Wednesday, June 12, 2013

musings from post chemo dawn

What a short strange trip it has been. One month short of a year and a half as a Stage 1 Lung Cancer survivor, my staging skyrocketed to Stage 4 with brain metastasis.

Following 10 brain radiation treatments for the metastasis it was time to go after the cancer.

Appetizers for my first ever chemotherapy drip were of saline solutions plus a B-12 shot.

Next my oncology nurse blended in ALOXI (palonosetron hydrochloride) is an antiemetic and anti-nauseant agent with EMEND which when added to other anti-nausea meds can reduce chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting (CINV) for up to 5 days. … So far 10 hrs after the claim, it holds true,  though I am always within reach of my ZOFRAN ODT, 8 mg, “dissolve tablet on tongue”.

ALMITA I did not feel, but CISPLATIN ‘rocked’. I discovered there are times an air guitar just won’t do … you have to get up and rock the chemo pole wearing Capt. America leisure pants. (Especially when Guns and Roses are singing “Sweet Child of Mine” and Megan arrives with lunch!)

Accompanied by my IV pole I went exploring the building and  was surprised to find, Patti’s Mom and Dad waiting on a cousin. Enjoyable ‘surprise’ visit with them.

Wandering and with the Irish gift of gab, I met several fascinating people, couples, and families fighting to live. … The answer my friends, is in the stories of people not the prognosis.

Two more chemo drips scheduled over the summer, every three weeks ... then re-scan brain and lungs and see what is going on or not going on.

Some new ‘slow-motion Patrick’ took over once unhooked from chemo at the end of my 7 hr drip. To paraphrase Dr. Seuss, “I’m not sure I like slow-motion Patrick I say” However from talking with other’s in my chemo lounge the chemo fatigue is finite, it will end ... however a couple more mornings of sleeping through the night would be a treat.

I return today for a quick visit today to get a shot of NEULASTA (pegfilgrastim) designed to reduce my chances of infection by boosting white cell counts … and since I have every intention of staying alive, and around people, NEULASTA sounds like a friend of mine. … plus it came with a complimentary thermometer. … current body temp = 98.6 °F (37 °C) 

Patrick Leer
Health Activist:
Caregivingly Yours, MS Caregiver @

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