First the quiz. Which part of our body cannot ache? Answer at the bottom on this page.
Last week, on Sunday, we came home after a couple of days in the hospital for a battery of tests to make sure there was no infection in her spine, which might be causing the headaches. Tests were all clear but the headache didn’t budge. On Tuesday, she had the last of four chemos in the spine and also had a little bit of blood injected in the spine to clot and stop any spinal fluid leak. Tuesday was the worst day of this week. She threw up many times and the procedures were painful too. The blood patch did the trick and the headache went away, but was replaced by backache and tummy aches, without any relief. After a day of aches and low grade fever, the clinic gave her few more nausea meds and told us to take pepcid and tums for tummy aches. As far as nausea was concerned, things settled down a bit as the week progressed but the backache and stomach ache stayed. Friday night was a bit scary as her temperature was touching 100 and we are instructed to go to the Emergency if it reaches 100.5. That’s because her body cannot fight any infections and we need to get her treated at the first sign of an infection. Oh, insider info, if you want to take a day off, use the ear thermometer. The ear one was clocking 100.5 when the oral one was 99.8. The clinic uses either the forehead or oral methods to measure temp. and not the ear one.
Today was the best day in the last 2 weeks. She is feeling relatively better as the aches down a bit, but the low grade fever is still there and so she’s a bit uneasy. When she’s feeling better she does walk around the house; the kids got some summer homework done under mama’s supervision. I’m predicting the next couple of weeks will be good for Rachana; it’s not just a hunch but a very scientific observation…. allow me to explain. I have charts and everything for this one. The picture below shows her full chemo schedule. It takes a while to get a hang of it, so buckle up. CALGB 10403 is the technical name of her treatment plan, which has four phases: Induction, Consolidation, Interim Maintenance and Delayed Intensification. IT is intrathecal which means in the spine. IV is intravenous which means in the vein. The Induction phase was done during the 30 days we stayed in the hospital in April. This coming Monday will be day 29 of the second phase. So if you look for Day 29 in the Consolidation section, you’ll see that she is scheduled to get 3 things; Cyclophosphamide through the IV, Cytarabine is an injection in the tummy which I have to continue at home on days 30, 31, and 32, and 6-Mercaptopurine is a tablet which will be for 14 days from day 29 to 42. We’ll have to go to the clinic for test and get the Cytarabine injection on day 36 and I’ll administer them at home on day 37, 38, and 39, but there is no other chemo between day 29 and 43, and THAT is the reason I’m thinking it’ll probably be a good couple of weeks for her. See, I told ya, this is grounded in scientific reality. I’ll be an unbiased reporter as the events unfold during those 14 days.
Quiz Answer: Hair.
Rachana was saying, while smiling, that every part of her body has some ache and the one thing that cannot ache is almost all gone. I’m not sure where she gets her strength, but she is mentally quite solid.