7-13-10 Tuesday

Great receiving all your cards.  Lisa’s cousin, Patricia Obletz, a talented artist, sends us lovely notes on cards with her artwork.

Status:  9.0/10.  Feeling well despite the twice-a-day chemotherapy. 

Events:  The group postponed the liver biopsy until tomorrow to let the infectious disease (ID) docs weigh in.  Here at Hopkins, as they have at the Hutchinson Center in Seattle, a group of infectious disease specialists is assigned specifically to the transplant/oncology wards.  The other ID physicians cover the general hospital consultations.  So after a history and physical by one of the ID fellows, a group of 5 came by to discuss their thoughts.  Lisa was impressed by how many people were working to get me well.  That’s the reason you come to a Hopkins – not the place you come to with a splinter.

  The ID group concurred with the current two-drug regimen while I’m getting chemotherapy and probably switching to another when this round is over.  They also said they’d like to see a liver biopsy to know what’s really going on.   It’s classic Sutton’s law (named after Willie Sutton, the infamous bank robber, who after a number of arrests was asked by a reporter why he robbed banks and replied, “Because that’s where the money is.”)

Comments:  If they’re able to get a good biopsy sample from one of the suspected fungal lesions, they‘ll be able almost immediately to stain the sample and determine what group of fungi it represents.  They’ll also send it for fungal cultures to precisely tailor the anti-fungal coverage.  So while tomorrow won’t be all that much fun, it’ll hopefully give us the answers so we can move on.




9 Responses to “”

  1. Reggie & Fred Says:

    We’re impressed and awed by how hard your working to get well, Bruce! You are truly an inspiration!! Thinking of you every day and wishing you better and better days each day!

    We love you! XXXOOO

    Reg & Fred

  2. Sheryl Stolberg Says:

    glad you are a 9.0 out of 10 today. praying for you today and every day.
    much love,
    ps: in his autobiography, willie sutton denied ever saying that – he said it was concocted by a reporter. as we journalists like to say, never let the facts get in the way of a good story. 🙂

  3. wendy Says:

    umpteen years ago my ex had a liver biopsy.. that’s when I learned about referred pain..as his shoulder and upper back hurt.. not the site of the needle insertion, just a little non doctor information

  4. HOpe Dan Says:

    So glad for a good day for you, and another tomorrow, Always with my love. Mailed you a taste good package today, & Lisa too. Guess what?

  5. Wally Schlech Says:

    Hi Bruce – are they thinking of hepatosplenic candidiasis? more likely than Aspergilllus or Mucor with that CT picture. Are you getting vori and AmphoB? If you see Dave Thomas, head of ID, say hello – a good buddy from my Uganda work.

  6. Leslie and Don Singman and Family Says:

    Hi Bruce,
    It certainly sounds like this is the best place for you to be and that “no stone is left unturned”to get you well there. We are thinking of you always and glad to hear that you seem to be tollerating this round of chemo a bit better. Hope to see you at home soon!

    Leslie and the Singman family

  7. Leslie and Don Singman and Family Says:

    type on “tolerating”, but you got the message!

  8. Henry Miller Says:


    Your writing about fungal infections reminds me of one of the “zebras” that I learned about in med school: “Alcoholic Rose Gardener’s Disease,” caused by infection with Sporotrichum schenckii. My infectious disease professor, Abe Braude, had described and named the disease a decade earlier (http://www.annals.org/content/61/6/1139.extract), so all his students knew about it!


  9. Eileen Breslin Says:

    Dear Bruce,
    Am glad you have an army of thoughtful folks problem solving on your behalf….may the rest of the week allow for some recovery and rest. Heating pads work well for the referred pain….love Eileen

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