Tuesday, May 18, 2010

A Mini-Road Trip

Well, Matt had an appointment with the surgeon yesterday in Seattle. It definitely didn't go as we had planned, but what's new?!?! =) We thought we would just drive up for the appointment and then come right home (it was at 1:45). We left around 8:30 so that we would have plenty of time to find our destination, get parking, stop to go to the bathroom, get coffee, etc.

We got to the hospital about a half hour early, so we took a little walk around town. Virginia Mason is located in the "Capital Hill" area of downtown Seattle and it is a very beautiful area, especially on a clear day! We walked a few blocks and found a little park, the nearest Starbucks, Seattle Public Library, and signs for the Seattle Aquarium! I tried not to get too excited because I know that Matt will see little to nothing outside of white walls. =) But, I was excited that there will be places to take Madi on walks.

Here's a couple pictures from the park we walked to.

This is the kind of things you find in parks in the middle of big cities... ?!?!

Anyway, the appointment went well. We really like Dr. Porter and feel like he has a lot of experience and is very confident. He seemed very thorough and started off by getting the story from the beginning of Matt's "onset". After about an hour, Dr. Porter had uploaded the CAT scan disc and taken a look at it along with one of his radiologists. Unfortunately, it's not a very good scan and it didn't give him all the information he needs. He asked if we had any plans over the next few days and then proceeded to tell us that he wanted us to stay and have Matt get a CAT Scan at VM so that he could ensure it was going to be a good scan that would give him the information he needs.

A couple things he needs to know more information on are:

- Is the tumor interrupting the vena cava or just moving it? If it is, he will need a Vascular surgeon on hand to put a stint in this major artery.

- Is the tube that goes from Matt's right kidney to his bladder going to have be taken out? (I don't remember what it's called) because that is where a lot of the tumor is located... If so, does the kidney have to come out too or just be moved to a new spot (weird, I know)...

These were the main "fuzzy" areas based on the CAT Scan that Dr. Porter looked at. He did say that because the tumor comes out by the spinal cord he will have a neursurgeon do the surgery with him as well.

Unfortunately we did not leave the appointment knowing when surgery will be, which was our biggest disappointment, but we do feel confident that Dr. Porter is getting all the information he needs so that he will be as prepared as possible before surgery.

Dr. Porter said that surgery will be an all-day event and because he will need other surgeons he could not schedule a surgery time until he has coordinated with them. He also said that if Matt doesn't lose any major organs he should be in the hospital for about 7 days before he is released. Dr. Porter recommends that we stay in Seattle for at least a couple days before we drive home, once released.

Our appointment turned into a three hour appointment. Matt went straight over to have blood drawn and a chest x-ray and then we scheduled a CAT Scan for first thing Wednesday morning. Thankfully we have wonderful family in Seattle (Well, Renton) who graciously let us stay at their house with just a moments notice. My mom brought Madi up late Tuesday night and stayed over too because she was planning on attending some sort of graduation ceremony of my sister's at Fort Lewis the next day. It really all worked out, well, just not like we had imagined!
We are waiting once again... this time Dr. Porter is going to read the new CAT scan and then give us a call regarding our next appointment date and surgery! He would like to schedule it within the next 6 weeks, but does not think it will be more than 3 weeks out.

Thanks for all of your continued prayers! We love you all so much!


  1. Phew! We'll keep praying for you guys! Sounds like you've got a great doctor though!

  2. You are in my thoughts and prayers.. I pray everything goes according to plan and a very speedy recovery!!!! Matt, your family is beautiful!!!! You have done very well!!!