Home » My Health Updates » Not the news we had hoped for

Not the news we had hoped for

Posted by on June 13, 2013 in My Health Updates - 43 Comments

The news wasn’t good today.  I wish I could make this post funny or add a cute little anecdote, but I don’t have one.  The scans showed that the tumors in Chris’s lungs are growing – which explains why he’s been struggling a bit more these last few weeks.

We’re working on next steps, but as you all know, we’ve exhausted all the conventional treatments and even knocked out most of the unconventional options as well.  We’ll try to keep you posted as we wrestle with these decisions.

Today is our daughter Kate’s birthday.  She turns nine.  Chris and I are so proud of her.  Tomorrow, we’ll put aside the worries and just celebrate Kate – surrounded by cake, a piñata and a whole gaggle of nine year olds.

  • Mary P

    My prayers are with you. I participate in a Relay For Life event tomorrow night. I will dedicate a luminaria for Chris’s continued fight.

  • Kenny

    Dena, Thanks for updating us. I think about you and Chris every day, and go back and reread the blogs often. You two have been a huge help to me and Valerie over the past nine months. So many people have benefited from the Kidney Cancer Chronicles, the insights, the knowledge, the attitude. Thank you so much. There are a lot of people in your corner, hoping, and praying for you both.

  • Anonymous

    Damn it, Dena, this news makes me sick! I think about you guys every day. I pray for Chris and you and your family. Part of me knows how lucky I am that I’m in a pretty good place right now. The other part knows in a very real way that things could swing on a dime and I’d be right where y’all are. Give that man a hug. Hug your girls and enjoy the birthday celebration tomorrow. Then strap it back on and get back down in the trench and rejoin the battle. I hurt for you and I join you in the supreme hope that this monster will leave you be, let Chris heal and allow you to get your lives back.

    If I could do more, I’d be getting about it. All I can offer is my love and concern.

  • Rick Welsh

    Chris and Dena, I’m sorry to hear your latest news. Still another mountain to climb, another problem to solve. You will be in my prayers. Happy Birthday to Kate.
    Rick Welsh

  • Susan Lowney

    My heart aches for your family. Will keep sending healing energy. WIsh I had a magic bullet; cancer sucks.

  • Kathy Farrell

    My heart goes out to you and the whole family along with a crap load of prayers. I keep dong the one day at a time, realizing that you never know how fast it all can change. Know that there are many of us out here pulling for Chris and you. Warm thoughts and lots of hugs.

  • Patricia Alana

    Dena, Thanks for updating us. I think about you and Chris every day, and go back and reread the blogs often. You two have been a huge help to me . I have benefited from the Kidney Cancer Chronicles, the insights, the knowledge, the attitude. Thank you so much. There are a lot of people in your corner, hoping, and praying for you both. Still another mountain to climb! Another problem to solve. This gives me cold chills all over my body! I love you folks Dena, Chris, Katie, Josie. XOXOXOXO

  • Bill W

    Damn, I feel for you and your family. I wish you all the strength to separate this bad news for the weekend birthday party. You are all in my prayers.

  • Rhonda

    Praying for you all in your continued fight. Happy Birthday Kate.

  • Rebecca

    Praying for you all. I understand the frustration and the fear. Praying for hope and of course a cure to be found!

    Much love,

  • Dawn V

    Adding our love, thoughts and prayers…

  • Liz

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  • Phil

    Dena, if there is anything we can do, please ask.
    I cannot say more than I love you guys and I hardly know you. Please just hold each other tight.

  • Kerri

    I’ve been thinking about you guys. I’m sorry the news today isn’t better, but I’ll keep you in my prayers. Happy birthday to Kate!

  • Melissa

    More prayers coming your way. And much love –

  • Tim Griffin

    We love yall and are praying for you. TG

  • Shaun

    You guys are always in my thoughts and prayers. Much love.

  • Anonymous

    Chris and Dena, our prayers are with you. We think of you often and have prayers at my church every week, plus mine. Words fail. Love to your whole family.

  • Nick Puleo

    Very sorry to hear Chris is not doing well. Words cannot express how both of you have inspired and educated other RCC patients. I’m 2.5 years out from nephrectomy, with very limited and slow-growing (so far) lung mets. I failed IL-2. Two are gone recently from VATS surgery, and the other 2 about to be targeted by SBRT radiation with goal of local control to buy time. I’ve never felt sick from RCC, trying to keep that status as long as possible. Truly, I never would have pushed and prodded the doctors for more explanation of all options without inspiration from your excellent updates.

  • Wendy

    I think about you and your family often, and will continue sending every good thought I can muster your way. If I can do anything at all, I will – please let me know. You have touched my life like no one else. xoxoxo, Wendy

  • Pat Yovich

    Happy Birthday to Kate! And we are and continuing prayers for you all!

  • Ellen Howe

    Sending prayers and love to your family. You are all very strong.

  • Sue Hensley

    Happy Birthday to Kate! We are praying for you daily.

  • Pamela Jean

    I hate not seeing humor in your post. Cancer is certainly a roller coaster ride of emotions and this news is like having your heart free fall into your stomach. I still get chills when I think of the day the news came about my brother’s terminal kidney cancer diagnosis. He went thru IL2 unsuccessfully and that just about killed him, the fact that Chris has been able to fight for so long is just amazing.

  • Nancy Black

    Not the news that any of us wanted to hear. You remain in our prayers daily.

  • Aunt Barb and Uncle Art

    Know that all of you are in our prayers….

