Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Appointment With Dr Liau



The appointment with Dr Liau was AWESOME. She had reviewed all of my scans, and wasn't sure if I even had any tumor tissue. She said that before she would cut me open, she would need for me to have a Dopa PET scan. It's the scan that we've been wanting, but my doctors at UW would not authorize. It's a special scan that's used for low grade tumors. The scan would differentiate between tumor cells and scar tissue.

If the results from the scan show that the tissue in question IS tumor, she is very confident that she can remove it. She would have me do a functional MRI to verify the location of the tumor against healthy tissue. A fMRI is a typical MRI except for the fact that they ask you a bunch of questions, watching the areas that light up. Then they will stick little needles in different muscle groups and watch again for the different areas of the brain that light up. My tumor is in my language and sensory location. All in all she seemed very happy with my current situation, that I seem perfectly healthy, and the area in question seems to mostly be growing out in the tumor cavity which is great! It's better if it grows into the void as apposed to into healthy tissue.

Dr Liau thinks she could remove all the tumor (if that's what it is). I would not need to do another awake surgery, unless something comes up on the fMRI (if my speech or movement areas aren't where other peoples are). I would not need to shave my whole head, she would just shave along the original incision on either side. Sounds do-able!

The meeting happened so fast, it seemed, although she answered every single question. I'm so excited, and I literally adore Dr Liau. I can't go back to UW. I'm a convert. It's going to be tricky to visit Liau for all of our MRIs and appointments, but heck, she is LEGIT. She was on board that I should not do radiation (at this point). She scheduled the proper test, Dopa PET. She is kind, and exceedingly intelligent. She's the best oncologist I've ever met.

Now I need to go, I have an appointment with an acupuncturist. I'm very excited!!

I can't believe how different Dr Liau is compared with my other oncologists at UW. My oncologists at the UW have been pressuring me for radiation since October, and they keep telling me how much the tumor has been growing, constantly freaking me out. Dr Liau was quite the opposite. And, if it does turn out to be tumor, after reviewing the Dopa PET, Dr Liau was very confident that we could remove that tissue, and use it for the personalized vaccine.

This just reiterates to me the necessity of choosing the right doctor. Thank you for all of the support along the way, this journey just keeps getting better and better!

13 comments:

  1. "So Cal" PattiJuly 4, 2012 at 12:53 PM

    SO EXCITED TO HEAR THIS NEWS!!! I remember telling you that the answer would come when you least expected it, and it sounds like Dr. Liau is the answer! So proud of you for sticking to your principles, doing all the research and finding the perfect doctor! You are a blessing to us all Jess and I could not be any happier that it sounds like the solution has arrived! Have a Happy Fourth and look forward to your bright future!!!

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  2. What amazing news, I am so happy for you! We new have an extra special fourth to celebrate. Sending loads of love!

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  3. I'm so glad you have these new directions that hold such promise.

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  4. God Bless you & your family. What WONDERFUL !!!! news, Jessica. You all knew you had to keep going after answers & not settling for the UW docs advise. Way to go girl-you rock !!! You are an example to all of us not to settle when we know something is not right.

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  5. AWESOME! What an uplifting post :)

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  6. This is the BEST news....so excited for all the affirmations you received with this visit....finally someone that is listening and understands your perspective. You and Danny rock!!!

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  7. GREAT news! I am so glad you have found someone as positive as you!!

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  8. I swear I'm the most emotional person on the planet. From the minute I started reading this post I was in tears (still am). SO HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY for you!! This is what you've been fighting to find and you've finally got something out of all your efforts! I am so proud of you and I don't even know this Dr but I love her! :)

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  9. Such fabulous news, Jess! I'll keep thinking those good thoughts for you!
    I'll also be sure to keep Dr. Liau in mind if the unfortunate need to recommend someone arises. Living in Seattle, UW would seem the logical choice, but apparently not.
    Best wishes for you and Danny!

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  10. Jess ~ I'm so excited to hear this news, just made my day times a million and I can only imagine how this appointment made you feel! I am so happy that your perserverance has lead you to this gal and she and her team have given you such a great new direction, just like you've been striving for! Good luck and lots of love; we are cheering you on continuously.
    Petra

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  11. Such wonderful news!! I absolutely love your strength and determination and am so thrilled that you found the doctor that you have been needing who will hear you, respect you, encourage and treat you accordingly!! What every patient should have!!! Sending you, Danny and your family love and healing thoughts every day! You inspire and amaze me!
    Maleka

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  12. Wonderful news! If it does turn out to be tumor and you do need to have surgery, I found a place in CA that does endoscopic brain surgeriers (www.skullbaseinstitute.com). If you are looking at having to have yet another traditional craniotomy for this vaccine process, then it could be that they could do it endoscopically at the Skull Base Institute. Leave no stone unturned!!!

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  13. YAY!!! This is very exciting and promising news! And I'm very glad you finally found an oncologist fit! :)

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