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  2. kate

    Week 15

    Well leaving today was a no go. Fever is under control but they think I have a skin infection from the port placement. That means I spent another day in the hospital alone on antibiotics. Dennis was sweet enough to drive back down here and bring me some stuff since I wasn’t planning on being admitted yesterday. Fingers crossed I can get out of here tomorrow. i had to get another blood transfusion today but other than that it’s been mostly antibiotics and painkillers.
  3. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    So last night they did get kates temp to stabilize with more anti-biotics and fluids. Also our friend Kevin hooked us up with a great HVAC repair man which we will always use now. He got us up and running (found a short). Now we work and wait for the request to go pick her up from the hospital.
  4. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    Just dropped Kate off at the Emergency Room at Harper Hutzel hospital. Dr.Yang called at 8:42am after I left him a message and he recommended I bring her down for some antibiotics since her white blood cell count is so low it may not be enough to fight any infection. So now I need to find a trane furnace repair tech that will come out. Both Schutz and Affordable both don’t have appointments until end of next week. My backup plan is pull RV right next to house with generator and run the A/C so she can keep her cool until we get the A/C fixed
  5. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    8:31am 102.4 (we will continue to monitor for a little bit more. If not down in next 10min I have to get her dressed somehow and get her to the vehicle)
  6. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    8:21am 103.1 and called the radiologist and left a message as directed to do by paperwork she was given. Pain medication isn’t working and she has a fever. I predict us having to go to hospital. we double checked with two other thermometers and the Vick’s oral and Braun ear seem consistent. Our new infrared forehead thermometer IR 988 says she doesn’t have a fever. What a piece of garbage. Checking on a refund/return on this crap.
  7. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    Today is a rough day for us. Last night our furnace went out so no A/C on a day that was up in the high 80s. Shutz Heating and Cooling is suppose to call me first thing this morning. Kate woke up with a fever of 102.8 at 7:52am so we have a wash cloth and Tylenol at 8am. Checked it at 8:02am and it came down with a cool washcloth mainly to 101.3 Going to keep monitoring every 10min until it gets down. i need to get our A/C back. I think we have a blown thermostat (comfortlink ii xl1050). We love our trane furnace but the weak link seems to be either the relay panel or the thermostat. Of course we have a very old A/C unit. Hope that’s not out since we don’t have the funds for that.
  8. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    Kates out of surgery and all is good. She’s weak in the knees and in pain/sore but she does enjoy not having the PICC line anymore. She is still very much raving on how awesome Dr.Yang is to her and how attentive he is to every detail. more to come later
  9. Earlier
  10. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: Bilirubin(Liver Function): White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): . Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): 6.8 Platelets (PLT 150-500): 100 Transfusions Blood: YES Platelets: YES/NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: YES/NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: YES Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES/NO Cyclosphomine: YES/NO Cytarabine: YES/NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): YES/NO
  11. rev.dennis

    Chemo Treatment

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: Bilirubin(Liver Function): White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): . Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): Platelets (PLT 150-500): Transfusions Blood: YES/NO Platelets: YES/NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: YES/NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: YES/NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES/NO Cyclosphomine: YES/NO Cytarabine: YES/NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): YES/NO
  12. rev.dennis

    Port & Bone Marrow Biopsy

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: Bilirubin(Liver Function): White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): . Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): Platelets (PLT 150-500): Transfusions Blood: YES/NO Platelets: YES/NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: YES/NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: YES/NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES/NO Cyclosphomine: YES/NO Cytarabine: YES/NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): YES/NO
  13. rev.dennis

