Yesterday, I got my second melphalan treatment. It was a bit scary knowing that the chemo was totally destroying all my body's defenses. Surprisingly, I still felt fine, probably due to the anti-nausea meds I was given.
Today was a whirlwind of activity. I had more visits than I can count from nurses, aides, attending physicians, interns, teaching assistants, physical therapists, dentists, nutritionists, and volunteers, to name a few. I am certainly getting an intensive level of care here. It's really great, but I have to admit it can get annoying to have a continuing procession of staff visitors hovering over me. There are times I want to be able to just lock the door.
Apparently I passed the test of not being allergic to sulfa drugs. Yay! I was on bactrim for almost 3 days with no visible reaction. That's good to know.
Today was the big day to get my stem cells back. They started at around 12:30. The whole process was somewhat anticlimactic, as it only took about half an hour to inject them into my Hickman port. They also gave me benadryl, tylenol, and ativan, so I was pretty sleepy all afternoon. However, I'm feeling fine now, still with no signs of nausea. Today is the first day of my new life with a new immune system, so Happy Birthday to me!
The stem cells came in two bags, one with 3.2 million/kg and the other with 2.2 million/kg. So it appears that Dr. Richardson decided to give me more than half of what was collected, leaving about 4.5 million/kg in reserve for a possible future transplant, unlikely as that may be. I'm comfortable with that.
I'll try to update this blog regularly over the next couple of weeks, depending on how I feel.