Thursday, June 28, 2012

Breaking the news...

Hello Everyone,

Please accept my apologies for a group email, I have been on the phone all day and feel this is a better way to reach the masses of amazing friends and family. First let me say that we feel so blessed, we have an amazing support team and feel each and every one of you with us.  Zack has asked that we keep this information within our immediate friends. He doesn't want to be labeled, and we want him to have as normal a time as possible. We also want to keep upbeat and are asking positive words and thoughts. We KNOW this is a HUGE part of his healing.

Zack had a large mass on his left leg.  He had surgery to remove it on June 6th and it has been determined based on a pathology report to be Ewing Sarcoma.  This is considered an unusual form of cancer which has been known to be aggressive. There are few cases around the world (leave it to us to come up with something different...), however there is currently a protocol in Asheville for this specific sarcoma.

Our current plan:  We received the news regarding the pathology report today, had blood work done and tomorrow we go for an  an MRI on the area where the mass was removed to ensure that it was completely removed and no residuals are there.  IF everything was removed (the surgeon is convinced he got it all), we proceed to Asheville for a pet scan (no we are not having our pets scanned...) this will determine if there are any other masses. IF they find another mass or some other areas then another surgery will be the first step. (surgery alone will not cure the sarcoma, it requires both surgery and chemotherapy and in some rare cases radiation.)
the success rate is high for a cure and we are confident that this is the way to go. Based on reports once this is cured it doesn't return. Woo hoo!!! The next step will be to start the protocol of chemotherapy in Asheville. There is a clinical trial (like they have in the "big" teaching hospitals all over the US. This is what they call "protocol" ( I'm learning a whole new language).  This trial ( Novel Combination Chemotherapy for Localized Ewing Sarcoma) is being studied in the US, Canada and Australia. They are following the same protocol as a pediatric oncologist with added meds to the "cocktail". the trial is the first COG trial available through National Cancer Institute Support Unit.

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