Updates

ROUND 3

Today is another big day! I took Evan to UW around 930 to meet up with Reichie, check in and get settled into his room. I helped unpack his suitcase, make his bed (with his own blankets lol), and put some things away. The awesome nurse went over regular admit information with him and informed Ev that they were going to do an Xray of his chest as well as blood work as they always do before they start the chemo! This is to make sure the PICC line is still in the correct spot and that his blood counts are getting higher in order to keep fighting cancer! I had to leave to go to school but Evan texted me that his ANC came up to .73.. 🙂 definitely still low, which is expected. However, progress is all that matters! And he didn’t mention anything about the PICC line, so I am assuming that all was good placement still with that!
This round of chemo we requested to try and start chemo earlier in the day opposed to late at night. Last round they would start at like 9pm and it wouldn’t be complete for the day until 3am! He hated it for many reasons but interrupting his sleep was the main problem. So they were understanding and he was able to start around 4pm today which was good to hear and I am assuming around 9pm tonight he will be complete with day 1!
That is all for today!! While Ev is working hard at beating cancer, I will be at clinical the next few days and I am bummed that I can’t be there! But I know hes already doing awesome and hes got this! Glad his parents can be there with him too!!

Rollie, Pumpkin & I are cheering for you! Love you EV!
xoxo #evanstrong

January 21

Yesterday was Evans appointment with the doctor and he was glad that we already knew the good news! He assured us that everything is going in the right direction and he is happy with the progress and how Evan has been feeling!
We went over the results again to make sure we were on the same page… 221,000 seemed really high for a tumor marker however, he shared with us that at one point it was even HIGHER!!! The 221,000 value was his HCG level when he first went to his doctor. When we checked into UW a week later it was over 460,000! Just in a week, it increased that much! Unbelievable right?? So the chemo is working even better than we thought!!
Since chemo kills the good and bad cells in your body, the ANC level (the good cells that fight off infection) that we talked about before, will always shoot way down after chemo. Even though the blood work right after his last round indicated that his ANC level was back up around 3.34, it is now 0.23 which is really low. The reason we didn’t see this drop until now is because the chemo takes some time to work in his system. That is why the 2 weeks in between each session is so important, so his body can build itself up before the next round.
These next couple days before he returns to the hospital are going to be, like they always are, “super chill,” like Ev would say! He is physically and mentally preparing for Wednesday and hes ready to continue his fight! He has been eating pretty good if you ask me! Whatever sounds good to him is what hes having, even if that means Spaghetti Factory, MSM, pagliacci’s pizza, teriyaki, bread, cheese, blue Gatorade, blackberries, pomegranates and raspberries (washed a million times), snicker doodles, salad (washed a million times again even if it says pre-washed haha), lemonade, pretzel sticks, cheddar ruffles, Chinese, the list goes on!! Which means hes eating alot YAY!!
I will do my best to update you all on Wednesday 🙂 Hope everyone is staying healthy!! Remember to use sanitizer every where you go lol sanitizer is our lives!!

Also we got some more AWESOME items donated for the auction!! Cannot wait! Shout out to everyone that’s helping make it happen and especially my mom!! Literally couldn’t do it without her! xoxo

#evanstrong

OH and IF I calculated right the last day of Evan’s chemo is February 20th!!!!!! GO EV!