    Chemo Treatment

    DAY1 of every 10 days of CHEMO
  14. rev.dennis

    Chemo Treatment

    LAB, Dr.Visit, Chemo
  15. rev.dennis

    Week 15

    This week isn't about the chemo but more about a big Tuesday appointment where Kate will move from a PICC line to a PORT as well as get an Bone Marrow Biopsy / MRD Test. What is an MRD Test? Measurable or minimal residual disease (MRD) testing is used to see if the cancer treatment is working and to guide further treatment plans. MRD testing is mainly used in blood cancers (leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma), but is being studied in other cancers. It is a type of personalized medicine, because the results can be used to tailor your treatment plan. What can the MRD test find? This test can find even the smallest amount of cancer cells that may be remaining after treatment. This can: Show how well your cancer has responded to the treatment you received. Do a better job of finding out if you are in remission than other tests. Find a cancer recurrence sooner than other tests. MRD tests use highly sensitive methods, including multi-parametric flow cytometry and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). These methods look for any remaining cancer cells that cannot be seen in routine tests. This test can detect even 1 cancer cell among 1 million normal cells. MRD testing is also useful in clinical trials for new medicines. MRD can show how well the medicine is working at treating the cancer without having to wait months to see if the cancer returns. MRD and ALL Part of routine testing in the treatment of pediatric and most adult ALL. Can detect relapse earlier than other tests. This allows for earlier treatment if relapse is suspected. Studies show that MRD is the best way to predict what treatments will be most helpful after the induction phase ALL treatment. MRD can also help identify patients most at risk for ALL relapse. These patients may have the best chance for a cure with a bone marrow transplant. Patients with good MRD response may be able to avoid transplant.
  16. This week is somewhat of a reprieve for me. I only had to go in on Monday. Luckily my hemoglobin and platelets were finally high enough I don’t have to go back for more count checks this week. As much as I love Karmanos and what they’ve done for me, it’s a nice break. With that said it doesn’t always mean I feel the greatest. Today is one of those days. I’ve felt very lightheaded when I stand. I made eggs this morning sitting in a chair. I find ways around it. Almost a week later and I’m still being spoiled with birthday surprises. Today in the mail I received a card and Blarney Stone from someone in Ireland. Even though this may not be how I wanted to celebrate my birthday this year, I have never felt more loved and cared for.
  17. rev.dennis

    Port & Bone Marrow Biopsy

    Big day for Kate. 7:30am port palcement (nothing to eat 6 hours prior. Procedure scheduled for 8am but have to be in office 30min prior) 11:00am Bone Marrow Biopsy/MRD Test being done by Dr.Yang. The MRD test looks microscopic level to see if the chemo is working at killing the cancer cells.
  18. ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: 3.2 Bilirubin(Liver Function): 1.98 White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): 0.6 Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): 7.8 Platelets (PLT 150-500): 42 Transfusions Blood: NO Platelets: NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): NO Cyclosphomine: NO Cytarabine: NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): NO
  19. This is our 2nd week of Chemo Treatment 3 times a week. This "should be" also our last 3 times a week treatment which Kate is excited about.
  20. So here we are at the end of another week. Today’s segment of “how much can we inject in her” was brought to you by 1 unit of blood and 1 unit of platelets. Although my platelet count is way lower than it should be, its higher than it has been so progress is being made. I woke up today feeling slightly nauseous and didn’t sleep well. The nausea seems to be subsiding (maybe my body just wanted the blood first) and my lack of sleep was due to a dog that is petrified of storms. At first I thought it was cute that she hated them as much as me....now not so much. Yesterday was my birthday under quarantine. I am still floored with the outpouring of love and support that I received. I am definitely feeling very blessed despite what the circumstances may look like. My husband never stops amazing me at the lengths he will go to make sure that I know I am loved. Let me tell you guys, its not in the flowers or chocolates or fancy dinners...real love is when they see you in your darkest hour and still know exactly how to make you smile by just being themselves. So this is it for this week. Monday you’ll get a new post to begin the new week and we continue on this cycle. For now, I am going to enjoy the weekend with my family and take comfort in what we have....each other. Bloodwork Results White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): .6 Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): 6.9 Platelets (PLT 150-500): 10 (double digits baby!!) Transfusions Blood: YES Platelets: YES
  21. Today is a great day as it celebrates a day back in 1985 when Kate Michelle was born with the help of her loving parents Diane and Larry Sipes and her two protectors (big brothers) Bill and Corey. To really celebrate and understand someone's birthday, you take a minute and imagine what would life be like if they weren't born. I know I would of never found true love. Someone who cares as much for me as I do about them. A best friend that I don't mind being intimate with. Sharing life experiences together I couldn't imagine doing all these things without her. So her birthday is a big day for me. I'll quote many songs that say, "The world is a better place with you in it" can not be more true about you Kate. Happy Birthday!
  22. With this pandemic, one major change has been that Dennis can’t be with me at these appointments. It’s definitely challenging for both of us. I struggle to remember everything they are throwing at me and he cant keep up on the blog like he wants to. The goal of this blog was to help others that may be going through something similar and struggling to find stories of the process. I know I couldn’t find much to tell me what to expect. The major thing that I am constantly reminded of is no two peoples cancer journey is the same. Whether its the type of cancer you are fighting or even how your body is handling it. Don’t compare yourself to someone else...that can lead down a frustrating path. So here we are. Me trying to help my amazing husband out by doing my best to update this as I can. He has been my rock and continues to do so much for me on a daily basis, the least I can do is try and write some words. ***Obligatory warning*** I suck at writing. You’ll probably easily notice the difference in my posts and his. I probably would have done better in English in school if it weren’t for the writing part. So sorry folks, you get what you get Monday I saw Dr Yang. My blood counts have been lower than expected but he’s not overly concerned at this point, just cautious. It means however that I have to keep having these lab checks done and getting transfusions. Some days I feel like their just testing the boundaries of how much they can inject in me at once. But its all for the greater good so I continue to endure. I have another lab check today with the results below and Friday. I will have another chemo and lab check on Monday the 18th and then as of now that will finish this phase of chemo for a couple weeks. On the 26th, I will have a port placed and my picc line removed. It’s a fairly simple outpatient procedure and I’m looking forward to not having this in my arm anymore but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was nervous about Dennis not being there when I wake up. Karmanos has been amazing though and I know I am in the best hands with the staff here. After the port placement I’ll get wheeled upstairs for Dr. Yang to do another bone marrow biopsy. My tolerance level for those and the lumbar punctures is reaching a disturbing level. The only nerves I have about the upcoming biopsy is the additional testing they are doing with the marrow. They are going to run a test called an MRD test which basically looks at the marrow at a micro level to view the cancer cells. We of course are hopeful and believing in positive results but I think that test result is what I am the most nervous I’ve been about. The anticipation certainly doesn’t help either. As long as all those results are good I’ll move on to the next phase of chemo. We don’t have a start date for that yet cuz its all pending these results. Dr. Yang again confirmed that as of now I will not be able to return to work until the end of September or beginning of October when I finish this “aggressive” round of chemo. Unfortunately that means I’m still a couple months away from having some type of normalcy return. Until then I will continue to try to update this blog as much as possible. Some days I have more energy than others but I will do my best. Plus there’s the part of hating writing and top that with my disgust of talking about myself. We’ll see how it goes. Thank you as always to everyone who reads this blog....your prayers and support for our family is what continues to push us to believe in the positive. Bloodwork Results White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): .6 Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): 7.3 Platelets (PLT 150-500): 3 Transfusions Blood: NO Platelets: YES
  23. rev.dennis

