Tuesday, March 28, 2006

My Inner Mouse Finally Showed Up

Well, I knew it had to happen sometime. You know that one of the chemicals that they give me is Rituxan and that is made from Mouse proteins or Chinese Hamster ovaries. Yesterday, soon after they started the Rituxan, I felt a strange popping on the top of my head. I called to Cheryl to look and, sure enough, mouse ears had popped out of the top of my head. I immediately put on my "Faith, Love, Hope, Win" hat to try to contain them, but they popped through that too. I told Cheryl to grab the camera so we could document this strange event. The evidence is here for all to see. Do you think we might have enough for a law suit? What's next? A tail? Only a cheese diet? Litters of critters? Will I have to sleep in a wire cage? Already I can't pass a trash can without an overwhelming desire to rummage through it. I guess this is still better than nausea or hair loss. Sigh, the things we have to put up with to beat Cancer!

Actually, the chemo went great again. Only this strange side effect documented above. You know, I think those ears make me look fat! I intentionally put on weight before the start of chemo because they said I wouldn't feel like eating and I would have to fight to keep weight on. They were wrong again. I have gained weight after each chemo round and am now almost 25 pounds heavier than my low weight last fall. Guess I will have to really work on that. I think some of it is the effects of the steroids and some of it is because I can't keep my butt out of the refrigerator or the M&Ms and cookies that my Mom likes to eat. We don't usually keep candy and snacks in the house, but Mom likes them, so we have them around.

I only slept an hour last night, but I did sleep most of the day yesterday. They start off with a Benadryl infusion and that really did a bigger job on me than usual. I couldn't get through the movie I brought to help pass the time and then I slept for several hours after we got home too. After the Benadryl wore off, I guess the steroids took over. This morning I started with the Prednisone tablets so I will try an Ambien tonight to try to get some sleep. If all else fails, I can overdose again on Phenegren -- NOT!

I had the two Tylenol to begin, then the bag of Benadryl, then the Rituxan, then the anti-nausea bag with the bag of steroids and then the bag with Cytoxan. We started later in the morning, but we were still done by 3:30, so not too bad. Cheryl left about 11 to do some shopping and brought lunch back and woke me up to eat it. Chicken sandwich, but no cheese - hmm.

My blood work from yesterday continues to look good! In fact my neutrophils went up. Now this is a different lab and they reported them as granulocytes, so I don't know how much difference that makes. Anyway, for those of you who understand this stuff, the results are as follows with this labs normal range:

WBC 5.0 Range 4.1 - 10.9 YEA!
LYM 2.8, 55.7% Range 0.6 - 4.1 and 10.0% - 58.5% Double YEA!
GRAN 2.0 Range 2.0 - 7.8 YEA (I think)
RBC 4.08 Range 4.20 - 6.30 Low, but not too bad
PLT 94 Range 140 - 440 Low, but not too bad and up from my lowest

Next blood tests will be April 10th and next Chemo with blood tests will be April 17th.

Again, thanks so much for all your prayers. Everything is going much better than I had imagined. I am continuing to work from home quite a bit and this also keeps me away from all the folks who keep getting sick at work. There have been many with flu-like illnesses that last for days and I have escaped it so far.


Margaret said...

WOW! Nice counts! Great pics documenting the mouse sightings! But don't worry. Somehow I can't imagine them getting you into a wire cage. I'm having the same problem with wanting to eat everything in sight. I thought this chemo stuff was supposed to make us LOSE weight. (shaking my head) Still praying for you on this end.

Karen said...

Love the photos, and congrats on the good numbers! "The Chinese Hamster Ovaries" would be an excellent name for a rock band!


DavidE said...

Here's a thought: to deal with weight and avoid the losing battle with the mouse sode effect - get yourself a "wheel"!!!!

Sorry, I couldn't resist!
P.S. What a great hat!!!!

Earl & Paula said...

Hi Mickey,er I mean John,
Love the new look! Your mouse ears are really quite becoming! It is good to see that your blood counts are doing so well. To be anywhere in the normal range is great, and the others seem to be inching nearer to normal. We are so glad that you are staying at home to work. You just don't need to be exposed to any germs right now. Keep the good news coming, and we will keep the prayers going. Our love to both you and Cheryl.

Anonymous said...

Thank-you and Cheryl for the wonderful visit. We love you guys so much. ( do you remember?)
Thanks for getting me set up to view your blog. Sorry about the mouse ears, but I think they kind of all something. Maybe the hair will come next. Ha! Ha!
Janel and Josh are here, maybe after we get through Josh's graduation we will set a date to see you guys.
Much Love,
Diane and Craig

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