Ron Stout Cancer Combat Fund
My friend Ron just found out he has cancer which as you all know sucks and is expensive which makes it suck even more. It would be nice if cancer would only affect horrible people. If that were the case Ron and his wife Stacey would be unaffected. It is amazing how you can just be living life, and then something like this happens and yanks the rug out from under you.
Honestly though, money is one of the biggest concerns. They do have really good insurance, but they also have a lot of medical expenses already, and now they are looking at a lot more medical bills, prescription costs, and fuel to Pittsburgh for who knows how many sessions, additionally any day that Stacey wants to be with Ron in his time of need is a day she doesn't get paid.
For now we are estimating conservatively that they will need $5k to get through this if all goes well. That number could grow much larger very quickly under the wrong circumstances. Let's pray that it doesn't.
Any donation you make will be a huge help and greatly appreciated!
Here is a word from Ron from his Facebook:
"After trying to think of several different ways to start this post, I realized that there is no easy way to tell the world that you have cancer. Maybe that is dramatic. I don't know. Some of you know that I have been having some problems, and I recently had my back scanned. A cyst appeared on the scan, and that lead to CT. The CT showed a cyst and a mass about the size of a ping pong ball on the top half of the back of my left kidney. All signs point to Renal Cell Carcinoma. I saw my local urologist today, and they have already scheduled me for what looks like a pre-op appointment in Pittsburgh the day after Memorial Day. There are some points that come up frequently with the few people who know about this.
• Why wasn't this caught sooner? I have a liver disease, but all scans for that occur on the right side, never the left. The indicator on the blood tests that give an early warning for cancer is CBC. NASH causes my CBC to always be abnormal. In short, my "Check Engine" light is always on.
• Maybe it isn't cancer? Unlikely. Kidney cancer is one of the easiest cancers to diagnose. A simple CT is all that is necessary. If the words "SUSPICION OF RENAL CELL CARCINOMA" appears on the report, then there is only a 5% chance that it is incorrect.
• What is the treatment from here? Surgery. I am scheduled with a surgeon who specializes in saving as much renal tissue as possible. If he can, he will remove the top part of my kidney. If it doesn't remain contained, more cutting will need to be done. Chemotherapy and radiation are not very effective for RCC.
• What is the biggest concern? If it escapes my kidney. Even if it stays in the kidney, a radical nephrectomy (removal of whole kidney) would work). RCC is the fastest cancer a human can get so it can infect other organs quickly. Those organs would be removed too. Those include some or all of the bladder, the adrenal gland, lymph nodes, or other tissues. Lungs, bones, or the lymphatic system is worst case scenario.
• What are the odds? Let's keep it small. Let's say stays where it is and it can be removed. My five year outlook is 90% survival. Until I talk to the surgeon (or you want to be depressed), as my mom says, let's not borrow trouble.
I will keep everyone updated. If you have questions, feel free to ask. I have done nothing but research this down to the genetic marker level, but that's what I do when I get nervous. I'm not going to lie, it's pretty rough around here. Things like this make you reexamine your life. I can tell you this: don't waste any time. You never know how much you have.
Thanks for giving this a read.
As for my condition, things are looking good! I have kind of been waiting to hear from my surgeon, and did that recently. My incision is healing great, and I am cleared for just about everything except lifting more that 10 pounds.
The big news was that there was no lymphovascular Invasion, which I guess means that the cancer stayed encapsulated and didn't break open any blood vessels allowing the cancer cells to escape. So since all the cells stayed in one spot, my 5 year outlook went from 19% to 1-2% from this cancer. It was the best news we could have got.
As for the future: I get scanned at 1 year, 3 years, 5 years, and every 5 years for the rest of my life. I am now in a high risk category for cancer, may spontaneously develop cancer in another organ that isn't connected to this one. The same thing happened to my grandfather, and the genetic cause runs on that side of the family. Since I am so young, I have a lot of 5 year checks to pass, that is a lot of chances to fail one, which is scary.
So here is the bottom line: this cancer is defeated. We remain vigilant for new cancers. We don't have the bill for the operation yet, but it's bound to be substantial. I still have a bone scan scheduled because my spinal surgeon wants to rule out cancer in my spine before considering surgery there. Everyone's assistance has been great, and as always, updates and donations can be found at
As you can see in the diagram, there was a lot of reconstruction that went into saving my kidney. I have never actually felt my kidneys before. They have never hurt, never had stone or an infection. From what I understand, that is pretty unusual at my age, so add another to the weird pile.
I started taking my medication as directed to stave off swelling and pain. 2 nights ago I got less than 4 hours for a 24 hour run so it hasn't been the easiest transition. Stacey Stout stayed home with me yesterday to help me get up to go to the restroom and things like that since our couch sits so far down. Luckily, I am feeling better today, because she just had to get back to work. I have to admit to being worried about tomorrow since it will be the first day with me and the dogs at home.
You guys really helped out with the
Those funds have helped Stacey take time off work to do some (very!) heavy lifting! Our followup is on the 7th I think and we find out how far things have come along. If you can, I really appreciate those donations. She gets me through these times, and the only way to do that is to get the bills paid.
Thanks everybody. If anybody has any questions about my surgery, or just any question, really. I don't care, just ask in the comments. I am full of answers, covered in curls, and packing a little less cancer…
(I couldn't upload the picture of Ron since I'm traveling and out of high speed data. Sorry -John)
All IVs disconnected, but the locks are still attached. I'm getting up and walking more (three times so far today!), and that might have something to do with the fact that I found out I can just ask for coffee and I will get it.
Bandages came off today. Reports of a 2 inch incision was a bit off the mark. It's at least six, maybe longer. I didn't bring a ruler or anything. That staples all look good though. And they FINALLY got me a binder for my stomach to hold all this stuff in place when I move around.
I am still REALLY. groggy, and have yet to void my bladder in my own. They are pretty concerned about that. It's probably the one thing that would delay my release.
And yes, my hair gets more epic by the day. Don't worry, it won't reach maximum size. When Stacey brushes out my hair, I get a 20 inch Afro.
Thanks to everyone wishing me me well. I am checking Facebook regularly, even if I am not posting. Thanks to everyone who has donated to
It has helped allow Stacey Stout to be here with me 24 hours a day and help understand and remember instructions given when it turned out out I was too woozy to remember. I don't know what I would do without her. She is my island in all this turbulence. With her here, I feel like I can concentrate on getting better, and not just getting out of here, and every body that donated or helped out in other ways like Megan Adkins on the day of surgery has allowed that to happen. I can't thank you all enough. In fact there are so many people to thank, I will have to make a separate post. You guys know who you are.
Sorry for the long post, but hey, I have things to say!