Saturday, December 31, 2016

Autologous Stem Cell Transplant

I am fixin' to go through an Autologous stem cell transplant tomorrow, and thought I'd do my best to provide a sitrep during the event. I may feel too crappy to write, in which case this will be a noble but futile effort, but I'll give it a go.

Saturday, Sunday and this morning, I was at Emory getting a 3 part infusion of Kepivance meant to prevent mouth sores after the injection of chemo tomorrow. I feel like a steaming pile of feces right now, but made it to work anyway so I can save my few remaining hours of sick time.

Anyway, 0730 tomorrow, I muster at Radiology for a 0900 procedure to place a subclavian catheter (port) beneath my collar bone, and then will be admitted into Emory. Tomorrow afternoon is the 1 shot of Malphalan, and that's when the fun begins.

Tomorrow is called 'day zero minus 2'. 'Day zero minus 1' is a simple day of rest. 'Day zero' is when my stem cells (4 million of the little beasties) will be reinjected back into my body, and I will standby to standby by for the next 12 days.

On the bright side, my wife is flying out to be here from the 18th-23rd, and all things being equal, I might be able to go home during that period. Then my buddy Matt will be flying in from Phoenix to take over for her on the 23rd-30th. I'm hoping to be back to work by the 31st.

There is no trace of Multiple Myeloma in my family tree, and I don't meet the typical group it most commonly visits. But because it is closely related to Leukemia and Lymphoma, I fully believe (and so does my Oncologist), that the cause was excessive exposure to carcinogens; specifically benzene found in JP4, JP5, Naphtha, Toluene, and Methyl Ethyl Ketone, chemicals I commonly had my meat hooks in while serving in the USN. First VA claim was denied, so I'm waiting appeal with further proof as well as direction from my oncologist was submitted.

There's been a few cases of folks remaining cancer free after this procedure, though in no way is that guaranteed, so that's what my friends and family are hoping and praying for.

Finally, I set the date for this post in the future to keep it on top to provide a point of reference for the subsequent posts. Thanks for reading.