Update #2 on John's Journey to Cure & Win Against Prostate Cancer with Proton Therapy
Thanks to all of your prayers and wishes We were accepted in Phase II of the Proton Therapy at UF in Jacksonville which begins this Wednesday and is the hardest part of all of the treatments. John had many tests to complete before we could get accepted to Phase II but he completed all of those and he was clear on all of them. Another success.
What they do in Phase II is get him ready for the 6 weeks of treatments to come in 2 weeks.
Thankfully this part only lasts 2 days.
Marker settings and insert the SpaceOar Hydrogel:
Temporary spacers are implanted which protects the other organs from the Proton Therapy Treatment. It is called the SpaceOAR System. The goal of this system is to avoid radiating any surrounding organs or normal tissue. SpaceOar hydrogel is a gel-like material that temporarily moves these organs away from the prostate during the Therapy. It allows your doctor to enhance radiation trmt to your prostate to better target the cancer and to protect the organs that are not cancerous from being damaged. He should be asleep during this and they have given him 10 valium (I may need a couple...lol)
They also use Gold fiducial markers into the prostate as a method of ensuring accurate target localization for the prostate during the Therapy. WOW - wonder if it is real gold. Markers are for the X-Ray detection of the position of the prostate during treatments. Since the prostate moves around a little they have to determine precisely and exactly where it is every time they shoot the beam. The table is then adjusted to align him and his prostate properly. This can take hours to get it right.
We will head home after these 3 days and wait for our insurance company to approve Phase 3. The technicians will work out his plan based on the simulations they completed during this 2 week period to make sure exact and accurate. And wait for the approval from the insurance company. (We are blessed we have BCBS and they do accept this Treatment - Medicare does also - BUT it has to be documented from the drs why he should get this instead of radiaiton or surgery - you also have to meet certain criteria which John does). Nothing is easy with Insurance companies.
We are expected to return for the final Phase 3, 2 weeks from Phase 2. He will be scheduled for 6 weeks of daily treatments of Proton Therapy....Daily for 6 weeks. Then he will be released to go home. Based on what we have researched and read, he should have little or no side effects as do those who have surgery or radiation. Which is the main reason we are doing the Proton Therapy. We have only read nothing but great things from all who have had it. They gave us a list of at least 100 names and numbers of people we could call who have had the Proton Therapy. Everything we read on line from others was nothing but good as well. Not the same for surgery or radiation. I never found one incident of anyone writing anything positive about their experiences. The 7 page study details what that could be like if you want to read it.
We have found a great Beach house to stay at for the 6 weeks - I wanted him to have the best place he could have for these 6 weeks. We could have stayed closer to the Center but being at the beach is so relaxing and therapeutic for anyone and we will certainly need that.
So please keep him in your prayers and spread your good luck, good wishes to him we are accepted by the insurance company for the Final Phase 3. I have started a Blog for him which has not been finished (his part) yet - he has to write his thoughts and what happened since December on the Blog and the step by step process we believe will help anyone. I will be blogging pictures and info while we are there this weekend and for the 6 weeks on the blog. The website is www.johnsjourneytoacure.com and is a work in progress.
You can write to him under the MUSIC Tab on the comments section if you want to - he would love that. I will be posting daily and updating progress, so check back often.
We are posting the song we used when I had cancer and played it alot during that time.
KEEP PUSHIN REO SPEEDWAGON - I found this version today with my man Rocky - I always loved him and his movies.....still do. Thanks for keeping us in your thoughts and prayers.
Our Journey thru Proton Therapy