Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Chemo Day # 11 Happy Dance!

We had two appointments this week.
Happy dance, doctor says Tony can eventually golf.  His back will never be 100%.  Damage is permanent.  High impact activities are really not allowed. (doctor says no sky diving)   He will have to determine that as he goes.  Even a fall, can break his bones.  He's considered high risk for fractures.
Keep reading-it gets better.

So yesterday we were at Princess Margaret Hospital to further discuss the next step with a leading doctor and her co-ordinator, Andrew.
She basically said that around end of March, we begin to schedule his bone marrow harvesting procedure.
(collecting non cancerous blood cells) Once collected, they will freeze it for future use.  They collect enough for two transplants. Shortly after this, we wait for a bed to open up and the bone marrow transplant will take place.  He will be in hospital for 2-3 weeks.  Then, recovery at home, for 1-5 months.

She was asking for an IGG number (M-protein, myeloma number), but we didn't know what it was.  Never shared with us.  Humber River is getting this information every 4 weeks.  On November 6th, 2012 that number was 58.  Should be zero.  Two weeks ago it was 28.  This means that chemo is working.  Tony is responding.  All good news.

Today, we had our regular chemo day at Humber River.  She shared with us about this IGG number.  I asked about the stage number and with this question we got great news!!!!!
Tony is diagnosed at Stage 3 of 3 for Multiple Myeloma.  But, with MM, stages don't mean anything.  Treatment is the same for all stages.
She also shared with us that his multiple myeloma is not the genetic type, which means is not an aggressive type!!!
WOOHOO!!!!!!!   High five everyone!   HAPPY DANCE 

More good news.  Sunday evening was the last time he took his morphine for his back.  So far, it's almost midnight on Tuesday evening and he's feeling fine.  The longest period without morphine so far.  Hopefully his hand shakes will subside....let's see how his day goes tomorrow.

So, together, let's just keep him in our thoughts, prayers and send positive energy.


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Chemo Treatment #10

Today, our drive to Humber River Hospital took us 2 1/2 hours!  Roads were bad.
Long Long DRIVE!  On a good day, it takes us about 40 minutes.
Tony's hemoglobin levels have been the same for a while now. We discussed with the doctor the possibility of a prescription for that needle....you know, the one I have to give :(
She will let us know next week after she sees his blood levels.
Good news is that the Steroids will be once a week now!  WOOHOO....so this evening, they have kicked in!  Get ready work related people------he will be high energy on Wednesday!  Probably won't be sleeping tonight.  Both of us :(
We ran into a friend we haven't seen in probably 20 years at the hospital today.  Great catching up and passing the time today.
This Monday, we will be at Princess Margaret Hospital to further discuss the bone marrow transplant.  I should pull out those brochures again and refresh my memory on it all.  This way, if we have any questions, we can be better prepared for it.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Chemo Treatment #9

I'm late blogging again!!!!

On the 15th Tony had his chemo treatment.
The regular doctor is back from her vacation.  YAY!  She is wonderful.
It all went well that day.  We were prepared this time for the two hour IV drip for bone strengthening.
She has changed up the steroid treatment for our third month.
Instead of 4 days on and 4 days off, Tony will take one dosage (10 pills) on Tuesdays only.
Well, he was charged up for Tuesday, Wednesday and then crashed on Thursday.....
The rest of the week and weekend was good.
His cold and cough is basically gone, which is great!
We need to stay healthy.
Tomorrow is another treatment.
We now have 2 of the 5 months behind us.......

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Chemo Treatment #8

What a beautiful warm winter day today!!!!!

The doctor listened to Tony's lungs and didn't hear anything unusual.   Other than his coughing, he is fine today.  To be on the safe side and in case Tony gets worse, she put him on antibiotics for 7 days and allowed the chemo treatment to go ahead today.  She doesn't want to miss any treatments.
Hemoglobin was at 119.  Still getting better.  
Tony is exhausted.  We got home around 4:30 and he slept most of the time.  And, I'm sure he'll have no problem sleeping tonight either.  No steroids till Tuesday now.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Flu or Cold?

