As many of you know, my friend and irrepressible FOSS Force writer Ken Starks has been waiting for a date with his surgeon for the last month or so. He had his surgery today and so far the news is good. I just received the good news from Ken’s friend Ed Matthews, who also posted the contents of the email he sent me in the comments section of Ken’s latest article on FOSS Force.
According to Ed:
9:00 PM. Diane called me and said the surgery went essentially as expected. I believe she said the surgery was “over” about 4:30 and that he didn’t wake up in the recovery room. He is still doing heavy medication (Diane says he’s probably chasing young cowgirls in his dreams) and she was pleased he opened his eyes for a moment when they let her in to see him.
He will be going to Intensive Care in a little while and go to a room sometime Thursday.
Ken has written several articles on his health issues here on FOSS Force, so I don’t believe I’ll be breaking any confidences by filling in those of you who don’t know the situation. Today he underwent a major but somewhat “routine” procedure (remember, we live in an age when heart/lung transplants are considered “routine”) called radical neck dissection, which involved the removal of his larynx, possibly his thyroid and any lymph nodes in the general vicinity.
Not something that any of us would want to go through.
In Ken’s words, the surgery is “a preemptive strike against a cancer we thought was in remission.” He had survived a battle with stage IV throat and neck cancer in 2012
Recovery will doubtlessly be painful. With the procedure, he will have lost his ability to speak without use of a prosthesis, which anyone who knows Ken understands won’t be an easy adjustment for him to make.
But so far, so good. He’s made it through the surgery and is resting comfortably. All we can do now is chant our mantras, say our prayers, send our healing energy or whatever it is that each individual among us knows how to do to help him heal.
I’ll keep you advised when I hear anything.