Monday, August 29, 2016

Roller Coaster Ride

This has been an up and down and up past 30 days. About a week after my first cycle of chemo treatments I was hospitalized for 13 days with a bad fungal pneumonia. By the time I was discharged we stayed a couple more days in the Rotary House Hotel, attached to MDA for daily monitoring and labs. I had a bone marrow aspiration on the 19th of August followed by our appointment with Dr. Kadia on Friday August 21st. The preliminary results of the bone marrow test revealed my blast count had dropped from 13% to 3% which was excellent news (3% is within the normal range). Also, my major blood counts started going up to better levels again.

By day 21 past the start of that first round of chemo my counts started improving and by day 28 my bone marrow was once again producing better blood cells. Today, day 35, my platelets were up to the normal range and my white and red cells were higher than anytime in the past 4 or 5 months.  Also today I started the second cycle of chemo treatments. This time the volume of chemo was reduced to 3 days IV and 5 days of concurrent injections. Since my counts are so much better starting this round of treatment we hope the side effects will be more tolerable and that pneumonia will not happen again.

This cycle will last a total of 5 consecutive days meaning Monday through Wednesday the IV chemo will be done out patient at MDA while the Thursday and Friday injections will not require a trip back to MDA except on Friday when we go back for more labs. So 4 of 5 days we will travel back and forth from home to MDA. Beyond this second cycle we still do not know what to expect. It is hoped I will continue and go back into full remission. My Doctor even said I am back in partial remission, now since one of my blood counts, platlets, has returned to normal, my bone marrow is normal and that the major IDH2 mutation was not present. Also the rapidly improving white and red cell counts leaves him very optimistic about my prognosis looking forward.

The roller coaster ride continues but the view is far better from on top than on the bottom.

1 comment:

  1. Robert, so glad to hear you are doing better. Missed seeing you at Janine's mother's funeral, but know you were not up for the trip. Sara mentioned something about another trial treatment process, but I wasn't sure if it was just being talked about or that it was something that seemed like the next step.
    Keeping you in our prayers. mark and nancy bailey.