The people at Duke were wonderful. I saw nurses, 2 doctors, a social worker and someone who went over all the insurance information with me. My blood was drawn and I was scheduled for a return visit after I complete one more cycle of Velcade and Doxil, which I started Tuesday.
Dr. Long says that I should start the process at the end of August and be finished by the end of September. They will collect more stem cells for the transplant and let the cells stay on ice at Wake Forest as a backup for later on. I won’t have to have more chemo for mobilization. We’ll use 2 types of injections for a week beforehand, then I’ll have a catheter surgically implanted for the collection and chemo/transplant a week later. There are no specific dates yet. I need to have all the usual tests to make sure I can safely get through it, which I’m sure is no problem.
My sister, Rachel, will be coming to Durham to help me through this for a couple of weeks. That’s a huge deal, because it means being away from family and running all the errands. I’ll need to be taken to the clinic each day to have drugs and transfusions as needed.
Since the procedure is outpatient, I am looking for a Reiki Master and someone to help with visualization during this time to help me get through it and possibly recover more quickly. I’m hoping they’ll be able to come to the apartment and I won’t have to go out for this.
I’m hoping that J will be able to do hers about the same time, so we can get through it together. I don’t know if many friends schedule theirs for the same time, so this might be a novelty.