Hepatocellular Carcinoma or HCC is not a common form of cancer. But, it sure can show up if you lived with Hepatitis C as long as I did. Dang it! The end stage cirrhosis did a number on my liver and my recent ultrasound led to a CT scan to take a closer look at the mass they found. Yep. My alpha fetoprotein (AFP blood lab that can support a cancer diagnosis) was high and the tumor board at Nazhi Zudhi sent me to an oncologist today. My blog about Hepatitis and Cirrhosis now includes Hepatocellular Cancer.
Since the diagnosis on July 14, my MELD score has moved from 6 to 22. I am in the process of being listed for a transplant at Nazhi Zuhdi. First they want to try and use a TACE procedure also known as Transcatheter Arterial Chemoembolization. To sum this little part up: I am taking sick leave from teaching and will be going with my doctor’s orders this fall.
Now that you know the facts, let’s get down to the nitty gritty. You know that’s where I live. Researching and readying myself for this has consumed me. There have been several different parts to it. They seem to layer upon one another, but the focus is the same. How can I survive liver cancer and a potential transplant?
I have rolled up my sleeves and put together a framework of what I think it will take. For those of you who have treated for Hepatitis C, you know exactly what I mean. For those who have survived cancer or a transplant, yeah... I know for sure that you get it. I have heard from several of you privately and in the forums. I sure do appreciate all of your love and prayer.
My reading has been across several different formats from medical journals to cancer recovery books, podcasts, audio, and videos. I am ALL over this one. You will be hearing about it all dear friends in the battle. It reminds me a lot of when I was first diagnosed with Hepatitis C in 2010. More conflicting information on the internet. Lots of scary pictures and statistics. I know that somewhere in there is my truth and I aim to find it! I start right where I have had success before.
In future blogs, I will be breaking down all aspects of HCC or hepatocellular cancer, MELD scores, UNOS, and how it relates to Hepatitis C and cirrhosis. If you logged on to read about Hepatitis C and treatment options, side effects, or questions related to cirrhosis - please read all that you can. By getting treatment and taking good care of my decompensated liver, I have lived 2 years past a death sentence. I believe that every thought leading to positive action can add years to YOUR life too. Let’s keep fighting the fight against Hepatitis C and the liver disease that can come. Treat as soon as you can, eat right, and live every moment to the fullest.
Click here to read the full blog entry on IHelpC.com.