|Wet Coast (Wickininish Island 2005)|
On Friday Mark met with the specialist who identified three possible cancers: Colon — possible but it doesn’t act like colon cancer; a liver cancer which has blocked the bile duct; or bile duct cancer– most probable. The later two don’t respond to treatment and given the spread to the lungs and possibly the brain (explaining his balance issues) the prognosis is very poor. The rapid onslaught of symptoms suggests weeks maybe months. All this needs to be confirmed with a biopsy which will happen early next week. At the same time the doctor will unblock the bile duct to relieve the bile and reduce the jaundice and remove some of the fluid buildup around the liver to make Mark more comfortable.
Mark is not in pain, he just feels ‘pregnant’, swollen belly, uncomfortable, fatigued and his trousers don ‘t fit.
How does one deal with a prognosis like that? … with a dinner: beef bourguignon; crusty french bread; mango with cashew salad; brownies and ice cream prepared by Thora, delivered with Jerry, and enjoyed by brother James, nephews Darby and James (Marks son), niece Adele, and my mother. Mark not having eaten anything substantial for more than a day, ate two helpings