August 14, 2022
I’ve been delaying getting my teeth cleaned. Yes, I know, a healthy mouth means a healthy heart but my heart hasn’t been the number one concern. First, it was Covid and my March 2020 cleaning was cancelled. When I got the notice that it was once again safe to visit my dentist, my nausea was so awful that the thought of sitting with my mouth propped open for an hour brought on anxiety dreams. But six years of chemo caught up with my teeth and my two front uppers as well as the lowers began to chip. This was not a good look. I knew what was coming, they were going to take one look at my mouth and declare a massive overhaul. If I’m totally honest, I wasn’t sure how much longer I was going to need teeth so I’d need significant convincing for this to be a sound investment. I was ready for the “just make sure I can smile without embarrassment” discussion. Then I got my scan results from last Thursday’s PET/CT.
First line from the IMPRESSIONS section:
“Excellent treatment response with near resolution of all FDG avid malignancy. “
The tears of relief were instantaneous as Jim and I embraced each other, shocked at the turn of events and overjoyed with the reality of the findings. “Near resolution” means that there are a few spots that show a bit bright but the vast majority of the metastasis is gone or shrank significantly with virtually no activity.
I’m still pinching myself, astounded by the significance of this report. My cancer symptoms had disappeared shortly after beginning the new treatment but the scan offers validation. Yes, I am still dealing with side effects but the scales most definitely tipped towards life and I am overwhelmed with gratitude.
It’s affirmative. I’m going to need my teeth for a while longer.