Date: Sun, 25 Jan 2004 01:59:41 EST
Subject: More details.. ..
Dear Henry and Nachum
I just sent a more detailed account of my situation to Gavriel, and I will use the same explanation as I sent to him to both of you. Please excuse this simplification of effort, but it makes sense to me. Most of all, I want each of you to have the SAME information.
What I am about to write is not easy to write, and will not be easy to read. What I did not perhaps fully explain before is that Dr. Groisser had ordered a CAT scan for me when I began a new treatment with Remicade, an infusion, about ten months ago. That CAT scan was relatively 'normal.' But then, as my stomach pains persisted he thought that there were new problems with my Ileitis [Crohn's] and no doubt there are. So last week he ordered another CAT scan.
But what he [fortuitously ? ] found was a problem with my liver. Foreign masses/growths in the liver, to be exact.
These could be considered tiny tumors. They compared this with the previous CAT scan done at the start of the Remicade treatment but the liver had shown no abnormality then [thank G-d]. This problem, then, is recent. The question now is, did these masses originate in the liver [which would be easier to remove] or elsewhere ?
A biopsy was done Thursday and a preliminary diagnoses Friday, said, unfortunately, that the origin lies elsewhere: either in my colon or esophagus. Colon cancer is always a potential eventual complication for Crohn's disease, but it can be treated. Dr. Groisser has performed a colonoscopy annually or biannually on me for several years, now. Spreading to the liver is a further possible complication, and now seems likely. But it, too, can be treated.
Monday I go for additional tests as to the origin of the cells, because different cells are treated differently, according to origin, even if they travel to the liver.
I find all of this rather shocking, to say the least, as I have grown used to being in good health, other than my Crohn's [an inflammation of the small bowel].
But I will transfer my case ASAP to New York University Hospital or Memorial Sloan-Kettering, which have the absolutely best departments in this field in the world. I have consulted with several secondary doctors already, as this is my big effort/interest of course, just now.
One would like to 'spare' close loved-ones from such news, but there is no point in that, I guess. I do not know the survival rate, and I suppose there are many individual factors affecting a cure beyond mere statistical ones, anyway.
If you have any questions please let me know. I appreciate being in contact with you and hearing from you.
Much love, Dad