Brian’s Blog was created for all of his friends, family, fans, and community members who are cheering him on in his fight against leukemia. Brian graduated from HHS in May of this year. Many people know Brian due to his leadership, sportsmanship, and outstanding athletic achievements including three state championships in wrestling, a state football championship, state discus champion 2011 and varsity track and soccer teams. He had received a call to serve a full-time mission to Uruguay and was planning to start his mission at the end of the month. After completing his mission to Uruguay, Brian planned to play football at SUU where he has already received a full-ride scholarship. Brian was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) on Tuesday October 2nd. That very day he was taken to Salt Lake City for intensive inpatient care. He has been receiving chemotherapy, blood transfusions, and other treatments. We hope and pray that Brian will recover with the help of competent medical care. Doctors say that there is an 80% chance that Brian’s cancer will respond favorably to treatment. Thank you so much for your support. We will keep you updated regularly on Brian’s progress.
Update: On January 14, 2014, Brian passed away after a 15 1/2 month battle with leukemia. He was in remission following the first series of chemotherapy treatments for only 3 months, in spite of earlier optimism. Another harder hitting chemotherapy began in June with the intention of following with a bone marrow transplant but instead, alternative treatments in Colorado Springs and later Atlanta were chosen. Those also were unsuccessful, too little too late. In November he underwent yet more chemotherapy in Denver. The leukemia did not respond. Brian returned home to Southern Utah friends and family on December 12, 2013. Leukemia took his mortal life, but it can't touch his spirit.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
Thank you all for your many prayers. The white cells have begun to recover, but they have not changed. They are largely leukemia cells. The doctors here have no more help. Transplants require a very minimal percentage of leukemia cells. Thus, we are trying to get Brian back to Dixie Medical where he can receive life sustaining transfusions while he can survive. That isn't to say we have given up hope, but it is the next step in this journey. We hope that Brian will be able to see those he loves and has missed very soon. He understands what is happening, and has not given up the fight nor the hope. We pray for a miracle, not knowing of course the will of our Creator, who has not left us alone, but has comforted and guided us through this most challenging experience.
Thursday, December 5, 2013
It will be 3 weeks since the last chemo, and longer than that since Brian has had healthy white blood cells. Fungus has attacked his body, and while meds have gotten it under control, some traces still remain...in his lung. That is what today's CT scan revealed. Ugly news. However, we are hopeful that the white blood cells will come back and put up a fight. Earlier this week they were up to .6 for a day, but dropped clear down a couple days later to .1 . Today was .3, which is better. They say when the marrow wakes up there are fluctuations and then it takes off. Totally ready for take off. Tonight he has to go in for another MRI, to check up on the tongue, throat and neck area to make sure nothing has grown there either. I hope there are no surprises reports from them, the lung report today was not expected and so not looking for any more disturbing news. Regardless, Brian is going to pull through this trial, and he is doing better today. He recovered this week from an allergic reaction which swelled up his tongue, then started swelling the cheeks, ran him fevers just about round the clock, and gave him a royal rash from head to toe, which still remains, but is fading as it should. He has met his caloric intake the last 3 days now, and even though it is a liquid diet, just the fact that he has avoided TPN (IV nutrition) is a great accomplishment, which he did manage to do even when it drove him to tears for the pain. He didn't want to do the damage to his body that he had last time with the TPN, which took quite a while to recover from. When you don't eat normally, the internal organs that usually are busy processing food and nutrients tend to die out, shrivel. He still takes extra pain meds prior to drinking his supplements but it isn't hurting to swallow as bad as it was, and he actually enjoyed a banana blended in his smoothie this morning. When he sees an ad for pizza on TV, he groans a little and says he wants to eat a whole pizza!
He has recovered nicely from the lung surgery, also, by the way. That is good.
So, if we all can pray for those white cells to come back surely things will be looking up soon! Thanks for checking in and for your love and prayers.