Jacob and I went into the appointment hoping that he would agree with Dr. Tran (the urologist that did Jacob's surgery) and tell us that "surveillance" is the option for us. Surveillance meaning quarterly CT scans, chest x-rays and blood work for a few years and then annually for probably ten years.
Dr. Savin did say that Jacob is a great candidate for surveillance....but he did warn it a lot of times turns out to be the most expensive option. CT scans are not cheap by any means and with high deductible insurance (like we have) you are paying 100% until you meet your deductible. Another downside is that with every CT scan, there is radiation exposure. Regardless, this is a great option for us.
Dr. Savin opened our eyes to the chemotherapy option. He would do one hour long session of carboplatin chemo (which is a lower dose and not nearly as toxic as cisplatin chemo which most people are familiar with). It probably wouldn't make Jacob too sick, he maybe wouldn't lose his hair, he'd probably be tired for a few days and feel back to normal within two weeks. With this option we would for sure have to do sperm banking, although the chance of it ruining Jacob's fertility is not that high, we'd still do it to be safe. This option would also still call for follow-up over the next few years....or decade, but it wouldn't be as frequent as the "surveillance" option. Of course the downside is the long term effects of the chemotherapy, and factoring in the costs of the fertility side of things (which is not covered by insurance) and the fact that he'd still probably need one CT scan a year for awhile.
Dr. Savin is not a fan of radiation therapy and said for this situation we shouldn't even really consider it.
As of today, we definitely have not made up our minds. We are both currently leaning towards the surveillance option, but we know we are going to sit down and weigh all of the pros and cons. We actually met briefly with a financial counselor at Texas Oncology and got the costs of certain procedures and plan on doing the math for each option.
We go back on March 4 to meet with Dr. Savin again and we will have a decision made by then. So although we are now left with a hard decision to make, we are glad both options seem very positive. In Dr. Savin's words, Jacob's has an excellent prognosis, whatever we decide.
|Embry and Daddy at the Oncologist|