Monday, January 12, 2009

S.O.S Update - A note from Sam re: the next phase- radiation

We had a good visit w/ the head nurse and one of the doctor team members who will be
doing the gamma knife procedure on the remaining part of the meningioma (growth)
that is remaining in my head and the growth that is on my left IAC (Inner Auditory
Canal). The lead doctor was not in the office, so we were not able to meet her
today. The two we met were very nice and helpful - very willing to answer questions
and explain the procedure. I can see why these consultations ahead of the surgery
are necessary, but I wish I had understood from the beginning what this appointment
was about.

It will probsbly be at least a couple of weeks before the radiation can be
scheduled. Several people will be a part of the team, so they have to schedule the
radiation around their availability. The DR said that on the day of the radiation,
we'll get started very early (5-6 am). First thing they'll do is fasten my head
inside a metal frame. Then I'll have an very detailed MRI. After that the medical
team will meet to map out the procedure. Each treatment is specifically designed
for that particular patient. For some, the radiation is fairly quick, but, from the
way Dr. White talked earlier and from what the DR today said, it will be several
hours. They may even take me out of the machine and let me sit up. Not sure how
that will work! I think the purpose will be to let me change positions, but, more
importantly, to allow time for the doctors to map out the next part of their plan as
they move to another area.

I will not be under a general anesthesia. They will provide local anesthesia to the
areas of my head where the frame will be attached. They said I will not even feel
this part, which will be done by my neurosurgeon, Dr. White. After that and the
MRI, I will be given something during the radiation to help me relax and I will
probably sleep during most of the radiation. The RN & DR were both very reassuring
about the gamma knife radiation treatment and said it will not be a difficult,
painful experience.

Sorry I did not get this to you sooner. I rested some when I got home. We'll let
you know when we hear about a date.

Love you all,

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