Well, I'm still sick as a dog.  Stuffy nose, sore throat & cough.  This is my last day of antibiotics and not seeing a huge relief.....As for Tony, he is getting worse tonight.  The oncology department gave the green light for antibiotics for him.  But, he has to see Family doctor and he wasn't in.  We will get the prescription first thing in the morning.  I'm worried......he really needs to slow down!  When he's on those steroids, he is a freight train.  Nothing can stop him!!!!!  He doesn't listen to me to take it slow. He just wants to knock off his "to do" list----yesterday!   HIGH ENERGY!!!! Today is his first day off steroids so he's crashing hard tonight at home.  Can barely stay awake.  Looks very exhausted.
I have a heavy heart tonight....... :(

PS: Chemo day is Wednesday this week as our regular doctor is on vacation.  I hope they don't postpone his treatment this week because of his health.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Family Doctor

Family doctor checked out Tony and he is pretty much ok.  Thinks it's a virus.  No antibiotics because he doesn't want to interfere with the the chemo treatments.  So, we'll call the clinic on Friday.  Actually, we shall see how Tony feels in the morning.  Good thing is that there's no fever.
However, ME, Mary....well, I'm coughing and have a sore throat and wheezing.....I get bronchitis every year.  So, after examining me, he decided to put me on antibiotics and puffers and I got a flu shot.  Since I don't have a fever, he can administer the flu shot......Now, I've been struggling about this flu shot thing for years.  This is only my second one in my entire life.
Tony was reminded once again to stay away from people with colds, etc. especially, little ones.  Young adult ages (our boys) have a GREAT immune system so they can easily carry stuff and not show any symptoms.  Go figure!  So, one had a flu shot and the other is getting his next week.
So, how do I stay away from my husband?

Chemo Treatment #7

Even though last week the chemo department was closed, it still counted as week  #6.
Yesterday was #7
His doctor is on holidays and we saw another one.  She was great.  Tony's hemoglobin has reached 114.  Slowly getting there! His back is ok.  His pain management is ok. No further fractures.  WHEW!
Hopefully, this means his bones are strengthening.
He did wake up with a cough and the doctor listened to his lungs but he sounded good, therefore, she went ahead with the chemo treatment.
This morning, however, Tony is wheezing and coughing.  No fever.  We are seeing the family doctor today at 3:30pm.
I'll keep you posted.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everyone!!!!  Our evening was spent with friends.  Tony was going through his 4 days off steroids and was having a sleepy day.  Major crash time.  We still had fun.
With the beginning of this new year, we count our blessings and treasure every day, one day at a time.  We definitely have a battle ahead of us, but staying positive keeps us going.  Family and friends are important to us now, more than ever. Writing this blog is helpful.  We are grateful to all the support out there and wish everyone a healthy 2013!

2012 Catching Up

Sorry followers.  We've been so busy with Christmas and holiday stuff.
On Friday, December 21 Tony was seen at Sunnybrook Hospital for his back and pain with a specialist.
The doctor discussed with us radiation treatment for his spine.  Because of his fracture and multiple lesions, radiation treatment would be an option.  Better than surgery.  That was encouraging news.  But they don't recommend it during chemo therapy.  Tony feels he can manage the pain for a couple of months.  It has been getting better.  She also suggested he stop his morning morphine dosage and take only the evening one to see how he feels.  So far, it's working and lasting the full 24 hours.
The chemo office was closed the entire week during Christmas.  He was instructed to continue with meds and would be missing only one needle.
On Boxing Day we left for Chicago by car for 5 days.  What a great city.  Clean, exciting, nice metropolis and great family time with the boys.  Myself and Robert did have a cough and a bit of a runny nose.  Tony felt great the entire time.  He even survived the long drive.