This word I like... We architect our life...
A song, a sigh... developing words that linger...
Through fields of green, through open eyes... It's for us to see.
Interanimate: To animate or inspire mutually

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Day -3

Still here and recovered from the first round of ATG!

I meant to post a second edition yesterday after my chemo dance with ATG. Alas, ATG knocked me out with chills, fever, headache, and dizziness. It would have been better if I could have taken tylenol, but that was off limits cuz of the busulfex.
This is what I understand is happening with my white blood cells, especially T-Cells. T-Cells are the dudes that really go out to destroy foreign particles in the body. We have to get them down in order for them not to attack incoming stem cells wednesday. over the past 4 days, the busulfex has essentially put the whammy on new T-Cell production. IE: there are no re-enforcements for the T-Cells. However, the busulfex only stops new production of T-Cells, therefore any T-Cells hanging around before the busulfex must be now nuked. So they use this stuff called ATG. This are Antithymocyte Globulin Rabbit antibodies. Harmless little rabbit antibodies. However, when they are injected into the patients system, they alarm the T-Cells to the max. This is what the T-Cells do: Eat the antibodies, release cytokines, hope for re-enforcements. Eating the antibodies is good. Dont need them, but they are really not a harm anyway. Releasing Cytokines will heat things up causing fever, sometimes killing the foreign particles if they are heat-sensitive. There are no T-Cell re-enforcements, they all went home. After shooting their wad on the rabbit antibodies, the T-Cells die. So, the whole little staged fight is very well orchestrated to be deadly for the poor little rabbit antibodies and the T-Cells. For the chemo recipient the experience fortunately is not deadly. I have 3 more sessions of ATG chemo the next 3 days. I am going to ask for Demerol. Also today and tomorrow I get the final chemo called Cytoxan. This is the writeup on Cytoxan: "Cyclophosphamide stops the growth of cancer cells, causing them to die." I'll just leave it at that for Cytoxan. Well, reading on now, there is one more chemo in store. It is called Methotrexate. This drup stops the growth of cancer cells. I will get shots of this stuff Jan 10, 12, 15, and 20.
I dont know what I would have done last night without Cathie stroking my fore brow and whispering words of encouragement.


K&L said...

Wow, what a night!
I wonder how you'll feel about the Easter Bunny in a few months. Hopefully this little episode will be distant, past history by then.

Anyway, I wanted to comment on the choice of Room # for you! "360" a complete turn-a-round! What a good omen, don't you think?

Well, just a couple of more days 'till your new beginning. Bet you can't wait.

Love and prayers,
Katy & Larry

Anne said...

Hi Jim,
Yuck! I'm so sorry you are feeling bad. But - that means all those buggers are dying. Think Gladiator, Rambo... your body is going to be all ready for the new invasion of donor cells. Glad to see your spirits are up. Nice to know you can still whistle at your wife. She is wonderful - you guys have a great relationship. Prayers and Thoughts your way. Anne

Duane said...

Hey Jim,

So glad to see that Cathie is there by your side offering comfort at this challenging time.

Thinking about you!

BTW, ATG was used for my SCT too. SOLIDARITY, man!!