There has been a lot of concern to understand exactly what kind of cancer Rich has. The large umbrella that it falls under can be found at the PMP Awareness Organization web site. I warn you, though, that web site is a rabbit hole of medical terms. Even the PMP web site covers pseudomyxoma peritonei, appendix cancer and other peritoneal malignancies. We're waiting around on a biopsy result that will hypothetically tell us what kind of tumor Rich has, or at least where it originated. We are guessing that it's his appendix, but we'll find out for sure.
What I'm finding, though, is that even within the patients in the PMP support group, every person is unique. The symptoms, treatment, chemotherapy requirements, quality of life, length of recovery ... everything is different. Trying to understand what Rich's cancer experience will be like based off of those others seems futile.
But in a lot of ways that's freeing. We know that Rich has something in this family of diseases. We don't know how he'll react to the chemotherapy. We don't know how the tumors will react to the chemotherapy. And comparing him to others is not really worthwhile because there is no one else exactly like him. (We've all known that for a long time, but the medical world is confirming it.)
So for now it is Rich's disease. We're going to prescribe Rich's healing treatment plan to get him out of this hospital, which involves laps and naps. Then we're going to do some homework and soul searching about Rich's desires. And we will probably then try a course of Rich's chemotherapy. After that, we'll have a Rich CT scan and compare that with some Rich tumor markers. And then we'll decide what to do next.
I have decided to live outside of the statistics. And for the moment, that gives me peace.