Saturday, February 21, 2004

NO MORE CHEMO! We got back this morning after finishing up the last bag of MESNA. Anthony was very excited this whole week. He was talking to everyone and cooperating with everything. He would wake up every morning and want to cross-off another day on his chemo countdown chart (he also got to eat a Hershey's Kiss each day). When he got home today, he went into the family room, started running around and said, "C'mon Em, let's get excited!" to Emily.

He has been eating like a pig all week and hasn't felt nauseous. I guess he is so excited that he hasn't had time to feel sick. He had visitors from his "adopt-a-family" sorority all week. They brought Silly String one day, which he loved. Yesterday, Jenn (the receptionist on the floor) gave him a big syringe and a cup of water and told him to go squirt all of the nurses to pay them back for the last 10 months. He happily chased them all down and got everyone wet. This morning, he didn't want to walk to the parking deck with me to get the car. He made me go get it and bring it around front while he stayed on the floor and rode the tricycle around.

We got his final scans done while we were there, instead of doing it as an outpatient in a couple of weeks. So far, the CT scan was clear, the bone scan showed a little reconstruction or bruising happening on the 6th rib, which could either be from his falling last week, or the bone growing around the wedge in his chest. The results from the MRI haven't come back yet, since we did it late yesterday, but no one is expecting any surprises.

Now, we just go to the clinic every Tuesday for about another month and then get his Broviac out. He will be very, very happy when that day comes, and so will we.

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

We're in the hospital for the last chemo! Anthony was very happy all day today and multiple people noticed. He has been talking more to the staff and fooling around more. He knows this is the last treatment and can't wait to get it over with.

Since the outpatient radiology services here have stopped taking Cigna, they decided to do most of his final scans as an inpatient during this last treatment. This is both good and bad, I guess. It is a little stressful doing the scans, so I'm not looking forward to it being done during this treatment. It is stressful enough just trying to stay on schedule with the chemo infusions, but now we have to worry about the scans causing a delay in the schedule. On the other hand, it will be nice to have everything done over five days without coming back for a marathon day of scans.

For those playing the home game, counts were: WBC 6,900; HGB 10.8, PLT 343,000, ANC 3174.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

We had another little scare yesterday. Anthony was fooling around and fell (threw himself) on the floor. He got up, started screaming, and ran into the corner so Maria would not touch him. He wouldn't move his left arm for a while and kept saying his chest hurt. Maria finally felt his chest and something felt like it was sticking out (a bump). She called me and told me all this, so I went home and took him over to the clinic. All the while, Maria was thinking that the wedge in his chest shifted and I kept flashing back to when all of this started and he had pain in his chest, wouldn't move his left arm and there was a bump there (I tend to always think the worst). When we got to the clinc, Dr. Kamen felt around a lightly as possible and said he felt the edge of one of the ribs that had been cut during the surgery. He sent us for a quick X-ray just to placate us, and read them right there. There was no shifting, and nothing on the rib. He must have fallen on his chest, and the part of the rib that was sticking out bruised his skin. Later that day at the clinic, Anthony was fine, moving around and acting normally, making us look pretty paranoid and foolish.

After thinking about it more, I remember right after the surgery that Maria was feeling the area and felt this rib sticking out. She said, "boy, I hope that doesn't bother him". He hasn't let us touch that area since then, so we didn't remember how it felt. Anyway, more gray hair to add to the collection...

By the way, counts on Tuesday were good: WBC: 4,500, Hemoglobin: 10.5!, Platelets: 220,000! So, we seem set to do the last chemo next week. If anyone wants to come to visit, this may be your last chance to come to the hospital. We'll be in from 2/17-2/21.