The Struggle Has Ended

Greg Hewlett passed away on January 17th after nearly eight years of battling colon cancer. While we grieve his loss, we are comforted to know that he is with his Lord.

If you would like to leave your thoughts on Greg, please see this thread.

If you would like to make a charitable donation in Greg's honor, please see this thread.

Thursday, November 6, 2003

CEA 3.4

It has been a while, but I'm still here pushing forward! I finished off my fourth round of chemo and this week began my fifth. I decided to try things a little differently this round by driving down to Houston and coming right back after the intravenous chemo was given. This takes advantage of the small window of opportunity of feeling well due to the the steroids I receive with chemo. This plan allows me to work and rest from home rather than from Houston. I decided to give Christine a break and Mark drove me down. She is continuing to suffer from serious migraines.

My check-up appointment was relatively uneventful. The good news was that my CEA level (a marker for the cancer activity) continues to go down. It is now at a level of 3.4, which is a "normal-person" level. This indicates the chemo is still working. I have been having some more serious side-effects (diarrhea) this past round, but not quite at the level of having to stop chemo for a break. Because I am on the edge with this symptom, Dr. Hoff was inclined to reduce my chemo dosage. I resisted and talked him into continuing at the full dosage. After all, the symptoms have been kept in relative check. He replied that if it gets any worse, I will have to abort the round and spend time in the hopsital to recover. But he agreed to continue at full dosage and see how it goes. I don't think he would have given in to my persuasion if he thought it was a foolish decision. I'm in day three and have not had any problems yet, so my gamble is paying off so far.

After one more round, we will do the range of diagnositc tests to see how the liver tumor is doing. That will be mid-December. Dr. Hoff doesn't want to do radioactive testing any more frequently than that because the iodine contrast used in the liver CT scan is bad for my kidneys. So the next solid news will not be until that time. As you may recall, the plan is to continue chemo until the tumor size no longer shrinks or until my body cannot handle the side effects. Then, if it is small enough, surgery will be performed to remove it.

For those inclined to pray, please petition for continued tumor shrinkage and overall healing, no serious side effects, and Christine's battle with migraines. Thanks.


Judy Wu said...

Go, Greg! You're a trooper. I pray that you will continue to receive the benefits of your treatment with minimal associated side effects. Please tell Christine that I send my love and also my prayers for relief of her pain.

Dan & Syd Christen said...

We are so amazed at your strength. God "DOES" give you the ability to endure! And it helps when you are seeing results. Praise God!!!
We are praying so for Christine's Migraines to subside. They can overpower all desire to do anything.
Love You Bunches and hug your Mama and Daddy for us.
Dan and Syd

andrew said...

Yes, I am inclined to pray... and I will.

John Ciavola said...

Greg and Christine,
You will continue to be in our prayers. We are so thankful for the updates.

Josh Geiger said...

Saludos, Greg! Thanks for the update. We will be praying for you and Christine. I admire you courage with the chemo, telling the doctor to give you the full dose. May the Lord continue to grant you courage and strength! Joshua

Corvino Family said...

Yes, we are inclined to pray... and we will not let go until there is a blessing.

Carl said...

We are so inclined.
Your prayers are our prayers and are God's Provision before they are mouthed.

max said...

Dude, you need to either update the site more or get someone else to do it, because you had me worried there.
Also I will be in Dallas for Thanksgiving. Let me know where to come find you.