January 17th

Today Evan had his appointment for a dressing change on his PICC line and the nurse said it was looking good, as usual! As the appointment came to an end, I asked her if there way ANY WAY she could look-up his tumor marker results that we really weren’t suppose to find out about until Friday but I couldn’t resist:)
She indicated that his HCG tumor marker was 221,059 when he was first diagnosed and now its 734!!!! That was such good news! I can’t explain the goose bumps I got when she told us! Evan was in shock but SO relieved. He has been so strong through this whole roller coaster and it was good to have results show that the chemo is working.
To somewhat explain what I know: this is basically one of the main ways to indicate “germ cell tumors” are present in the body. Normally in men and non-pregnant woman, this valuable is undetectable (aka is “0”). It is great news that this value has dropped so much and that the chemo is responding so well! As the chemo continues, this number should keep dropping! Keep the prayers coming!!
She also indicated that his ANC level, which I talked about a little bit in a previous post, is now 3.34! During Christmas time it was 0.5, so this is also great news! (The normal range is 1.5 to 8.0). This is basically the number that indicates how well his immune system can fight off infection.
Yay for these results! Since his levels were up and so were his spirits, we celebrated by going out to eat together since we haven’t in a while!
Evan has been enjoying his time at home and has been doing really good! We have figured out that if we are proactive with his anti-nausea meds, and prevent symptoms before they actually happen, it will be a good day! He doesn’t have a huge appetite but he’s eating really well since I basically make him eat lol I also got him some pedialyte to keep electrolytes and hydration stable!
Anyways, this was a very happy post and I was super excited to share it with you all!
Please continue to keep him in your prayers, it means so much!!
#evanstrong

P.S. please remember to RSVP for the auction ASAP we have to give a solid number to the catering company! Hope to see you all there!

half way done!!!

Well… Evan is officially half way through his chemo!!!!

Sorry we haven’t been keeping everyone up to date, been super busy with school. But I will try my best to keep up with it.
He did awesome and had very minimal side effects compared to his first round. Evan is getting more comfortable without his hair…. Even my dad and Kyle joined him:) It was quite the surprise when they showed up at the hospital to surprise him!
Once again he is happy to be home and he is enjoying every minute of it! He doesn’t have the heartburn like he did last time so his appetite isn’t horrible. His nausea wasn’t the best yesterday but today was a really good day! Despite the hawks losing…… he did NOT like that one bit.
Evan had a doctors appointment recently that revealed his regular blood work was normal:). We are suppose to get tumor marker/hcg/etc results soon (this will indicate how the chemo is working then they will do scans later, per UW protocol). We are praying that these have improved!!! I will keep you posted!
This week we have a couple doctors appointments for a dressing change and another check up with the Doctor! Evan isn’t looking forward to going back on the 25th for the 3rd round of chemo but we are making the best of it and continuing to pray and be positive!

We are looking forward to the auction coming up on February 11th! We have had some pretty amazing items donated and we cannot wait! We hope to see you all there! Don’t forget to RSVP! 🙂

#EVANSTRONG #GOHAWKS

 

Round 2

Sorry that it has been a little bit since our last entry.. We have been a little busy with the new year and spending time with family

*** WARNING this is a long one***

So a little summary of our past few days.. Let’s start with Friday the 30th.. Evan had a checkup at UW with his Doctor, Dr. Schweizer. Long story short, he is happy with how things are going so far in regards to the diminished pain and no longer hacking up any blood! Hopefully that means the cancer is shrinking!! To confirm this, they will redo some blood work/scans/etc.but according to their protocol, they don’t do this right away which bugs me…lol but with cost, exposure to radiation, and being that only 1 round is complete so far, it makes sense. However, how Evans body is responding (no pain, coughing up blood) is very positive and hopeful!! The only concern the doctor had was about his absolute neutrophil count (ANC) which is a type of white blood cell in the body that helps fight infection. With chemo, this is a common. His blood work showed that his ANC was .5 and the normal range is 1.5to 8.0. So he put him on an antibiotic to help boost his immune system and as a preventative.

The doctor also gave us the biopsy results which revealed what kind of testicular cancer this actually is. We were expecting 1 but there is actually 2. He indicated this isn’t abnormal and that it is actually common to have more than one kind. Both are considered germ cell tumors. The one is called choriocarcinoma and the other is embryonal carcinoma. Both are a type of non-seminoma germ cell tumors.

