Friday, July 19, 2024

Port Placement, Bone Marrow Biopsy, CT Scan / Ways to Help

Today was a very long, full day at the hospital for Caroline.

CT Scan Results: showed slight growth in the tumor size from her last scan 3.5 weeks ago; no other disease was identified on today's scan.

Bone Marrow Biopsy: her team is confident they got a good sample for testing; we expect results back early next week.

Port Placement: Caroline had a double-lumen power port surgically placed under her skin, on the upper right side of her body, which will be used for all upcoming treatments and blood work.

The plan is to rest and recover at home this weekend and then begin the new antibody/immunotherapy treatment Monday morning. 

We've so grateful for the outpouring of love, prayers and requests for ways to support our family as we walk this path again...we also really appreciate your patience as we worked through Caroline's treatment options. Now that we have a plan, we've been able to create a list of things that will be the most helpful to our family as we move forward.

Gift cards (digital gift cards can be emailed to 
- Walmart (groceries & gas)
- Publix (prescriptions & groceries)
- Visa
- Amazon
- UberEats
- DoorDash 

Amazon Wishlist (click here for link)

Thank you for the amazing support and continued prayers,
The Lantz Family


Thursday, July 11, 2024

Treatment Start Date

We (finally) have a plan and start date!  Caroline will begin treatment for her 2nd relapse of Neuroblastoma with the following timeline:

July 17th-21st: oral medication and shots to prep her body for treatment

July 19th: port placement, a CT scan to use as a start of treatment benchmark, and a repeat of the bone marrow biopsy that was inconclusive a couple weeks ago

July 22nd: begin a cycle of an antibody/immunotherapy that she has not yet received.  It is a VERY painful treatment, with the potential for many other side effects.  We're hoping it can be managed in clinic/outpatient with various medications.  

For now, the plan is to do a couple cycles of this new treatment and then re-scan her again in September.   The results of that scan will guide us on potential next steps in her treatment plan (more antibody, radiation, other potential therapies, etc.).

We really appreciate all the offers to help and your patience as we've been slow to respond - the past few weeks but been intense...most days ending with more questions than answers.  Our friend Michelle is working on a meal train - we will post the link on the blog for anyone who would like to help in that way. 

Thank you for all the support and prayers.  Please keep them coming!

The Lantz Family

Hoping the "lucky" double cherry that she pulled today comes through for her!

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

MIBG Scan / Update(ish)

Caroline's latest updates: 

~ the spot that appeared on Caroline's CT and PET scans last week also show up in her MIBG scan today, which confirms Neuroblastoma; all 3 of the scans picked up the single spot, which is also the same location as her 2022 relapse.

~ the Bone Marrow Biopsy sample from last week was inconclusive in determining if she has disease in her marrow, so Vanderbilt will repeat that test on 7/19.  Her bone marrow is really "beat" up after so many years of treatment, so not only is it hard to get a really good sample, it's also very painful for a few days following the procedure.

~ We've spent countless hours researching and consulting with multiple other hospitals and specialists across the country regarding potential treatments, clinical trials, etc.  We are in the process of getting a formal second opinion from Memorial Sloane Kettering in NYC and hope to hear their feedback sometime next week after they present Caroline's case to their internal Tumor Board.  

~ Caroline's case was presented to Vanderbilt's Tumor Board this afternoon and we are in continuous conversations to discuss their proposed treatment options.

Nothing about this process is quick, comforting or easy to digest...we've officially added "overwhelmed" to our shock and devastation.  We are hoping to have a plan in place by the end of next week and will post the update/plan on the blog as soon as we've decided.  In the meantime, thank you for all the prayers and offers of support.

The Lantz Family

90-minute MIBG scan laying perfectly still without sedation - she's a rockstar!!!