Saturday, May 17, 2014

A big thank you!

Oops, my first attempt at uploading video, HOPE IT WORKS!

It only took me a few DAYS to figure out!

Here is Albert, celebrating the end of proton therapy by ringing the GONG!!

Congratulations my dear!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Warning! Graphic post!

So I told you guys that radiation treatments are over, YAAAY!!!

It took 7 weeks to complete!  Monday through Friday, every week, for a total of 35, yes 35 sessions!

Some of the early sessions were super late at night, some of the later sessions were super early in the morning.  I think the latest we were there was past midnight and the earliest was at 6 am, but the appointments were all throughout the day.  At some points they were giving him a new schedule daily.  They make things happen for all their patients and so are very accommodating when other appointments run long or test results go crazy!

I think the longest appointment was about an hour, maybe a little longer.  That was the first one.  They needed to make sure the forms were all in place and that everything was lined up.  He was beamed with the laser twice, and at some points three times, per session.  I think the fastest session was 15 minutes!

Albert's treatment area was large.  It started as a mild sunburn and eventually turned into this, crispy, peeling, hot mess!

The white sphere taped to his chest helps with identification/location of the tumor and placement of the beam, as well as a marker for the x-rays.  Albert says it hurts like walking with a marble in your sock.  It created an intense pressure point, pain, and eventually numbed the nerves into accepting it.  OUCH!

We have gone through LOTS of oils and lotions trying to keep his skin moisturized and healing.  Vitamin E oil, aloe vera gel, tea tree oil, intensive cracked skin healer, aveeno intensive therapy, and finally, zimrub!  Finally, something I thought was "healthy" enough, and he actually agreed to wear because it was less 'greasy'.

I went against the doctors on this one, and pretty much stomped my foot with Albert.  But in the end, it paid off.  The radiation oncologist could not believe how good his skin looked and was surprised by the end that his skin was surprisingly in good shape.  Apparently at his level of treatment, the intensity of the beam usually creates a much more severe burn.  (Yay, vitamins and natural oils!)

It still looks pretty painful to me.  Eventually, it will all peel, like this:

The staff at the proton center was very sweet and helpful! 

Some of the smiling faces that got us through belonged to:
And one lady tech, whose name is escaping him! (She was transferred to main at the very end)

You guys rock!

Thank you! From the bottom of our hearts!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Chemo, Round 3!

Wow!  Time has flown by!

Bert starts week 8 in the morning.  Chemo only, for three days.  (Cycle 3 of 5).

Yep, you heard right!

Looks like the last time I blogged, we were headed to a great Easter weekend.  It was busy and fun and relaxing, and stressful!

Bert's treatments for radiation are all over!!!!  YAY!!!!

I will elaborate later this week and get everybody caught up on our crazy busy lives!

Thanks for keeping up with our journey!