American Cancer Society had some brief info on these types of cancer so I used my nursing school research skills to explain them a little cause I myself didn’t know what these crazy words mean and here’s the website: http://www.cancer.org/cancer/testicularcancer/detailedguide/testicular-cancer-what-is-testicular-can…

“Most tumors are a mix of different types (sometimes with a seminoma component as well), but this doesn’t change the general approach to treatment of most non-seminoma cancers.

Embryonal carcinoma:This type of non-seminoma is present to some degree in about 40% of testiculartumors, but pure embryonal carcinomas occur only 3% to 4% of the time. Whenseen under a microscope, these tumors can look like tissues of very earlyembryos. This type of non-seminoma tends to grow rapidly and spread outside thetesticle.

Embryonal carcinomacan increase blood levels of a tumor marker protein called alpha-fetoprotein(AFP), as well as human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG).

Choriocarcinoma: Thisis a very rare and aggressive type of testicular cancer in adults. Pure choriocarcinomais likely to spread rapidly to distant organs of the body, including the lungs,bones, and brain. More often, choriocarcinoma cells are present with othertypes of non-seminoma cells in a mixed germ cell tumor. These mixed tumors tendto have a somewhat better outlook than pure choriocarcinomas, although thepresence of choriocarcinoma is always a worrisome finding.

This type of tumorincreases blood levels of HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin)”.

ANYWAYS Friday after the appointment we made plans with Salina because she kindly offered to take some engagement photos of us! She took them right before the sun went down at Gas Works Park! It was freezing but we had fun and now have some of our favorite pictures that we can’t wait to get printed!!! Thanks again Salina:) The next day, Evans Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt and Uncle from Oregon came to visit! We spent New Year’s Eve day with them and enjoyed just being able to hang out together and watch some football! New Year’s Eve night we went to our friends Nick and Salina’s, who live right next to Lake Union, so they had the perfect roof top view to watch the fireworks at the Space Needle. They also have a fur baby named Bubba who Rollo LOVES to play with so it worked out great.

The next day, back at Evans parents, we all participated in Heather and Reichie’s Fondue lunch that they do every New Year’s Day! Evan couldn’t get enough of the cheese and bread, of course..lol When we got home that night, we had dinner at our place with the Matz family and my family!Monday was a cleaning day for me, being that I started school again on Tuesday!However, Evan watched football ALL day. Which was a win, win situation for us..haha because usually when I clean the house someone leaves a mess where I already cleaned… so not this time 😉

While being at home, Evan has been able to take Rollo out for walks regularly and eat normally! He really has been doing great while at home. He hasn’t taken any pain med and is able to sleep comfortably all nightlong!

Yesterday, Kyle brought Evan up to UW around 1230pm, where they met up with his parents and checked in for his second round of chemo! They did more blood work to check his levels again, did an X-ray to make sure his PICC line (aka where the chemo goes in) was in the correct placement, and the pharmacist took forever to make his chemo. (Chemo is so expensive that they make it every time it is needed, they never have premade bags) So his chemo did not start until like 9pm and ended at like 3am but luckily it just runs into his PICC line. So he was able to sleep and receive chemo at the same time AND Kaylee brought him a Dick’s burger and fries so we was content to say the least. He slept all night and woke up with a big appetite. He had chips, cereal, crackers, a bagel,apple juice and has subway on the way. He wasn’t happy to be back here and he has expressed that it scares him, however he is happy that the cancer is being killed!!! We all are and I keep telling him every day to stay positive and that we are going to get through this! And just like his buddy Nick said, “You have nothing to be scared of. I know it’s painful but in the end you’re going to be better.”

So day one of five is complete and he’s ready for the next!He is VERY determined to go home Monday and he’s not letting anyone forget that.. lol I hope I covered everything and I hope everything makes sense lol I usually have someone proof read my stuff but Evan is currently sleeping so excuse errors etc. Also, I may be in nursing school but I don’t know everything so hopefully my information is correct lol I have been told my knowledge will come with time… lol

Also Maddie and Garrett got back to LA safely yesterday and we miss them already! Thanks for hanging out with us! xoxo

Oh and thanks dad for driving me up here last night, you’re the best!

