Over the past few days, news has been trickling in from Jay, Dr. Einhorn's nurse. We first heard that James's cancer diagnosis had not changed. After a review of pathology, it was determined that James had squamous cell NSCLC with no genetic mutation...which means no form of pill chemo for treatment. And then we discussed the potential use of immunotherapy drugs. (Blech, but...well...okay.)
And then...THEN...the following news this afternoon.
After review of medical records by two "Tumor Boards" (i.e., the nerdy club you get to be in as an oncologist) and two teams of geneticists, Dr. Einhorn has determined
1. James is disease free
2. James does not currently need any treatment, and
3. "Cure" is possible, meaning that it is statistically probable that James will survive 5 years or more.
We have been overjoyed to get to share this news with some of you in person/over the phone, and it has been, by far, one of the highlights of our lives to share what God has done and to laugh and cry with you as we rejoice together. Words cannot express our gratitude to you who so faithfully walked this hard road with us. God was so gracious in giving us such awesome friends who loved and supported us every step of the way.
I am sure you have questions - we do too! We will meet with Dr. Einhorn in January where we can ask all the questions we have and get insight into how best to proceed. For the near future, Dr. Einhorn plans to monitor James every 4 months via lab work and x-ray.
In the meantime, continue to pray for James's health...he is happy to report that nearly every day he feels better than the one before. He is back to walking at very nearly a normal pace, can breathe, and says that his lungs feel so much clearer. His cough is greatly reduced, he is sleeping well, and has all kinds of energy. Apparently his eyebrows will be the last great holdouts for recovery - ha! But as one of our friends said, "I'm going to keep on praying, because I want to see James FULLY RESTORED." Yes, and AMEN. Pray too that God will give us wisdom as to how we return to "regular scheduled programming" in terms of our lives. Our return to Asia will be one of the issues discussed with Dr. Einhorn.
Now go and have an awesome Christmas...with hearts a little lighter, and just a tad more joyful than you had hoped for. It's our gift to you.
--james & kristen