This is a progress report. I met with my oncologist at the University of Michigan on Thursday, post-scans, and this morning with my second opinion oncologist, Dr. Paul Chapman, at Sloan. The brain MRi showed that the two tumors that were radiated in December were stable or better, though one showed signs of edema. The PET scan was clear exept for a suspected metastasis to the left buttock, small and no pain and possibly not even melanoma. Both doctors opted for a watch and wait with scans in seven weeks again and further decision reached at the time depending on progress (or regress). All in all, a very happy report!
I asked Dr. Chapman about PD-1 approval. He did not feel that will happen until 2015. He also said that the latest Sloan-Kettering Phase 3 trial would be testing PD-1 alone against IPI alone, and IPI combined with PD-1. Those accepted will have to be systemic- treatment naive. He also said that there were a number of Phase 1 and Phase 2 trials out there with different requirements where one could be sure one was getting PD-1. Not for me to pursue at this time, but maybe down the road.
I swam in a meet last Sunday, three weeks after my last IPI treatment, and felt very good. I still get bouts of the rash and the itching. Not sure what my latest blood draw has shown. The previous ones had all been normal until the fourth in the ipi sequence. That showed a drop below normal in hemocrit, hemoglobin, and testosterone. No other symptoms except come-and go-fatigue.