Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Another Update

Josh took me to BAMC this morning in rush hour traffic so that I could have lab tests that took about 1 minute. My doctor called later to say my platelets are "trending down," and that tomorrow after my bone marrow biopsy I will need a transfusion. White counts are also down. We think it's due to the radiation, and may take awhile for things to start upwards again.

Meanwhile, I saw the doctor on Monday. My low blood counts and having to wait for the surgical site (Ommaya reservoir) to heal have delayed the treatment plan a bit. That is worrisome because of the aggressiveness of the mantle cell lymphoma. Dr. B believes that we can go ahead and start the Rituxan as early as next week. It won't affect the healing of the surgical site like other kinds of chemo. Once the site has healed, the other chemo can be started.

I'll be receiving chemo both systemically and intrathecally. The spinal cord is known as a "sanctuary site." There is a physical and chemical barrier which prevents toxins from reaching the spinal fluid, and that makes it difficult to treat the mantle cell which has invaded my central nervous system. That's why we are using the Ommaya reservoir; the chemo can be put directly into my spinal fluid where it will circulate through those bad cells. In addition, the chemo will be put into my chest port, to take care of cancer cells in other places in my body.

I had a PT session yesterday afternoon. It didn't seem like I did that much, but it sure made me tired. The low platelets and white cells probably account for that, though.

In addition to the bone marrow biopsy and platelet transfusion tomorrow, I have another MRI scheduled on Friday. Dr. B wants to take a good look at my lower spine again, to see what the radiation has done to the cancer cells.

Enough boring cancer stuff. Hope your week is going well!


Linda said...

I admire your positive attitude. You amaze me. You also encourage me and challenge me. I wish you well and so MANY blessings.

Anonymous said...

Dear Kalona,

Thinking of you and praying for you every day. I'm glad to get the updates, but I sure wish that you were feeling better. God bless you , dear One -- and all the family members you hold so dear. My son is doing very well. Thank you so much for the prayers and sacrifices you have made for him.

your Emmanuel friend

Sarah Oldham said...

Your positive attitude is wonderful, you know. I am keeping you in my daily prayers - not just the DM chaplet, but all of them (the Little Crown, the rosary, all of it). I think the world of you . . . your spiritual health is the most important thing so I pray that God enriches your spirit like unto His own. That Mary be by your side, raising you up. Love ya, chickie.

Jennifer L. Mulkey said...

Thinking of you today, hoping you are in good spirits. Lots of prayers for you and your Mom and family :) Sending cyber hugs too ;)

Anonymous said...

Hi Sweet Sister, I love you!