I should be a taking a final right now. Oh well. Who wants to see some pictures of a handsome man's brain? Okay, here you go:
"But how do you know this brain belongs to a handsome man?" You may ask, to which I would respond, "because it belongs to this handsome man":
And anyway, why should we spend time debating whether he is handsome or not (he is) when there are brain pictures to discuss at hand. Moving on...
[Begin lecture on Brain 101]
These are flare images of Greg's brain. First, some logistics: the portion of the brain that looks like it's missing in the top left hand corner is indeed missing. This was mostly removed at the age of 12 when he had the first tumor, with a small additional amount removed during this last surgery. It is actually the right front lobe of the brain that is gone. For orientation sake, imagine Greg is laying down and you are looking straight up through his chin and into his brain - this is the angle of the image.
Now that I have your attention class, I can further explain. The picture on the left was taken just after his surgery in November and as you can see, contains significantly more enhanced areas which represent dangerous tumor matter (the white-ish areas that look like Africa one one side of the brain and a stingray on the other). These areas were the targets for the chemotherapy and radiation treatments he has endured for the past two months. The size of those areas alone is kind of scary, no? But fear not young student! The image on the right is from last Friday, and (hurray!) shows very little enhanced area remaining. So basically what I'm saying is that the treatments WORKED.
[End totally accurate and highly intelligent* lecture]
I can't tell you how relieved we were to meet with the doctors and find out about this positive progression. We're not yet done - Greg will be on chemotherapy for another year - but the outlook is really good for the future.
On another note, it's just nice to know that the pain and suffering wasn't in vain. Not just the pain of radiation beams and poison running through the body, but even the logistical pain of driving between Provo and Salt Lake daily. The upside? 4400 tax deductible travel miles! Gotta think on the bright side of things...
So that's the update. And here's another picture for good measure. It's not of a brain, just a handsome man.
*Spell check just informed me that I spelled "intelligent" wrong. Ironic, dontcha think?