Dad had his 3 month follow up at Mayo today with a repeat PET scan and blood work. Since his last visit he had quite the excitement while they were in Arizona. The first episode started with him having light headed spells. When he went to the ER they found his hemoglobin to be 6. This is well below the normal of 13.
If you remember this was how they found his cancer a year ago so there was due worry. When they did the endoscopy they found a bleed just below where his cancer originally was. They felt it might be due to the radiation weakening the walls of the esophagus which caused the bleed. What they didn’t see was any evidence of his tumor. Now this wasn’t a clean bill of health, but a really good sign.
A couple of weeks later he started having fainting type episodes. Once again he went to the ER. This time they found his heart rate to be in the 40’s, which is much too low so they put a pacemaker in. He continued to have these episodes with the final one resulting in a fall that chipped his elbow. He went back to ER where they did a complete workup with scans and stress tests. The one thing they found was his atrial fibrillation was acting up. He has had this for years and us been on a blood thinner to prevent a clot from forming. They decided that this could very well be the culprit and unfortunately his original pacemaker didn’t account for this so he need to have a different one placed. Since then he has been doing pretty well. The fainting episodes have disappeared.
Now that you are caught up I’ll get to today’s follow up with Mayo. I wasn’t able to attend so this is what my mom has told me and what the progress note says. Dad had his repeat PET scan and blood work and it was the best news we could have asked for! No evidence of disease! The chemo, radiation and all of your prayers worked. I think I’m still in shock. If you recall this type of cancer is usually caught late and prognosis isn’t good and most cases end up in surgery to remove the esophagus. So far he has been able to avoid the surgery. He will need to stay under a watchful eye and go back in for a repeat PET scan and blood work in 3 months.
Thank you so much for all your thoughts and prayers and keep them coming for continued healing.