We didn’t expect that on December 19, 2017 when Todd went in for a very long-awaited neck surgery that he would experience heart failure on the surgeon’s table, be successfully resuscitated after three attempts, have a pacemaker inserted, or that doctors would ultimately discover a cause for his heart failure – a rare endocrine cancer – during a subsequent CT scan.
Enduring constant and often excruciating pain, Todd has continued to work hard for many years to provide for his family. The neck surgery was going to be the beginning of a long but ultimately hopeful road to recovery, with additional surgery on his spine planned for the summer of 2018. However, due to the heart damage sustained by the endocrine cancer that has spread to the liver, and an unknown risk to continue on with plans to repair his neck, full recovery has become a much more complicated situation.
At this point, doctors have crafted a detailed plan for Todd’s recovery. The first steps will be to repair the neck and spine in two separate surgeries, both of which will be performed by a neurosurgeon and a team who specializes in the behavior of neuro-endocrine tumors in order to avoid the heart failure that happened during the previous surgery. A proposed third surgery would remove a tumor in the GI tract that could potentially cause life-threatening complications. Careful monitoring of Todd’s heart is a crucial component of this treatment plan because the cancer is known to behave erratically and could possibly lead to an open heart surgery. The final recommended steps of the treatment plan entail four rounds of targeted chemotherapy treatments for the endocrine tumors.
How to Help
We are asking our family and friends to consider rallying with us during this wilderness season. We are unsure of the outcome of the surgeries, how the future looks, or Todd’s earning capacity during this time. Even with the assistance of our health plan, the remaining amount of funds to be covered by us for these surgeries and treatments is enormous.
This has been, and continues to be a humbling and vulnerable experience for us both. It is challenging to place Todd’s health issues on this more public forum. We also understand that pride does not have a place here and we are unable to stand alone. We are ready for the battle but remember that ultimately, the battle is the Lord’s!
Our hope is that we will all be able to shore each other up, be it through provision, prayer, or notes of encouragement. They are all relevant and they all matter as we navigate this difficult path. Whatever level of support you can offer, we are deeply grateful to you!
Thank you for your love and consideration!