Responsibility 199, what is it?

Responsibility 199 is a belief; I believe that to be healthy and to increase my longevity I need to weigh 199 pounds or less...
Responsibility 199 is a need; I need to reduce my weight, reduce my percentage of body fat, and the elevated threat of disease my present condition presents...
Responsibility 199 is a mission; I recognize that achieving 199 will be a challenge, perhaps the hardest I have ever undertaken...
Responsibility 199 is a commitment; I acknowledge that I must commit to action, commit to change, commit to myself and those I love to achieve this mission, to increase my longevity...
Responsibility 199 is ME.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 342 - Good News & More Waiting

THANK YOU for the continued well wishes via comments, tweets, emails, facebook, etc... very very much appreciated!

Yesterday's appointment with the surgical oncologist was positive. The doctor gained my confidence which was on my checklist. Being a doctor in a specialty where the majority of your patients are there to seek hope for grim situations cannot be easy labor.

The good news, she did a full physical in search for other candidates of melanoma on my skin, head to toe; found nothing warranting concern. So big sighs of relief were in order with that news.

The waiting game continues however while I wait for some procedures to be scheduled. Next up is a PET Scan, the picture up there is of a random image I found. So what is a PET Scan, I did not know before this discussion. Long story short this procedure will help illuminate anywhere in my body where cancerous cells may exist. I should hear today from my medical oncologist, different person than my surgical oncologist, when that scan can be performed.

Then within a few days or so after the PET Scan is complete & results read I'll go in for the sentinel lymph node biopsy. Long story short this procedure will result in a very specific lymph node being identified and then removed for analysis to determine if the melanoma that was removed from my forehead had a chance to spread via the lymphatic system. If it has, it will show up in this specific node. Obviously were are hoping this node is clean which would mean the cancer has not spread that way.

At the same time the oncologist surgeon is hunting down that lymph node (can take 2-3 hours) the plastic surgeon will go back to work on my forehead and remove more tissue around the original scar as a precaution to ensure any rouge cells from the melanoma site had not deposited in that area; another ugly characteristic of melanoma. Hence when you see pictures of very advances melanoma tumor sites they are spread out in irregular patters, they spawn rouge cells that move out a few millimetres to a centimeter from the original and get nasty there.

For all of this I will be knocked out, which was a bummer; I asked if I could be awake for it all as I am a science geek; they said nope, this is not something you want to be awake for. I think the real answer is that THEY don't want me awake through it asking questions.

There are two ways melanoma spreads (metastasizes), the via the lymphatic system or via the blood stream. Hence why the PET Scan, that procedure is primarily being used to see if this has spread via the blood stream.Obviously were are hoping this scan looks as clean a fresh sheet of canvas.

So thats the nut-shell version of where I am at. In an hour I will call the scheduling desk at the hospital and schedule the PET Scan, and we'll go from there.

Please tell me you have more exciting happenings go on in your lives today!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!


  1. I'm glad the doctor did not find any other areas of concern! I hope that your PET scan turns out that you are okay. It's good to take the steps to ensure that you're healthy for the long-run. Consider what you're doing with the PET scans long-term health maintenance. On the other hand, eating right TODAY and exercising TODAY ensures a healthy body in the more immediate future. So make sure you're covering your short-term and long-term future, mister! Have a great weekend!!

  2. I like good news. I've lurked though the story because this really does run in my family. Damned fair Irish skin.

    I continue to send positive thoughts toward the greater Chicago area. Keep that good news coming.

  3. I will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers, Patrick. I hope it is all gone and there is nothing else to worry about. Nothing exciting going on here. Just doing the same "get through the day" dance as always. Hang in there and remember that you have friends who care.

  4. Still sending good thoughts and prayers your way.
    Sounds like you have a competent doctor and they're going to make sure you're asagood as new.

    I'm afraid I have nothing exciting to report today. But it's Friday and that's always good.

  5. Still sending prayers and good thoughts your way. You are already a survivor and you will beat this! That waiting totally sucks, but I have been there through all of this with my husband when he had Cancer. And, you are stronger than you ever believe you could be. We will celebrate for you this weekend since it's my birthday.

  6. Ive got nothing here and I always say sometimes routine is a gift.

    praying for you and your family.
    I know this is plain ole STRESSFUL for everyone.


  7. How happy I am for positive news!!! Continued prayers going up.

    I had 1 son totally make up a story in place of narrating to me what he was supposed to have read for natural science today. Imagine his surprise when I checked it out, and he has to do it again! HA! :)

  8. I've been thinking of you and hope you will hear more good news.

  9. Patrick - I had no idea. It's been a while since I've stopped by your blog. I'm happy to hear things are moving in the right direction. My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family.

  10. first things first. Nig hug and prayers your way

    second Sucker Punch comes out today you should take a minute to go see it and get your mind off things :)

  11. that was supposed to be big hug

  12. I'm glad the news so far has been positive. I pray it will continue to be.

    Too bad about all the procedures, but it is good we have them to know what to do.

    Thanks for sharing. I know it must be hard to do.

  13. Patrick, you have lots of tests happening but the important thing is to get answers & make sure you are OK & stay healthy so worth the crap to find out the rest.. it sucks during it except that science geek comment by you! ;-)

    I am going to send this to my friend that also has been fighting this just for informational sake. She is the one that had the doctor give her this cram she had to put on her face & depending on what it did, it showed more caner or not - I think that is what she said... I am bad at relating this stuff....

    Anyway, I am glad you are doing all this so you can take action if necessary OR at the best, find out all is OK! HUGS!

  14. I've been reading and thing of you. Sending best wishes to you and your family for a speedy and complete recovery.

  15. that was supposed to say thinking of you.

  16. I'm behind and I'm sorry for it! I'm thrilled there are no other areas of concern but waiting is a tough game to play! I'll be praying the rest of the tests will come back clean as a whistle!!!! I'm sending good thoughts your way!

  17. I'm just catching up! So sorry for your situation, BUT also so relieved to hear there is some good news as well. :)

  18. I prefer to be knocked out, but I'm sorry you can't enjoy it. I'm happy to hear that the doc didn't find anything else, and I wish you the same with the pet scan!

  19. Oh I would not want to be awake during any test. I was through a was a frightful experience, and I kept saying am I not supposed to fall asleep...yes, yes was the answer....not. ...I will be praying for you during all these tests and praying for that clean sheet of canvas for sure. I hope you are able to have a wonderful weekend doing something that takes your mind off this for a bit. be well.

  20. At least you had a few sighs of relief today. I hate the waiting game. It can be a pain in the butt and make you feel crazy.

    I wish I had something exciting planned to tell you about!


  21. Still wishing you the best.... not much exciting here unless you thing snow is exciting....

  22. Hey Patrick, Thanks for your good wishes. I'm home. re being awake for the procedure, I was awake for mine (on my upper back) but the medical student who wanted to watch the procedure couldn't stay in the room--he ran out and never came back! I'm keeping you in my prayers. Waiting is so difficult, I know, but you can do it. We'll be waiting with you. God bless.

  23. I am so grateful for the good news and will wait to hear on the rest. However, I think you are foolish to want to be awake during the procedure. If I could, I would be on a margarita drip while doing my taxes.

    My thoughts are with you.

  24. Glad you have confidence in your doc that is really important. Glad she didn't find anything more and glad she is going through all the tests needed to make sure there isn't anything anywhere. My thoughts and prayers are with you Patrick and I'm sorry I've been a stranger lately. Spending some time catching up with you today.