Monday, March 24, 2008

Emotionally Drained

Today has been an emotionally draining day. The day started so normally and then took such a bizarre turn it's almost not believable. This morning, I took Celtic to see a veterinary specialist in Kansas City. We'd made the appointment a few weeks ago, when our regular vet decided that he didn't want to try and remove the fatty (benign) tumor in Celtic's armpit because it was so extensive. This is the same lipoma that Celtic had removed last year--it just grew back already and is larger than it was before! Since we loved the surgeon who did Hope's surgery last year (Dr. Layton at VSEC), we made an appointment for a consultation with her to see what she would recommend with regard to Celtic's growth.

So here's where the story gets almost unbelievable. When I left for KC this morning I decided that it would be fun to take Hope along for a visit, so that Dr. Layton could see her and see how amazingly Hope's very delicate area (her tumor was right smack in her "privates") had healed. We got to Overland Park and got out of the car, and as I'm trying to make Hope potty before going inside, I'm thinking about how Dr. Layton was our hero for saving Hope's life and how the doctor will be so pleased to see Hope and how wonderful her slightly deformed posterior looks when I glance down at her backside--only to have my jaw literally drop open. There was a dime-sized, blistery-looking bump on Hope's rear end, just a couple of inches away from where her first one had been. My heart immediately sank because it looked exactly like her previous mast cell tumor.

About the only good news here is that we were already at the veterinary hospital and Dr. Layton was absolutely wonderful. After examining Celtic and his lump she examined Hope, took a needle aspirate of her growth, and walked straight back to the microscope to examine the sample. A few minutes later, she came back with the grim news that it was, in fact, another cancerous tumor. With such a small sample she was unable to tell the stage of tumor, but she still recommended that we remove it immediately without trying the chemotherapy that failed to shrink last year's lesion. She is such an amazingly kind and caring doctor, she did all of this without even charging us for Hope's visit.

Needless to say, Celtic's possible surgery has been put on the back burner for now. Instead, on Wednesday morning we'll take our sweet girl back to Overland Park where she'll first undergo some testing to see if there's any cancer that has spread internally. Those tests will be followed by another delicate surgery, in an area of her backside where Dr. Layton knows she can't get the desired large margins around the edges of the tumor. We're just hoping and praying that Dr. Layton can perform another miracle for Hope.


cw said...

I'm very nervous, but have a lot of confidence in Dr. Layton. We certainly appreciate everyone's prayers for Hope.

Erin said...

It breaks my heart that you all have to go through this all over again. I will pray for all of you and especially Hope. Obviously someone was looking out for you to make you think to take Hope along for a visit.