Day -2. I’ve successfully completed all three doses of rabbit ATG (with, thankfully, no further complications!), all four doses of fludarabine, and I’m currently running through my last dose of cyclophosphamide (plus mesna because all the peeing). I must say I’m very, very relieved that the past two days went much better than the first day. I was worried that I might have more adverse reactions towards the ATG and so mentally prepared myself to brace the worst that could come, but I tolerated everything really well! No headaches even! Through the combined experience and genius of all the doctors, NPs, nurses, and pharmacists on my care team, the choices to slow the ATG infusion and schedule/bum up the amount of medications worked great. Now onto the next hurdle, total body irradiation.
I haven’t been told when the radiation is supposed to be happening tomorrow, but I do know it shouldn’t take more than 30-45 minutes and should leave no marks and cause no side effects. After all, as I explained in a previous post I’ll only be getting 2 Grays of radiation spread throughout my body. This is purely to serve as another means of immunosuppression not immunoablation (I’m pretty sure I just made that word up). Fingers crossed for the best to come!
Last thing before I attempt to retire for the night as I’m still wrapping up the cyclophosphamide in the next hour and will get two units of RBCs since my hemoglobin dropped quickly over the past two days, I would like to formally introduce you to Adam‘s more experienced, beefed up, double deckered, older brother, Steve. He’s been using six units to continuously pump liters and liters of fluid into me like it’s nobody’s business (TWHS), and I’ve been urinating it all out, constantly. But that’s something I got used to with the last transplant. Anyway, welcome: Steve.
His crazy mangled mess of tubes are no problem and we’re getting along quite nicely. Though he’s much noisier than Adam was, I’m so doped up on benadryl, demerol, oxycodone, or a mix of them, I’m too tired to even notice. (And yes, each of these drugs are used to treat a specific side effect I’m dealing with. No, I’m not an addict. Jerks. 😉 )