Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me since I first shared my first Health Update last month. With so much uncertainty surrounding my bone deterioration and the cell formation in my jaw, it has meant a lot to me and made a huge difference.
I recently had another CT scan done at Mission Valley Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery (I have lost count as to how many CAT scans I have had over the past year). Good news - a dental bone graft in my jawbone won’t be necessary. It usually takes several months for the transplanted bone to be ready for a dental implant, so I am very relieved and thankful for one less procedure.
In March, I’ll be facing a second biopsy. My oral care specialist says it will be even more invasive than the first. Though it will be traumatic, he thinks that I can pick up my horn again after a couple of weeks. I am hoping he is right. When I don’t pick up my horn for one day...THAT feels traumatic to me. I’ve been playing the trumpet since I was six. It is not just a part of who I am...but who I am.
I have an angel - my dentist Dr. Roy Vegter, who noticed over a year ago that I was in pain when playing my horn; he was a regular at my weekly Wednesday Jazz Jam at Panama 66 at the San Diego Museum of Art. This led him to invite me to his office for a routine check-up; what he saw in x-rays confirmed that something was unusual. He referred me to an Endodontist, Dr. Erick Sato, who took CT scans that revealed the bone deterioration.
Since then, Dr. Vegter has been at every appointment and every related meeting with many oral care specialists. There is nothing I can ever do to thank or repay him.
Thank you again for your encouragement, kind words, prayers and positive thoughts over the past weeks. It has been overwhelming, and the amount of love and support I’m receiving from around the world has even made me emotional at times... I am very grateful to have you on my side.
PS. I will have information very soon about a big fundraiser with the San Diego Symphony in May. Funds raised will help me cover medical costs, some living expenses when I am unable to work after August while recovering from implant surgery, as well as complete two recording projects before the procedure, since the outcome of all of this remains to be seen. I hope you are able to join me and some of my closest friends in jazz for this very special evening.
For those that wish to help:
USPS: Gilbert Castellanos, PO Box 161251, San Diego CA 92176
FED EX/UPS: Gilbert Castellanos, 3288 Adams Ave #161251, San Diego CA 92176
Checks can be made out to “Gilbert Castellanos”
FACEBOOK: @GilbertCastellanos || INSTAGRAM: @castellanosjazz
#gilbertcastellanos || #keepjazzalive