Month: August 2007

Day +2

This is my first day of simply recovering, after having had stem cells infused for 2 days.  I felt pretty queasy this morning, so I spent a while in the clinic with some IV Zofran and Ativan.  I’m not sure what caused this to happen, since I felt fine on the way to the clinic.  I kind of just wish I could stay home now.  I think schlepping into the clinic causes problems.  There’s nothing that can be done about that though.

I had a good laugh, which really did help me to feel better for a bit.  Now I think I’ll rest for a while.  Then I have to make myself exercise!  They say it can help.

This is day +1

Even though I’m still having more stem cells infused today, it’s still called day +1.  Yesterday was uncomfortable.  I believe it was  a reaction to the preservative, DMSO.  I felt a great deal of pressure and discomfort in my chest while the stem cells were being infused.  Luckily, there are fewer to do today.

I’m keeping up on the ativan and compazine to try to avoid any nausea.  So far, I’ve felt a little queasy, but nothing major.  I’ve been told that after  day 5, I should be past that.

My iPod broke last night, so Todd went and got another one for me.  I have some things to transfer over.

I just saw Dr. Long, who is a great doctor.  I highly recommend him if you’re in the market for a stem cell transplant.

Day 0

This is day 0, the day on which I’ll receive some of my stem cells. I’ll get more tomorrow, too.

They’re getting ready to do it soon, it appears.

Something I had (maybe chemo?) gave me terrible indigestion last night and this morning. I also had a bad headache. I didn’t sleep very well, so I hope to catch a nap while I’m here.

This is a picture of one of the syringes filled with my stem cells. I had such an unpleasant experience with the re-infusion that I hate to even look at this!

Stem Cells

Done deed

There’s no turning back now. I had my high dose melphalan today. If they just sent me home right now, I’d probably die from an infection in a matter of days. The chemo is myeloablative.  It kills the bone marrow. My stem cells will be infused over the next 2 days. I don’t fully understand why it’s going to take 2 days, but I’ll find out tomorrow. I’ll have my own special room at the clinic while this is being done. It should be more comfortable than sitting out in the open in a chair. It’s very quiet here, and I’m sensing an opportunity to take nap.

Housing A-ok

We got the apartment and are settled in, sort of.  Everything’s not put away yet, but soon will be.  We were thinking out loud about how great a place this would be to live, IF we were 25 years old.  Nothing’s better than home.  This is a 2 BR/2BA apartment with a kitchen, living room, dining room and washer & dryer.  I think this is going to be much better than doing the SCT inpatient.

Melphalan day

Today I should be getting a 20 minute infusion of melphalan, preceded by 1/2 hour of chewing ice chips.  I’ll have ice during and after as well, as a means of trying to avoid mouth sores from the chemo.  I’m not sure when we’ll start.  I’m supposed to start at 9:00, which is only a few minutes away.

A half hour to go

In 30 minutes I’ll be leaving to head up to Duke to start the SCT process.  Today I’ll see the doc and have an EKG and some tests.  Then I’ll go check in to the housing that’s been arranged for me.  I sure wish I lived close enough to do this at home. I’ll write more as soon as I can.

My skin hates the dressing

Skin irritated from tape

This is a picture of what my skin looks like around the catheter that was placed almost two weeks ago. It’s from the adhesive pulling skin off when I change the dressing. Now I’m using a gauze dressing with paper tape. I hope it heals soon. I really do like the clear dressings better, since there’s less worry about getting it wet or allowing bacteria in. This catheter is placed under my right collarbone. There’s also a tube in my neck that I can feel. If you click on the picture, you can see a bigger version. If things like that make you at all queasy, then please don’t click on it. :)

Hickman double lumen catheter, Neostar triple lumen catheter