    Bloodwork

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: Bilirubin(Liver Function): White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): . Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): Platelets (PLT 150-500): Transfusions Blood: YES/NO Platelets: YES/NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: YES/NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: YES/NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES/NO Cyclosphomine: YES/NO Cytarabine: YES/NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): YES/NO
  24. rev.dennis

    Bloodwork

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: Bilirubin(Liver Function): White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): . Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): Platelets (PLT 150-500): Transfusions Blood: YES/NO Platelets: YES/NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: YES/NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: YES/NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES/NO Cyclosphomine: YES/NO Cytarabine: YES/NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): YES/NO
  25. rev.dennis

    Chemo Treatment

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: x.x Bilirubin(Liver Function): x.x White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): 0.0 Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): 7.6 Platelets (PLT 150-500): 42 Transfusions Blood: NO Platelets: NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): NO Cyclosphomine: NO Cytarabine: NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): NO
  26. Man 5am is early.. That's the time we have to get up to get to Karmanos for the Bloodwork that is scheduled for 7:15am RESULTS ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: 3.2 Bilirubin(Liver Function): .89 White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): .7 Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): 6.5 Platelets (PLT 150-500): 2 Transfusions Blood: YES Platelets: YES Procedures Lumbar Puncture: NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES Cyclosphomine: NO Cytarabine: NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): NO
  27. rev.dennis

    Bloodwork

    ********************* Bloodwork Results Potassium: Bilirubin(Liver Function): White Blood Cells (WBC 4.0-10.0): . Hemoglobin (HGB 11.5-16.0): Platelets (PLT 150-500): Transfusions Blood: YES/NO Platelets: YES/NO Procedures Lumbar Puncture: YES/NO BoneMarrow Biopsy: YES/NO Chemo Daunorubicin via Syring (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Vincristine via IV drip (avg 5min infusion): YES/NO Pegasparagus via drip (avg infusion): YES/NO Cyclosphomine: YES/NO Cytarabine: YES/NO Rituxan via IV drip (avg 4hour infusion): YES/NO
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