Bret started a new chemo pill called Sutent on June 1. This drug works by depriving the tumors of oxygen and blood supply. We were all very excited and hopeful when Bret started to see some positive effects of this drug. He noticed that the tumors in his wrists seem to be shrinking – causing less pain and limitation of mobility. The tumors on his skin surface seemed to liquefy into something more like blisters than tumors. Unfortunately, depriving the tumors of blood and oxygen also deprives his skin of these important nutrients causing his skin to break down. His incision, which was fairly well – healed suddenly started to break apart.
Because of the side effects from the drug, it is administered in a cycle…4 weeks on…2 weeks off… As soon as Bret went on the rest period, the side effects minimized but tumor development returned almost immediately.
Currently, Bret is in the second week of the second 4-week cycle of Sutent. It is again keeping the tumor development at bay, but his skin has become very problematic. He has a lot of open wounds that are increasingly painful. It has become very difficult if not impossible for him to get out of bed. He is caught between a rock and a hard place.
The best diversion continues to be expanding his awareness of history…current events and a wide array of subjects that come up. He is watching documentaries…movies…specials…etc. His keen interest in everything around him makes our visits wonderfully stimulating. We are constantly discovering new subjects to explore. Despite his pain and discomfort, Bret continues to keep our heads riding in a good direction.