Saturday, October 07, 2017

Transplant Class at Stanford

20171003_155815 (1024x768)After driving up from San Diego back to Shingle Springs on Monday, we headed back to Stanford on Tuesday. We were very blessed that Joyce’s friend Kathleen volunteered to drive us down to Stanford and sit in on the classes with us as an “assistant care-giver.” Joyce has known Kathleen since they were in high school and college together. I know Joyce appreciated the break from driving after 20 hours behind the wheel over the weekend. The classes consisted of two two-hour sessions. In the first one we went over the consent forms, and all the legal, medical and procedural issues they entail, with a coordinating nurse. Again we received a lot of information about the procedure and good practical advice. We attended this with three other patients and their caregivers who are preparing for the same procedure as we are. It was great to compare notes with them. There was one couple from Folsom who are about a week ahead of us and the other two were still waiting to be scheduled. The next session was over in the cancer center. There were about 25 people in that one. Another nurse went over the whole procedure again. It was helpful to get the perspective of a nurse who works on the floor where I will spend most of my hospital time.

So we are ready to begin the procedure. Tuesday we will head down to Stanford again. We have an apartment provided for the 4 nights we’ll be there. Wednesday they will drain more blood from me, take an X-ray and the doctor will meet with me. Thursday morning a new transplant catheter will be placed in my chest, the old port will be removed and they will start me on 2 days of continuous IV fluids that afternoon. The first chemo session will begin Friday and I begin very stringent infection precautions. I get lots more fluids until Saturday. Saturday afternoon I get to go home, where I’ll be taking neupogen and antibiotics for a couple weeks. The purpose of all this is to get my body to produce new stem cells which will get out into my blood for harvesting. Hopefully the stem cell harvest will happen around October 25-30. Of course the main prayer request is that we get good stem cells to harvest out of this. I am also praying that, with all the fluids I’ll be getting, we can keep the edema under control. We are moving into the main battle with the cancer this coming week and I need your prayers because “the battle is the LORD’s.”

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