I have news! And it’s GOOD news!
My most recent chest x-ray showed an improvement as compared to the one taken in the hospital in mid-November. My doctor estimated an improvement of 15-20%. This means I am responding to the Xalkori treatment. It also means we don’t have to consider chemo for a while – YAY!
How long will I stay on this medicine?
I will certainly stay on it while we continue to see improvement. At the point where my response plateaus, I expect we will compare that with the potential response from other treatments. If the Xalkori response is expected to be most favorable (and it is), then I will stay on Xalkori until I develop a resistance and the disease progresses again.
How much disease control will I get from Xalkori?
That’s the new million dollar question. And honestly, it’s not a matter of percentage – I don’t know how a 40% improvement would feel. I’m curious to know how much healthier I can feel while I live with this disease. Now that I know I’m responding, I’m suddenly very greedy for more details!
Why am I not jumping up and down for joy?
I was very relieved to hear the results of the x-ray. Relieved that my lungs didn’t get worse, pleased that there is a response, and happy that the last 4 weeks haven’t been wasted.
For me, it’s important to keep everything in perspective. This is good news in that it helps me know what’s next. It also gives me more hope – I’m now confident that I will see another Christmas. I couldn’t say that just a few days ago.
And on the eve of my 31st birthday, I can also tell you that I most certainly will see 32!