Graciously Receiving

April 17, 2013 in Lymphoma by adminrcr

Flowers from Office 1

Flowers from Office 1

You might have heard a doctor or two say that sleep is important to good health. If you ever want to test the theory, try to sleep in a hospital after getting Prednisone. It’s downright impossible. Jeff is still learning that he needs to listen to his nurses and just take the sleeping pill! He got very little sleep, if any, last night. When I got to his room this morning he was gone – taken for an echocardiogram to check his heart function (results show it’s good, but we all know he has a good heart). I suppose that also serves as a baseline so they have something to which they can compare once chemo starts. Some of the drugs can affect the heart. When he got back, he ate some lunch, got his scheduled dose of oxy-contin and finally got to sleep for a while.

Jeff mused that he is a fixer, but this is something he can’t fix. He must let the doctors fix him and “graciously receive” the help and love he needs and deserves. Everyone around him is so caring. The nurses on the floor just love him. I told my good friend, Misty, that they have no choice but to love him.

Melinda, Ginny, Prima, Jeff, Shelly (hiding), Mickie, Marissa, Laura

Melinda, Ginny, Prima, Jeff, Shelly (hiding), Mickie, Marissa, Laura

We got to talk to a very nice gentleman who has gone through an almost identical experience and is still going strong. I think we could have talked for hours. He is just very calming and real. He said he is actually a bit compulsive and would track the volume of his tumor. He could graph the tumor shrinkage, but at one point it stopped shrinking. He expected it to shrink to nothing but they found that what was left was a bundle of scar tissue. He has a “local guy” and an “Anderson guy” and went beyond the protocol a bit, getting extra chemotherapy. He said he lost weight but indulged in Braum’s shakes morning, noon and night 🙂 That got a thumbs-up from Jeff. We were just very grateful to get to spend some time with him.

Dr. Oommen stopped in this evening and said he is waiting on a gene study from the initial biopsy; those results should be available in another week. Of the B-cell subtype possibilities, there are Burkitt’s, double-hit, and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. (I thought we had already established DLBCL, but we haven’t yet.) He said the cells are not staining like Burkitt’s but his KI score is 90-95% – in the Burkitt’s range. Dr. Oommen is proceeding with R-CHOP, the standard treatment for DLBCL, and if his kidneys are handling what is being thrown at them, Jeff may be able to go home Friday or Saturday. If he doesn’t respond well after another round, as judged by tumor shrinkage on CT scanning, he may change therapy to R-EPOCH. If the gene study shows Burkitt’s, the chemotherapy regimen becomes much more aggressive.

Visitors today: Dr. Gleason, Dr. McDonald, Dr. Burk, Carla and Haley Peveto, Nicky Crow, Pam McGlaun, Adam Alecknavage, Erica Mashburn, Ginny Durante, Melinda Rodriguez, Marissa Ramirez, Shelly Steinhilber, Mickie Mask, Laura Hernandez, Prima Reichert, Tammy Petermeier, Tricia Sharp, Kaye and Kim Hutchison, Teresa Bingham.

Some late-night reading:
http://www.cancer.net/cancer-types/lymphoma-non-hodgkin/subtypes
http://chemoregimen.com/Lymphoma-c-44-55.html#Aggressive