My appointment at Dana-Farber came with positive news today. The CT scan results and blood work continue to be cancer-free. I’m now on a 6-month schedule for appointments, with the next one in December. I spoke with my oncologist about my presumed problem with blood circulation, which causes my hands to always be cold. This has been annoying during outdoor activities (e.g. riding my motorcycle). Even when it is 90 degrees outside, I need to have chemical heat packs- the kind skiers use- inside my leather gloves. That makes it bearable, but my finger tips still become cold within about 30 minutes. It turns out that this has nothing to do with my blood circulation. One of the chemo drugs, Bleomycin, causes this side effect. I was told that this is likely permanent.
Posts Tagged ‘bleomycin’
I took a little bit of a hiatus from posting. I’m doing just fine, feeling completely normal since Sunday. The second round of 5-day chemo caused stronger side effects, which diminished my motivation to come online for personal stuff.
Last Tuesday, I received my second shot of white blood cells after work. It (or a combination of things) knocked me out. I ended up staying in bed from about 7 PM on that day through 5 AM on Thursday. At first I intended on working from home on Wednesday, but I couldn’t even stay awake to do anything, let alone work.
On Friday, I received my “off day” of Bleomycin. I was feeling depressed going into Dana-Farber, but it went ok.
I am happy that my treatment is officially over on August 1st- only a couple more weeks to go.
Yesterday was the friggin’ pits! I went in for “quick” chemo, just Bleomycin, which supposedly takes 15 minutes or so. I started off being late for my 6:45 AM appointment because I didn’t wake up early enough. I’m pretty sure I came close to passing out when my IV was put in, but I wasn’t particularly upset about it. I then had an “assessment-style” appointment about my current treatment. All of my tests are coming back good/normal. I complained (probably a lot) about things, especially when repeatedly asked “How are you feeling?”. Relative to chemo treatment, I’m feeling ok. Relative to a normal person, shitty. Ha!
I was told that Bleomycin, by itself, has minimal side effects- I might get a fever. Sweet. I was told that I didn’t need any additional anti-nausea meds (beyond the ones I already take regularly at home). I acknowledged this and OK’d the nurse to proceed.
I arrived home a little before noon. I decided to take a quick nap before working from home for the afternoon. This quick nap turned into about 6-hours of freezing chills, headaches and vomiting. Needless to say, I didn’t get any work done. This was the worst day for side effects to date. I will always ask for additional medication going forward.
Today I am feeling OK. I spent the day around the house cleaning up a bit. I’m glad to have some energy back.
The two patients seated adjacent to me make my 9-week chemo treatment seem like a joke. The first has 6-weeks on, 2-weeks off, repeated for 6 months. The second person is undergoing chemo indefinitely, as it treats, but will never cure his combination of colon and lung cancer. I think it is important to keep this in perspective, as this will be just a “remember when” story for me after August.
I took the train in to Boston for my appointments today, not out of necessity, but to figure how this is going to work when I’m either high on chemo drugs and/or exhausted from it. The train will work out fine, albeit a long ride.