Om Tuesday, August 21, went in for blood paintings. The first tech managed to blow two veins before I requested for each and every different tech, who had no disorders with the draw. My labs are totally unremarkable. My ALT and AST degrees, which had been creeping up prior in the 12 months, are again in the frequent kind, indicating my liver is happier. I met with Dr. Ferreira, my Kaiser oncologist. She mentioned that she became basically somewhat taken aback by the radiologists conclusion from last months PET scan that there became no small print of sickness, and Id had a entire response. She took a complicated appearance at the scan pix and detected a part of metastatic uptake in the neighborhood of my primary tumor in my neck. She showed them to me, and shes correct there's a part of uptake no longer a total lot, alternatively no longer nothing. So it feels just like the file of a CR became untimely. But Im no longer complaining. Its although a especially the contrary beautiful consequence! More than ninety% low cost in tumor size is engaging. It basically exhibits that I deserve to sustain it up taking Opdivo for your time, and proceed getting scans. We scheduled every and every different check out with and a CT for October, after the folks weekend at Carnegie Mellon.
After visiting with Dr. Ferreira, I drove as much as Baltimore for my last meeting at Johns Hopkins with Dr. Hahn underneath the aegis of the medical trial. Brad Witt, the medical trial nurse, talked about that I became the last Hopkins affected consumer in the shaped Opdivo medical trial who became although viewed to be contained in the trial. The 40 or so different genitourinary mets sufferers at Hopkins in the trial had lengthy since stopped taking the drug. Those although living have been although being accompanied, alternatively have been no longer viewed to be a component to the trial. Id all commenced the trial in early 2015, taken the drug for with connection with 2 years, then took a trip for about 18 months before resuming medical care. Hopkins will although proceed to email or call every and every 12 weeks or as a approach to be made a decision on Im no longer yet on the cart (no longer amount of pointless yet), alternatively my responsibilities to check out with Hopkins as a component to that medical trial is carried out. Im profoundly grateful to have been a component to that medical trial; to Dr. Andrea Apolo at NIH for assisting to coach for my participation; for the clinicians at Hopkins who furnished my care; and to Bristol Myers Squibb for coming up Opdivo and imparting the drug at no charge. Opdivo has kept my lifestyles no longer as quickly as, alternatively two times. It could smartly just maybe also additionally no longer paintings for all folks, alternatively its keeps to paintings for me.
Dr. Hahn and I spoke style of actually one of his former fellows, Dr. Ben Maughan, who now's with Huntsman Cancer Center in Utah. Dr. Hahn thinks that, as quickly as I officially relocate my care to Utah, my transitioning to Dr. Maughans care is a especially the contrary beautiful principle. Ive all commenced vetting the Medicaid Advantage plan associated with the Huntsman Cancer Center. SO a methods the reps haven't acquired any principle whether or not Opdivo will be a stable drug. Thats as a rule a especially the contrary sumptuous query (as much as $50,000 per 12 months, as a rule). I wont modification my care from Kaiser apart from Ive acquired that drawback worked out. I shook Dr. Hahns hand and thanked him for saving my lifestyles. Our paths are highest likely to proceed to as quickly as extra at masses of BCAN or NIH/NCI initiatives.
Today (Wednesday), I went again to Kaiser for Opdivo infusion #51. Utterly pursuits. So a methods the priority consequence of the four week infusions of nivolumab has been no great from both week infusions an occasional rash proper here and there, and a part looser bowels. Nothing to stress style of. I respect having to come back in exactly as quickly as every and every four weeks. Im flying again to Utah this night time. Chelsea is due to this of origin any day now, and Im flawlessly glad to help with the significant kiddies. And it'll also be beautiful to work out Jennifer.
Ive been investigating my wellness care possibilities in Utah. Since the federal govt considers me to be as totally and permanently disabled for this cause of my metastatic bladder highest cancers, Ive been Medicare-eligible since I became 50 years vintage. I all commenced on Medicare in January 2016, after my formal retirement from my regulation business undertaking left me with no paintings-sponsored wellness security. Beginning in January 2016, Ive been with Kaiser Permanentes Medicare Advantage plan. Ive broaden into spoiled, since its been the highest wellness care Ive obtained in my anyone lifestyles. I became already on my medical trial thru Hopkins when i joined Kaiser, and Kaiser no longer just agreed to proceed supporting my care thru Hopkins, alternatively the plan enrolled me into their added offer thru the Kaiser Family Foundation, which meant that I haven't mandatory to have any added premiums style of like deductibles or copays. I haven't mandatory to stress concerning the charge of Opdivo, or my scans, or in spite of what else.
In Utah, even if, Medicare plans do no longer look to be as generous. Ive discovered that for this cause of the declaration Opdivo is given by infusion, it's categorised as a Medicare Part B drug that will be zone to a 20% copay as much as the annual plan deductible (around $5000). Im told that non of the Utah Medicare Advantage plans conceal the Part B copay. I dont yet perceive how a lot the plans charge Medicare for my month-to-month 480mg dose of Opdivo, so I dont know the quantity of my copay. Im doing added studies, so I know my premiums up the front. Until I get that worked out proper here, Ill fly again out proper here for my remedies. Ive already purchased my tickets for September and October.