  • Tricia Maciel Vissers

    I haven’t been following, but I just saw your post. My husband has Renal Cell as well that has spread to his lungs. He has had a few surgeries to remove small tumors which included 2 resections in his left lung. He currently has 4 small tumors 2 in each lung. 2 of them he had Cyber Knife done just a few months ago and 1 of them it didn’t do anything, but 1 of them shrunk a little. The other 2 are not big enough (as small as a pepper flake) to do Cyber Knife. He is also on Chemo pills. Have you tried Cyber Knife yet?

    • Dena Battle

      Hi Tricia, Chris isn’t eligible for cyber knife – his tumors are too big (there is generally a 3 cm size limitation). But, I’m so glad to hear that it’s working for you – I think that keeping the tumor burden low is really crucial. Are you familiar with the site SmartPatients? It would a good resource for you and your husband. If you’d like more information, feel free to e-mail me: dena_battle@yahoo.com

  • John

    Our prayers and love are with you guys.

  • Deb M

    I hold my breath when I see a Kidney Cancer Chronicles post. Today, there are tears attached to that breath-holding. I was so sad and discouraged to read the news. I’m in awe of your research, your compassion for the rest of us who share your and Chris’s medical life. I know you are busy looking for the next best option for Chris, and I know you will find it. It’s out there. I am so thankful you have taken us on this journey with you. I can’t tell you how much it has meant to me and how much it has benefited my husband. I wish I could help you as much as you’ve helped me. Have a wonderful birthday celebration. I’m keeping you in my prayers.

  • Kelly Chard

    My heart is heavy . . . you, Chris and the girls are always in my prayers. Continue to be strong and know that I am here for you if you need me. Happy Birthday to beautiful Kate!!!!

  • Ellen

    Praying Chris…. Keep up the good fight like we know you will in what ever way that means! You are an inspiration to so many! May God bless you and your family always~

  • Minnie

    Dear Dena, your honesty and courage is beyond belief. May God be with you and your family. Have a wonderful celebration with your daughter and hopefully it is a little island of respite from your everyday stuff.

    Much love


  • Tom schranck

    I hope Kate has a beautiful birthday with her loving parents and that the joyful noise and laughter that only nine year old girls can make will overflow in your hearts for days to come

    Love and prayers

    Tom Schranck

  • luanne

    Hope today is a much better day. Our hearts are heavy but still very optimistic. We’re with you all the way. Thank you for being the amazing family that you are.

  • Mary P

    Thinking of you tonight Battle family!

    Mary Prazma

  • Ann Carpenter

    Dearest Dena, Chris and beautiful girls:

    I haven’t signed in a while, but I do check when I see an update. My heart breaks for what you all are going through. I know what it is like. As Chris is aware, my Papa (dad) fought the same brave fight against the same ugly cancer that Chris has. It was the hardest 13 months for our family. He won his battle by gaining entrance into Heaven. I am broken hearted reading your latest news. I pray that you can enjoy your sweet daughters birthday, father’s day, and whatever celebrations may lie ahead as Chris continues his amazing fight. Dena, I wish I could just hug you, hug you all, and comfort you. You must be the proudest woman to have such an amazing husband and such beautiful daughters. I understand your fear, as my mom and I lived the same fear. It seems to be sleepless nights and spending every second as a family. You seem like you do that already. I pray that every moment possible is a precious one. My heart also breaks for your two beautiful daughters. I am 27, so for me, it was “natural” yet “un natural” for me to go through my Papa’s fight and final rest. For you all, I just can’t imagine, how you prepare those sweet daughters, and such. I wish there was something I could say/do to comfort you, I know support helps and love helps, but at the same time, I know that nothing truly truly comforts when this is happening. My prayers and deepest love is with your entire family.

    my dad’s site is http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jimcarpenter

    and Dena, feel free to email me at any time for support via internet: ann.carpenter23@gmail.com

    Much love,


    Ann Carpenter

  • Maryalice Haest

    I have no words. You guys are on my heart and on my mind. I wish I could do SOMETHING. I hope Kate had a wonderful time at her birthday party.

    Wishing you a Happy Father’s Day Chris.

    Love and hugs to all.


  • MoMo

    New to your blog. Have you guys tried sutent WITH gemzar? Showing some success with my husband – mrcc w/ sarcomatoid. Nothing else worked…even for a bit.

    • Dena

      Momo – thanks for the suggestion! We’ve talked about using gemzar in combination. We’re doing some testing this week that we hope will give us some ideas of different drugs to try and Gemzar might well be one of them. All the best to you and your husband – we pray that you have continued success!

  • Vivian

    Dena and Chris – we love you both and pray for you every night. It was FANTASTIC to see you and the girls at the Coast (of all places)! Alec later asked who you guys were and I realized I hadn’t introduced him…I’m sorry! When I told him that was Mr. Chris he said “Oh! We pray for him!” Yes, buddy we do…Mr. Chris, his family and his doctors. May our prayers lift you up…and may you find more options!

  • Gina Megay

    So sorry to hear this news, and hope that you uncover more options in your research. Is Compassionate Use of Tivo an option?

  • Cheryl Razzo Stepina

    Chris and Dena…I am 8 months out after losing my husband, Dale to MRCC/Sarcomatoid. As usual, you both inspire me that the Battle Battle is worth fighting….each and every day. I think of you both very often. You have so many people, who do not know you, love you for what you are both standing up for, which is basically, more open human trials to find the right cure for each person. It is all that matters to the warriors who are fighting cancer, and the people who adore them. We all understand the protocols and such, but a little common sense in the medical community to allow a warrior to choose last ditch measures for cure, would be so refreshing!!! Happy Birthday to your little girl. My big girl just turned Sweet 16 on June 11. I threw her a huge party…our kids need a mental health break sometimes, and a party fits the bill! xoxo

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