Today we received the NHS's report on Supatra's latest MRI scan and it is good news! There has been no significant change since the last scan on 1 Feb 12, no new lesions and less enhancement of the main tumour body again as compared to the 1 Feb 12 scan. So, no mention of shrinkage but overall a very welcome report considering we were thinking that the tumour might have started growing again. The Burzynski clinic is still awaiting the arrival of the scan CD for their own interpretation which I hope we will get next week. I still have not got a written report from the clinic for the last MRI scan and have asked them to do their own reports using the scan CDs I am sending them as interpretations of MRI scans can vary greatly from doctor to doctor. So it is important that the same doctor provides his/her analysis on each of the scans so there is a uniform assessment process; or at least as uniform as it can be. I still have not got around to figuring out how to paste the PDF copies into this blog but for the time being I have created images of them and then pasted the last two reports below.
We are very happy with the status quo and the fact that the tumour seems to be getting less active as the decreasing enhancement indicates. For those who may not know how this works I will try to explain. During an MRI scan the patients body part is scanned first using no drugs to enhance the afflicted area. Then they pause the test to inject a contrast drug into the patient that will enhance blood vessels. Tumours rely and create a lot of blood vessels within the tumour mass to help continue to feed the tumour growth (rapid cell division). Therefore if the contrast shows a lot of enhancement on the imagery then it means the tumour has many active blood vessels indicating an active tumour. If the enhancements are less so or decrease then it can only mean less activity = less growth or no growth of the tumour mass. However, what the MRIs do not do is necessarily pick up all parts of the tumour as is usually the case with DIPGs because DIPGs are DIFFUSE tumours that wrap themselves around the nerves that make up the glioma and also tend to grow little fingers or tentacles from the main mass. It is these 'fingers' that can be very difficult to pick up with the MRI and so we think these are definitely still there as Supatra's left face continues to be affected by the cancer. We hope that if Supatra's tumour can remain stable for the next 4-6 months or more that it just might start to breakdown from the lack of an ability to grow further or that Supatra's other supplementation will have a chance to beef up her immune system enough that it will start eating away at the tumour cells themselves. You just never know! Let's hope, let's pray, keep our fingers and toes crossed that this will be the case for Supatra and please keep fundraising so that she can maintain this treatment. Thank you all!