We received more great news from Dr. McDonald yesterday afternoon! How compassionate and caring he has been. In his busy life he remembered we were leaving for Atlanta today so he wanted to get in touch before we were leaving to give this latest great news! I was amazed that he was even able to get the MRI results back SO quickly. How loving and gracious God is once again in His timing to work that out so we could leave feeling so encouraged and positive about my condition and health and really go enjoy this beautiful, joyful celebration with Maggie and Spencer, and all the family and friends gathering from all corners of the US!!!
1st of all the MRIs showed the organs basically normal! He said the pancreas looked good! Normal!!! No sign of inflamed tissue, mass, or anything like that!!! He said the pressure I am feeling sometime is still its tender condition after coming out of the pancreatitis.
Secondly, the liver blood levels that were off the charts, so dangerously high, are also back to normal state. The 1 bilirubin level that was 10 (the norm being .05 -1.0) is now ONE!!!!!!!! Praise my Great Physician, my Gracious and Merciful Lord, and the Lover of my soul!
The only result that did show up positive is that I do carry the hereditary gene for hemochromatosis, an excessive iron build up that shows up not only in the liver, but also can be in the pancreas, heart, other organs and even in muscles and joints. When I return from the wedding I will go in to consult with him to get definition on that and just what treatment they will prescribe. Because this build up can occur in the heart he also advised for me to see a cardiologist when I return to let this doctor possibly run an ecocardiogram. Dr. McDonald was only speculating but because I had the low heart rate occur during and after the hernia surgery earlier this Summer he thought that this iron build up could have been a possible cause for that as well.
There are a few more issues he is continuing to study in the liver biopsy to give final clarity and diagnosis. In his evaluation he is now concluding that this iron build up in the liver could have also triggered the condition of the inflamed tissue in the pancreas caused by iron build up there causing the bile duct to be blocked or inflamed causing the back up in the liver, therefore the jaundice and the high bilirubin, phosphates, and other levels.
We rejoice in this diagnosis, knowing that it is something I will need to stay on top of but that it is treatable. Compared to what we thought we were looking at just 5 weeks ago, we are so blessed, so humbled by the Lord’s grace and mercy that He would so choose to heal me this way and restore me to good health.
Now I do ask that you continue pray for us as we get this treatment plan figured out, the visit with a cardiologist and finally, because this is a hereditary condition, Maggie and Mary Elizabeth will also need to be checked to see if they also carry the gene. Dr. McDonald says at their young age the condition is even more easily treated if they would have it. The condition is more common in males than females so please pray that they are not carrying the gene.
And happily we give you a Wedding Update: Oh Lord have mercy on us one more time!!! We finally left BR this morning at 10:30 loaded to the gill. Yes just picture the Beverly Hillbillies and then some! Last night we were still farming out items to some of the BR gang coming for the wedding! It got scary there for a few minutes, Kathy kept giving me that Kathy Drake eye like she was thinking, now if I bungee Ken to the top that will give me one more seat and floor board to stack in!!! But praise God I am writing this as we drive, we are only an 1 1/2 hours from Atlanta, from Maggie and Spencer!!!
We are so blessed, so thankful for this time, this celebration, that God in His perfect plan has brought them together to be united as one in Him, and that we are all in great health to enjoy every moment, every adventure, every relationship that He has ordained! You are so part of this moment with us because of your prayers for my healing, walking this journey with us, and asking Him to make a way for this holy, blessed celebration of marriage for Maggie and Spencer!
May this journey bring a blessing, May I rise on wings of faith;
And at the end of my heart's testing, with Your likeness let me wake.
Jesus, guide me through the tempest; keep my spirit staid and sure.
When the midnight meets the morning, let me love you even more.
Let the treasures of the trial form within me as I go.
And at the end of this long passage, let me leave them at Your throne."
-Jesus Draw me Ever Nearer, Keith Getty and Margaret Becker
We love you all so dearly!
Ken and Kathy