Saturday, November 14, 2015

A Transplant for the Cure - Transplant Countdown

Karen is keeping detailed medical records for the transplant.
We are only three days away from transplant. The time is going very fast. We had a good day today. I had my third and fourth Neupogen shots this morning. They were injected into my stomach but did not sting and burn as much as yesterday. I think I had the first day jitters yesterday, but today was much better. The only side-effects that I am feeling from the Neupogen are a series of headaches. My head is also congested and I have a cough, but this could be from a change in climate and environment. I have been taking Extra-Strength Tylenol for the headaches and it helps a great deal.

Karen received a breathing treatment and her second pre-transplant chemotherapy treatment this morning. She is feeling amazingly well during these treatments. The transplant is entirely outpatient so Karen will not spend any time in the hospital.

This is how Karen recently described her transplant in a Facebook post;
The stem cell process is a relatively simple one. Janette will get some shots of Neupogen to cause her morrow to release more stem cells into her blood. Then they will hook her up to an apheresis machine that will filter out her stem cells and give her back the rest of her blood. Then they will give me the stem cells though an iv and they will graft into my morrow and start killing the cancer cells. They have found it is no longer necessary to completely destroy my immune system before giving the new cells, just suppress it. Since our HLA codes and blood types are identical, I am believing and expecting this new immune system to develop successfully with no infections or rejection issues. Bless the Lord who heals all my diseases and redeems my life from destruction. Goodness and mercy will follow me through this valley right to the next mountain top. I will start 3 days of chemo today, one day off then a full body radiation followed by the infusion of the new cells. Believe with me for supernatural protection from the side effects of the chemo and radiation.
Lois Crane is standing outside the KU Cancer Clinic

Lois (our younger sister) and I had to leave the treatment room this morning while Karen received her breathing treatment. We used this time to explore the KU Cancer Clinic building. We went outside the front door and took a picture of Lois standing by the name of the clinic. We then sat down on a bench, and decided to take a selfie of the two of us with our shades on. A nice man walked by and asked us if we would like for him to take our picture. What fun!

When we returned home from the clinic, Karen wanted to take a nap. Lois and I went to an Italian restaurant and had a big pasta meal. I was feeling very energetic UNTIL I got back to the house. A full belly and an inviting bed was all I needed to take a little power nap. I dozed-off for about two hours, and felt refreshed and restored when I got up.

Sisters - Janette and Lois.
Tomorrow is Sunday. We have an appointment at the Cancer Clinic at 10:00am for Karen to get her final pre-transplant chemotherapy treatment. I will get my third set of Neupogen shots.

Before I close, I want to mention an outstanding book I read on my Kindle. The title of the book is, "My Cancer, My Faith; One Man's Battle With Cancer, and His Reliance on Faith During His Journey" by Jim Davis. I would like to end with a quote from this book;

"If you are ever feeling down, or feeling that life has taken a recent turn for the worse, just take a couple of hours sitting in the waiting area outside a chemotherapy treatment center. It won't take long for you to see that things could be a lot worse, a whole lot worse." 
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