Last week was brutal. Multiple trips to the clinic, too many needles, zero energy and joint pains. The last two clinic visits were on a wheelchair, mostly because of joint pains. This past two weeks were great on paper; the blood counts were near perfect. In the last test, her Hemoglobin was 11, Platlets were 300+, and ANC was a little low around 800. So theoretically she should be comfortable, but she was anything but. The only saving grace is that she does not have mouth sores and her nausea seems to be under control too. By this time in Phase 1, those were major issues. The comparison to Phase 1 is valid as the drugs, and the frequency of them, in the first 4 weeks of this Phase 4 is exactly like Phase 1. The one drug that is the main culprit (or help) is Doxorubicin. This chemo has a menacing red color and knocks her down in a few hours. The good thing is next Tuesday is the last time she’ll get this particular drug. Rachana has had the other drugs many times and has been able to handle them better.
Joints pain, particularly the knees was the main issue last week. Pain management is a well laid out process. Start with Tylenol, go to Tylenol with Codeine and then to Morphine depending on how bad it is. The problem is the body gets used to these drugs and they are no longer as effective. The last few days of joint paints forced Rachana to take Morphine which is a balancing act as that is our drug of last resort and we do not want her body to get used to it and at the same time the pain is severe enough that she needs it. I had a little foot ache for a few days that made me limp a little. So between limp and and her slow walks we were like a 80+ yr old couple. We had a little laugh!
Next week is going to be pretty busy too. Rachana’s sister from Amsterdam is coming for a month, her parents are leaving to India after 6 months, and it’s Rachana birthday on Thursday. It’s all going to be a very emotional week, and Murphy’s law, I’m out all week on a business trip. Alaap and Didi are going to help in my absence. Its nice to have the family around. Speaking about family, Rachana’s mom was a great help these last 6 months. The emotional support was the biggest benefit but taking care of the home, food and other household stuff made things very comfortable for all of us and especially Rachana. There is no one who could have done what she did for Rachana. We are very fortunate that they could come and be with Rachana at this time.