Monday, September 29, 2008

Wet the Night

Saturday night turned out to be a wet, but fun affair. The whole weekend was rainy, so we were not sure if the Light the Night walk would go on. I later received an email saying that the walk was happening rain or shine. Saturday afternoon were filled with terrible downpours and I was concerned. It cleared up about 2 hours before the walk, however.

I was very proud of my team. They came out in full force despite the weather. We had about 45 walkers at the event. I found it amusing that Bill Koconis, who is the executive director of the RI chapter of the LLS, said over the microphone that "Cancer does not stop when its raining." That was a good point.

Unfortunately, just as we were getting ready to start the walk, the rain picked up again. It was damp. By the end, almost everyone was completely soaked. My socks needed to be rung out.

Despite all the complications and weather, it was a great event and fundraiser. I was so thrilled and honored to have all of these people there to support me, my family, and the society. People were extremely generous with their donations and it appeared as though our team may have raised the most money again this year. I should know a total fairly soon. Thank you to all of you who supported my efforts.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

A New Doctor

Yesterday my wife and I returned to Dana-Farber for the first time since the spring. It was probably the most crowded I had ever seen the waiting room. There were also many signs up talking about the crowds and wait time. I was thinking about how sad a statement it was that so many people needed cancer treatment. As much as I dislike being there, I know it is an important part of my treatment.

This was an interesting visit. I had learned about a month ago that my primary oncologist, who I had been working with for several years, was leaving the hospital to work for a drug company. I was being assigned to Dr. Richard Stone who is the head of the adult leukemia program at Dana-Farber. Despite a long wait to see him, he was a very nice guy and we had numerous connections both through myself and my wife's family. I liked his bedside manner and I am fairly particular about this since I teach this class at Brown Medical School.

I received my results from a PCR test I had back in August. My level was again at .002% suggesting molecular remission. This was the same number I has earlier in the summer and is quite low. I was happy to maintain this great level of response. I was even happier to learn that Dr. Stone did not think bone marrow biopsies were all that important for me, especially given my results. My plan is to offset my visits with Dr. Druker and Dr. Stone so that I am seen every 3 months. Interestingly, Dr. Druker and Dr. Stone did their fellowships together. Overall, it was a successful trip.

Adding to the overall theme of cancer week, this weekend is the Light the Night Event and a lot of people are walking. I am worried because it is supposed to rain, but what can you do. This has been an interesting fundraising year. It has been harder to raise money with the state of the economy. Despite this, we are already close to $15,000. I am always humbled by the responses of people who donate to such a worthy charity. It is hard to put into thank you notes what those donations mean to me and my family.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Light the Night Update

The annual Light the Night Event is quickly approaching. Team Gershon has already raised close to $10,000 and we hope to raise quite a bit more. For those interested in walking, fundraising, or donating, please feel free to visit my Light the Night Page.

The walk is scheduled for Saturday night, September 27th. It is an extremely fun and family friendly event. Please join me, my family, and friends as we try to raise as much money as possible for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.