I got my 2nd dose of chemo. today. I have been feeling relatively good and the side effects of the first round all disappeared over the past week. The CT scan I had done yesterday revealed that the colon was beginning to get constipated, which caused all the cramping/pain. Apparently the triple stitching he did saved me from a leak but also is causing a bit of a road block. The nurse called and told me to take one dose of Milk of Magnesia and that hopefully I would start to feel better. Initially that worked but now the cramping is has came back again-please pass the Vicodin.
The first step today was a blood test to see if my body could handle this next treatment. The drugs take a powerful toll on my body-even after two weeks. My white blood cell count was 2.9 k/cmm, the normal range is 3.8-11.0. My hemoglobin was also low-13.1, the normal range is 13.4-17.5 GM/DL. My Neutrophil, which is a further broken down element of my white blood cells, was at 46. The normal range is 50-70. My platelets were 148, the normal range is 140-450. Hopefully these numbers don’t bore too many of you. I’m sure there are a few doctors, nurses and cancer survivors who are reading this and can relate to those numbers. I was surprised that my body hadn’t bounced back as high as I thought it would, especially(other than the cramping) I have been feeling pretty good. Even though the numbers were low, I still got to have my treatment. I think there will come a time in the future where my levels will be too low and I won’t get to have a treatment. Also, it looks like I have no chance to fight of viruses with that low of a white blood cell count. Time to move inside a big bubble.
After reviewing my blood work, an oncologist reviewed my treatments, side-effects and the rest of my CT scan. From yesterdays CT scan there were no signs of cancer in my lungs (the next organ it likes to jump to) or any other part of my abdomen/pelvis. She did say that the spots on my liver had increased in size since my previous scan two months ago. She said the growth was normal as the liver tumors have been able to grow unchecked until I started chemo. two weeks ago. I can’t believe this cancer thing still thinks it stands a chance against a Finlander like me, it has no idea how much Sisu I really have. (definition=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sisu)
The doctor said that I will have an initial 6 treatments and then another CT scan and then probably another 6 treatments and a CT scan. I would guess that means I will finish up this phase in January sometime. They are still projecting this will end in a Liver surgery of some sort. The side effects of this treatment kicked in right away. I had tingling sensations/numbness in my finger tips before I left the building. Also the sensitivity to cold drinks was immediate. All of it is manageable, but my motivation to do anything other than lay in a bed is pretty low.
Here is the proverbial first day of school picture.
I love how Brenden is gently coaxing his best friend Andrew to get on the bus first. Brenden did a great job and is already working on his homework tonight(adding numbers). Jaxson didn’t mind being the oldest kid at daycare-at least for one day.
Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers. It is time for me to go laydown.