Friday, October 19, 2007

Day Two

Well it has been an interesting day today. Before I tell you about today let me tell you about yesterday evening. I passed my MUGA scan( the heart test) and my CT scan. I got two more transfusions last night. Today my blood count is up to 10.8 and I am feeling stronger. I am trying to walk alot. Those of you who know me know how strong an advocate of walking that I am.
Now about today. I was awakened at 5:30 this morning by the ENT resident. I was to be checked out by them to be sure there is no sign of my old cancer. We talked for about 30 minutes and then she left and I went back to sleep. Of course, you know that can't happen in a hospital. I was awakened at about 6:15 by the man who had to draw blood. Once that was done, I went back to sleep. That lasted about 30 minutes. Then I was awakened by a call from Passavant(the hospital I work at).They wanted to check the speakerphone connection so I could do the tumor board today. At that time, I just decided to stay up. The tumor board worked well and I got my 3 patients taken care of. It ended a little before 8. I tried to get a quick shower but did not have any towels in my room and they also called for me in the special procedures department of radiology. I went down there to have a Hickman catheter pu in. It is a special IV put in under the skin and tunnelled into the jugular vein. This allows access of 3 IVs without having to get stuck every 3 days for a new one. They will be using it for my chemo and in case I need to have antibiotics.
The procedure went well and I was back to my room before 10. I decided to order a late breakfast. I just ordered some cereal and fruit. A little while after ordering, they changed my room. I am now in an isolated wing to try and decrease the risk of infection. I waited an hour and still did not get my breakfast! To make a long stry shorter, I had been listed in the computer as NPO(nothing by mouth) in preparation for my Hickman caatheter. Somehow between moving and being busy around here they had not lifted my NPO status, so the dietary dept. refused to send my breakfast. Eventually they got it straightened out and I got my food about noon! I started to eat and got a phone call from my dear wife and we talked for a while. (Good thing all the food I ordered was cold!) I got started eating again and the ENT staff man Dr. Malone and the ENT resident came by to check me over. They did their exam and then did a pharyngoscopy at the bedside. This involves numbing up the nose and putting a flexible scope up my nose and down my throat to be sure there was no sign of my old cancer. I passed this test with flying colors. When they left, I was finally able to finish my breakfast! I had held off taking my shower till my food came(thinking it would just be a couple of minutes) I finally got my shower done and was ready for the rest of the day!

This afternoon, Dr. Lanzotti( my cancer doctor) came in and we discussed my treatments. I am going to be enrolled in a study for trial of a new drug to use with the usual drugs for my leukemia. I was to start treatment today, but Dr. Lanzotti had several other things come up today and he felt it would be best to start tomorrow morning. It takes about 45 -60 minutes to write out all the orders for my treatment and he did not want to rush it and make any mistakes today. I will be on IV chemo continuously for the next 7 days. After that, I will probably develop an infection due to low blood counts. I will be on IV antibiotics for another 2-3 weeks until my infections resolve and my counts get better. With any luck, I should be able to go home then. I will need to do another bone marrow biopsy at 2 weeks to see if the chemo is working. I am still trying to understand all of this. Since this is not a surgical disease, I am not nearly as familiar with it as I am with the diseases I deal with every day.

I did get a call from Dr. Russotto( a foot doctor I work with) and from Dr. Prabhakar( an internal medicine doctor who helped me get started on my treatments) this afternoon also. It was nice of them to take time out of their busy schedules to check on me and offer their support. Dr. Plummer( who I work with in the wound clinic at the hospital and who plays a baseball game online with me) also sent me a very nice email. I am lucky to have such good colleagues and friends!

It is time for me to take another walk and try and get some rest tonight. Tomorrow will be a big day so I will sign off for now!

1 comment:

Greg Allen said...

Rick

The blog reading was very interesting. I'm sending my best thoughts and wishes to you! Get well!!!

Greg Allen