Thursday, 4 February 2010

Midway through day one

As per my previous post I was meant to go back into hospital on Tuesday.... I actually did end up going to hospital on Tuesday but by the time I had been 'processed' it was too late to receive my chemo so I went back home and came in properly yesterday.

This time I am, at least for the moment, in a shared ward. I was a bit apprehensive about this having been spoiled with a dedicated private room for the last two courses, however, it is better than I expected. The other 3 guys in the room are also young with various types of leukemia and are at various stages of treatment. They all seem amicable kind of guys!

There was a single computer to share between the ward, but a quick installation of a wireless router sorted out my internet connectivity ;-) We also each get a LCD TV hanging from our beds. That, plus being largely bed bound due to my effectively constant drip, makes the experience feel quite a lot like a very long flight in an airplane!

Started my chemos yesterday late afternoon after the treatment coordinator reemphasized all the various risks of this round; always a cheerful conversation! I started with a two hour infusion of Mylotarg, the much anticipated experimental drug then this followed with a one hour infusions of Amsacrine and Etoposide. Then I was put on a 20 hour drip of Cytarabine which ran over night and is just over half way through this morning. This will repeat (except for the Mylotarg) every day for 5 days by which point my counts will be dropping until I am neutropenic again. This should last for a week or so and then my counts will rise again and I should get leave again.

So far am feeling fine so hope I have avoided any infusion reactions - bit of a headache this morning but I suspect that's because I didn't sleep too well last night so am a bit tired. Still drinking a lot of water meaning frequent trips to the toilet which are a bit of a drama having to walk my permanently attached drip around with me.

Still feeling very positive about things; getting a negative MRD (minimal residue disease) result on round 2 has really allowed me to be optimistic that these two final rounds are more for 'safety' and just to hit anything that is left with a multitude of hardcore killing chemicals that each work in different ways to target leukemia with a full range of weapons.

Finally, a quick shout out to everybody to say thanks for your emails, texts and blog comments - sorry I haven't replied to too many emails whilst i was out on hospital, hope to get back to you over the next couple of days....

Also to all those doing the Richmond walk - thank you so much again for agreeing to do it and to everybody who has raised money for the Mylotarg I got yesterday - it is really appreciated! As I'm in hospital, I unfortunately won't be able to come to Richmond Park but will be thinking of you all and hope to see lots of photos!

Take care!


Shailesh said...

Hey Dude,

Keep on fighting you'll come out a winner.

Speak soon.


The Dude

Anonymous said...

Hi Ed,
I finally tracked down this blog (me and technology really don't mix - ask anyone at work!). Good to see that your on top of your blasts, MRDs and whatever elses (though neutropenic is my favourite word so far!).
I can't make the walk today but am certainly supporting and am chuffed to see you've got the Mylotarg already. I'll hopefully visit the rabble at the pub afterwards.
Thinking of you mate - all the very best.
Mike R

Neha Dixit said...

Hi Ed,

Heard about this from Felipe. Read through the entire story, was shocked to hear it at first. But knowing the person you are I am sure you'll come out a winner. keep that postive attitude. I know people with even more serious cancer than this and they have survived many years after a successful treatment.

My thoughts, prayers and good wishes are with you.

Take care

Russell said...

Hi Ed
This reads like you are trying to be positive/realistic with a lot of brave thrown in. Keep with my thoughts and love are with you.

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