyone at the doctor’s office was happy – even the blood tech guy, Mom said! This is the 6th week of the study, but Mom has only taken the drug for 5 weeks because Dr. T took her off of it while she was trying to get Mom’s kidneys functioning again. She has also been on a lower dosage (60 mg instead of the 100 mg she started out taking) so even a reduced amount of the medication is working!
I had a feeling that she would get good news today. She has felt much better the past few weeks now that we are making sure she is eating and staying well-hydrated. Her calcium level is within normal range which means she’s not suffering from the depression, confusion, extreme fatigue, etc. that plagued her for months before we knew what was going on. Her creatanine level is nearly perfect, so we’re not worried about her kidneys. She has had trouble eating on occasion and has experienced some nausea, but I’ll take that over failing kidneys any day! (Mom says she will, too!)
I also noticed that the ascites (the fluid that builds up from the cancer creating its own blood supply) wasn’t coming back very fast after Mom had the tap three weeks ago. She hasn’t been uncomfortable or in pain – she hasn’t taken a pain pill in three weeks! – and the endocrinologist said two weeks ago that the medicine must be working because the calcium level was stabilizing. Her body is finally back to “normal” so the medication can do its job.
This might sound a little confusing, like I’m rambling, but the basic fact is that today, April 27, 2010, we got good news about Mom’s cancer.
XL 184 just kicked 5% of Primary Peritoneal Cancer’s ass!!!