The picture left is the machine I have named Freda. The whole mechanism rotates 360 degrees aound me. Below is the spaghetti mask that holds me within a millimeter of where I am supposed to be. Also is shown the operator console where she does the final alignment using Xrays before the machine starts zapping me.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
We got the radiologist to give us a little extra time.The process turned out to be quite interesting. It all starts when he gets a 3D MRI. At that point he has to come up with a strategy to paint the sides of the cavity where the tumor was with radiation, changing beam shapes, directions, and intensity. He starts this with a computer program that in his case turned out to be using 10 different Xray beams, and then the computer program simulates it and gives him feed back on how well it works. He does this several times to make sure he gets the results he is looking for. He showed us some of the plots. When he is satisfied with that he goes through a test run with the machine. This is done with some kind of a water vessel that contains sensors of the areas he is trying to hit. If that proves satisfactory they start the therapy. I was impressed how much planning work was in the process. I had accused him of being in slow motion, I was wrong.
The plan is for 33 sessions.
Monday, September 14, 2009
I really didn't want to spend much on this blog, but it is the best place to answer the continual questions of ' how are you doing.".
I saw the surgeon this AM. He is pleased the way thing are moving. He says the protcol of radiation and temodar is the exact right one with proven results. I mentioned radiation burns on my body, and he says that it one of the meds causing that. I mentioned slight paralysis on the left side of my face, he says that it is weakness, not paralysis.
Tomorrow I get some time with the Radiologist.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
I had said that I wouldn't get too much on this blog. I hereby change my mind, just once.
I am now into radiation and chemo and I am not sure yet what to look forward to. The chemo for me is to take a pill at night and I am not sure what to expect beyond that. I have noticed some things from the radiation like tightening up the skin on my face. My razor doesn't work as well and the barber noticcd it too. The nurse told me to use only baby shampoo and to use an aloe type of skin softener Also to use Ivory soap.
My energy level is very low, but everybody tells me to expect that. The Dr. tells me that will reverse in a few weeks.
Part of my problem is paralysis on the left side of my face. ONe disturbing result is trying to brush my teeth. I cant get all the food out. I can't feel it and find hours later that there are still bits of food there. The dentist says to use a rotary tooth brush and I think that helps.
The radiation sessions are nothings. They take11 minutes and I am out of there.
So that is a summary. Do not expect much more from me for a while.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Today I met the radioloist. He had done a lot of work. He had a stack of 3D MRIs that showed the different beam strategies he was going to use. These were all run through computer simulation to make sure they were accurate and had no bad side effects. He said I may see some improvement in the paralysis in my face. He also may reduce some of the meds as things progress. He wants the chemo to be in my system for each radiation treatment. The drug store screwed it up and didn't have it ready for me today, rather tomorrow at ten.
They spent over 30 minutes lining up the machine, taking XRays to verify the alignment, etc. The operator has a ten screen console she operates during the treatment. This was a very precision process. They put a mask on me with sensors that the machine picks up to ensure alignment. Regular daily treatments will go a lot faster.
I will go in every weekday at 3:30 PM excluding labor day.