Don’t forget to save the date on February 11th 2017 for Evans Benefit dinner! All are welcome and the more the merrier! We will have more information to follow soon!

Evan-strong.com

Chemo Round 2

Sorry that it has been a little bit since our last entry.. We have been a little busy with the new year and spending time with family

*** WARNING this is a long one***

So a little summary of our past few days.. Let’s start with Friday the 30th.. Evan had a checkup at UW with his Doctor, Dr. Schweizer. Long story short, he is happy with how things are going so far in regards to the diminished pain and no longer hacking up any blood! Hopefully that means the cancer is shrinking!! To confirm this, they will redo some blood work/scans/etc.but according to their protocol, they don’t do this right away which bugs me…lol but with cost, exposure to radiation, and being that only 1 round is complete so far, it makes sense. However, how Evans body is responding (no pain, coughing up blood) is very positive and hopeful!! The only concern the doctor had was about his absolute neutrophil count (ANC) which is a type of white blood cell in the body that helps fight infection. With chemo, this is a common. His blood work showed that his ANC was .5 and the normal range is 1.5to 8.0. So he put him on an antibiotic to help boost his immune system and as a preventative.

The doctor also gave us the biopsy results which revealed what kind of testicular cancer this actually is. We were expecting 1 but there is actually 2. He indicated this isn’t abnormal and that it is actually common to have more than one kind. Both are considered germ cell tumors. The one is called choriocarcinoma and the other is embryonal carcinoma. Both are a type of non-seminoma germ cell tumors.

American Cancer Society had some brief info on these types of cancer so I used my nursing school research skills to explain them a little cause I myself didn’t know what these crazy words mean and here’s the website: http://www.cancer.org/cancer/testicularcancer/detailedguide/testicular-cancer-what-is-testicular-can…

“Most tumors are a mix of different types (sometimes with a seminoma component as well), but this doesn’t change the general approach to treatment of most non-seminoma cancers.

Embryonal carcinoma:This type of non-seminoma is present to some degree in about 40% of testiculartumors, but pure embryonal carcinomas occur only 3% to 4% of the time. Whenseen under a microscope, these tumors can look like tissues of very earlyembryos. This type of non-seminoma tends to grow rapidly and spread outside thetesticle.

Embryonal carcinomacan increase blood levels of a tumor marker protein called alpha-fetoprotein(AFP), as well as human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG).

Choriocarcinoma: Thisis a very rare and aggressive type of testicular cancer in adults. Pure choriocarcinomais likely to spread rapidly to distant organs of the body, including the lungs,bones, and brain. More often, choriocarcinoma cells are present with othertypes of non-seminoma cells in a mixed germ cell tumor. These mixed tumors tendto have a somewhat better outlook than pure choriocarcinomas, although thepresence of choriocarcinoma is always a worrisome finding.

This type of tumorincreases blood levels of HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin)”.

ANYWAYS Friday after the appointment we made plans with Salina because she kindly offered to take some engagement photos of us! She took them right before the sun went down at Gas Works Park! It was freezing but we had fun and now have some of our favorite pictures that we can’t wait to get printed!!! Thanks again Salina:) The next day, Evans Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt and Uncle from Oregon came to visit! We spent New Year’s Eve day with them and enjoyed just being able to hang out together and watch some football! New Year’s Eve night we went to our friends Nick and Salina’s, who live right next to Lake Union, so they had the perfect roof top view to watch the fireworks at the Space Needle. They also have a fur baby named Bubba who Rollo LOVES to play with so it worked out great.

The next day, back at Evans parents, we all participated in Heather and Reichie’s Fondue lunch that they do every New Year’s Day! Evan couldn’t get enough of the cheese and bread, of course..lol When we got home that night, we had dinner at our place with the Matz family and my family!Monday was a cleaning day for me, being that I started school again on Tuesday!However, Evan watched football ALL day. Which was a win, win situation for us..haha because usually when I clean the house someone leaves a mess where I already cleaned… so not this time 😉

While being at home, Evan has been able to take Rollo out for walks regularly and eat normally! He really has been doing great while at home. He hasn’t taken any pain med and is able to sleep comfortably all nightlong!

