Sorry for the delay in updating. I know I always follow everyone's stories for many reasons...but mostly to be sure that they are okay and to better understand (at least antidotally) what options there are for different cancer situations.
I ended up having a PET/CT scan that showed an enlarged and "hot" lymph node near my trachea and right lung. This was the same lymph node that had lit up on PET scan two years ago and that was scheduled to be surgically removed at MSK when while on Keytruda, the lymph node shrunk and the SUV went back to normal levels. We felt that the Keytruda had obliterated any cancer growing in the lymph node so the surgery was cancelled.
But now two years later the same lymph node was growing and not responding to the Keytruda, my CEA was up to 11 and the SUV of the lymph node was 14.0. My results were sent to Dr. Kemeny at MSK and she felt that resection of this node was the best treatment.
On June 9th, Dr. Bernard Park, thoracic surgeon at MSIK, performed VATS on my right side and removed a large clump of lymph nodes near the metastatic node. I had a lot of scar tissue in the area after multiple radio frequency ablations on various lung mets through the years so the procedure was more complex than expected. Nevertheless, Dr. Park felt good about the results and feels that he got everything potentially cancerous out.
The new malignant lymph node is being tested for mutations and I am feeling pretty goo (other than some shortness of breath and diminished lung capacity (which is part of the normal healing process.)
As of my last Keytruda treatment on June 18th (8 days post resection) my CEA was down to 2.2).
Will the cancer return? I am praying it will not. My local oncologist said that he has seen instances where a localized metastasis remains local and when removed the patient continues to respond to Keytruda and never has a recurrence. I will hope for this outcome. But so far so good. Hopefully, this will help others see options that may potentially be available.
Cynthia (Jack & Katie's Mommy)
Mommy to Jack (8) now (18) and Katie (4) now (14)
(My Most Precious Things)
Dx 8/11 Stage IV CRC (liver mets) CEA 2,600+
9/11 Folfiri 2/12: Failed Liver Resection
5/12 HAI pump/removed primary
4/13 Liver Resection
8/13-12/15 (10) RFAs lungs
5/17: Upper Left Lobe of lung resected.
02/18: 3 new lymph mets lung
05/18: Keytruda (MSS w/Intermediate TMB): NED CEA: 66.4, 39.2, 23.8, 13, 3.5 1.8, 1.0, 2.8 3.9, 5.0, 5.6, 1.5, .8,