Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Halfway mark!

My oncologist gave me some unexpected news on Monday. I went into Dr Gregory Litton’s office and we were discussing the outline of the rest of my treatments. He said I was on cycle 4 (out of 6), and I kept thinking to myself that I was on cycle 3 and he must be mistaken. I finally got my pad of paper out so I could have him clarify what he meant. The very first day of chemo was done on March 29th. On March 30th I broke my femur and ended up taking a couple of ambulance rides; finally arriving to IMC in Murray to await surgery the next day. Then, there was the surgery on March 31st. So there wasn’t any possible way to complete the cycle I had just started on the 29th because I was recovering in the hospital and then put into rehab for 30 days. To make up the items I missed on the very tail end of my treatments may not be that beneficial either, I was told. So in actuality, since the first day of the first cycle was counted as complete, and because I have completed two other full cycles, I am at the halfway mark; Cycle 4!! I started today. Can I get a "wahoo!?!" Also, I found out that my cancer is in remission; which I didn’t realize even knowing what the pathology report said. I am being treated with chemotherapy for the potential of microscopic cancer; or what might be there. Sarcomas are high grade and fast growing. If there was even one small cancer cell left that the naked eye could not see, it could grow very quickly and be twice as hard to deal with the second time around. Or even metastasize. There were negative signs on my chest x-ray (lungs) of any tumor growth. This x-ray was done quite a few weeks ago and I guess I had figured no news was good news. The lungs would be the first place it would metastasize, so that was indeed good news. All in all, a very positive day ending with a trip to JCW’s for a hamburger and french fry with my mom.

This is how my chemo road map should have been. However, on the first cycle I only completed day 1, and will not be making up the rest on the tail end of treatment.

Cycle 1:
Day 1: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 2: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 3: neulasta shot
Day 21: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)
Day 28: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)

Cycle 2:
Day 1: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 2: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 3: neulasta shot
Day 21: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)
Day 28: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)

Cycle 3:
Day 1: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 2: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 3: neulasta shot
Day 21: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)
Day 28: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)

Cycle 4:
Day 1: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 2: adriamycin and cisplatin
Day 3: neulasta shot
Day 21: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)
Day 28: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)

Cycle 5:
Day 1: adriamycin
Day 2: adriamycin
Day 3: neulasta shot
Day 14: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)
Day 21: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)

Cycle 6:
Day 1: adriamycin
Day 2: adriamycin
Day 3: neulasta shot
Day 14: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)
Day 21: high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin)

* cycle length is 36 days approx. (unless hospitalization, other illnesses due to cancer, low blood/kidney/liver counts, holidays, scheduling, etc…)
** adriamycin and cisplatin are done as outpatient.
*** high dose methotrexate (with leucovorin) is done as inpatient, and usually requires about 4-6 days each time in the hospital.

I will likely be done with the chemotherapy treatments in December instead of sometime in the Spring of 2011, which is what I had thought. It is important to keep looking forward... forward to the end of treatment, forward to life next year, forward to the years to come... Keep looking forward.

6 comments:

Gabbitas Family said...

I had no idea you started a blog! I'm so glad to be able to read up on your feelings. You are amazing!!!

Melinda Wells said...

Yay for 1/2 way! I'm so so glad the treatments are working!

Great Investment said...

I love that you are blogging your feelings and experience, I wanted to do that while being sick with my pregnancy but I ended up not sticking with it. I am so proud of you! Keep the faith and especially keep singing those hymns. That really helped me when I was sick and couldn't get to church. Hugs for you!

Gabbitas Family said...

I didn't know you liked JCWs!!! I love that place, but it is a little expensive for a burger joint. Good to hear things are going well and hopefully this second half will all be downhill. Love ya.

Sterling

Megz said...

Look at you and your medicinal knowledge! Try saying methotrexate with leucovorin 5 times fast...
It's great to read your past posts and see what a great level headed attitude you have. And your post about the relativity of pain is so true. Gave me something to think about.
Anyhoo, glad to see your blog finally!

Sharolyn Gabbitas said...

I discovered JCW's when I worked at AuthorizeNet in American Fork. People would always go there, or talk about it. So I finally went one day. It is fantastic! Yes, I agree on the price thing.

I know, I know...I started blogging, but then didn't make it public knowledge for a while. Guess I should have sooner. :)