Yesterday, Kyle brought Evan up to UW around 1230pm, where they met up with his parents and checked in for his second round of chemo! They did more blood work to check his levels again, did an X-ray to make sure his PICC line (aka where the chemo goes in) was in the correct placement, and the pharmacist took forever to make his chemo. (Chemo is so expensive that they make it every time it is needed, they never have premade bags) So his chemo did not start until like 9pm and ended at like 3am but luckily it just runs into his PICC line. So he was able to sleep and receive chemo at the same time AND Kaylee brought him a Dick’s burger and fries so we was content to say the least. He slept all night and woke up with a big appetite. He had chips, cereal, crackers, a bagel,apple juice and has subway on the way. He wasn’t happy to be back here and he has expressed that it scares him, however he is happy that the cancer is being killed!!! We all are and I keep telling him every day to stay positive and that we are going to get through this! And just like his buddy Nick said, “You have nothing to be scared of. I know it’s painful but in the end you’re going to be better.”

So day one of five is complete and he’s ready for the next!He is VERY determined to go home Monday and he’s not letting anyone forget that.. lol I hope I covered everything and I hope everything makes sense lol I usually have someone proof read my stuff but Evan is currently sleeping so excuse errors etc. Also, I may be in nursing school but I don’t know everything so hopefully my information is correct lol I have been told my knowledge will come with time… lol

Also Maddie and Garrett got back to LA safely yesterday and we miss them already! Thanks for hanging out with us! xoxo

Oh and thanks dad for driving me up here last night, you’re the best!

Don’t forget to save the date on February 11th 2017 for Evans Benefit dinner! All are welcome and the more the merrier! We will have more information to follow soon!

Sorry for the delay..

Guess it has been a few days since we checked in. We spent Christmas Eve across the street at Grandpa Fritz & Gramma Barb’s house with all of Marissa’s family. We had a great time but one of the highlights of the evening was Evan’s marriage proposal to Marissa. We were all in on the surprise and were able to put Evan’s idea into action and somehow managed to totally surprise Marissa. Not sure how that many people pulled off the surprise but we did!!! The rest of Christmas was tons of fun getting to know Marissa’s family even more and enjoying the day!

One of Evan’s favorite gifts was a new wall mounting bracket for his tv. It pulls off the wall and tips to make his gaming station complete!! We now spend our days listening to Evan yell loudly at the tv because he can’t hear himself with his new headphones… 🙂 (thanks to kyle)
Evan continues to have more and more appetite each day but is still very tired. They say that is to be expected.
Last night we spent going to the ER to have his PICC line (tubing that the chemo is administered through) checked. We thought there might be some infection starting and according to the docs and nurses, the PICC line isn’t anything we mess around with. It goes directly to his heart so infection is taken very seriously. They changed his dressing, did a culture of the fluid, drew blood and sent him home with antibiotics. He doesn’t have a fever or any other symptoms so “if” there is infection, it was just starting so we caught it at the best time.
Today (Tuesday) we started the day with a good visit with Bonnie and Ron Chase. Was good to see them….. their prayers and love are very much appreciated!! Then we had to drive to Seattle UW clinic to have the dressing changed again….. or at least that is what we thought. They decided they didn’t want to take off the dressing because every time you expose it to the air, there is infection risk. So…… we decided to take Evan to our new favorite Asian Restaurant which is Din Tai Fung………so good…… Then we started the long journey home through the oh so great Seattle traffic.
We rounded out the night watching the movie “Sky High” which was one of his favorite movies when he was a kid…..
Well that’s it….. we are looking forward to a visit from Grammie and Grampa Diller and Aunt Heidi and Uncle Fred at the end of the week….. so until then!!