Wednesday, January 4, 2017

New, Improved Diagnosis

We met with Dr. Gouw at LDS hospital this afternoon. You can't see me smiling in this picture, but we all are happy. I'm wearing a mask to protect Dr. Gouw from me, not the other way round! I have a cold, but am not feeling too bad.

The results of the pathologist from Mass General came in. Dr.Nancy Harris is a pathologist at Harvard Medical School and a leading expert in her field. She was able to do some tests that only a few labs can do, and concluded (by ruling everything else out) that I have Splenic Marginal Zone Lymphoma.

The good news is that it is a very indolent disease and doesn't progress much at all. I can live with it and just monitor it. If I get more symptoms or my blood tests change they could look into treating it, but as it is, I appear to be quite stable with it. If my abdominal pains get uncomfortable, perhaps they could remove the spleen, which might even cure the cancer. But, because this cancer is not aggressive, I might have years before anything would need to be done. And by then they might have different treatments!

So, I'm entering a monitoring phase with monthly blood draws and quarterly visits to the doctor. If everything appears stable we can space the blood draws and doctor visits further apart. We will also transfer to Dr. Halwani at Huntsman for the monitoring. If anything new comes up on the horizon he would be in a position to let us know.


  1. Judy, I have been praying for you since we got your Christmas letter. Praise the Lord. That's great news.