Friday, December 2, 2011

Great Ending to the Week

How cool is this?  Laure got to meet Dr. Keating with me today

2 Samuel 22:1-3
“The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield and the horn of my salvation."'s going to be hard to summarize the events of the past few days - I think I will make those of you who like detail happy - sorry to the rest of you :-)  When we met with Dr. Hosing on Wednesday, she was not nearly as sure that we would be going to transplant as we we led to believe on Tuesday.  She actually put the likelihood at 50/50, which was quite a shock - we got this news early in the day, so we were walking around in a bit of a fog for the rest of the day.....they promised to call us on Thursday morning after Dr. Hosing met with her colleagues and formed a consensus.  We got that call at about noon yesterday and the answer was that they were OK to proceed, but they wanted Dr. Keating's opinion as well - which is why I did not update the blog yesterday - as I said to Renee, Dr. Keating has surprised us a few times, so we didn't want to assume anything.

So we met with Dr. Keating this morning, and he just has a way of making everyone feel great, and he did it again.  He had a few bits of new and very good news - the first thing he said was that he supported the transplant option, so we finally had the last piece of the answer we thought we would have on Tuesday.  But, he also told me that my PET scan - a test which identifies tumorous tissue based on glucose absorption - was clean.  Which meant that the tumor that we have been so focused on, while it's still there, it's inactive, or dormant, and could even be scar tissue at this point - so it's less of a concern than we thought earlier in the week.  Dr. Keating also said that the percent of leukemic cells in my bone marrow had decreased from 52% in late September to 31% this week - this was a fortunate by-product of the 2 rounds of hyper CVAD - Keating called this 'minimal disease', which is what you want going into a transplant (if you're not in a complete remission).

So all in all, it has been another roller coaster week, but we are ending on a mountaintop.  Dr. Hosing and Dr. Keating both put the finishing touches on it today by telling me that with these most recent test results, they both feel I still have a 50% shot at being cured by the transplant.  The schedule for the next couple weeks is that Laure will have her stem cells collected on the 5th and 6th;  I will be admitted to the hospital on the afternoon of the 7th;  my chemo regimen will run from the 8th through the 13th;  and the transplant will be on the 14th (henceforth referred to as "day zero").

And now, for those of you who are still with me, a real treat - my first guest blogger, my sister Laure: 

A word from the "donor"- It has been a whirlwind week here with Dan and Renee. But, what a great hospital, and what great doctors!  We are so blessed to have the best care in the world.  Dr. Keating lived up to all expectations.  He is so warm, and funny.  Dan said, something that included, "if you cure me...." and Dr. Keating immediately interrupted and said "WHEN I cure you!!....."  and this not in any way and egocentric remark- he is just incredible. So,  I am thankful to be here and share this with them, and to play the part that God has given me to play- with Joy! 

Thanks Laure!  Apart from all the medical stuff, it's just been a blessing to 'hang out' together this week.

As always, we are borne along in this journey by your prayers, texts, phone calls, cards, love....please keep them coming.....Dan, Renee, and Laure  :-)

1 comment:

  1. Dan/Laure and gang:
    Well, you've had your share. It's wonderful that you have the peace of mind that you do . .
    and the contagious faith that goes with it.
    In responding, my golf experience yesterday might be of interest. Clearly, 36-degrees (with
    no wind) is second only to chemo. Had some good
    shots (on rain-softened course). My video
    "lessons", learned from "Seven Days in Utopia"
    movie must've helped. Great show. Buy/rent it?
    Robert Duval does a great job!! A kid named
    Black IS A GOOD GOLFER. Watch for 'im.
    Betty/I are getting with Harry/Betty in Chi
    this week. We're grabbing a meal + seeing an
    impersonator (Hershey Felder) tell us what it
    is to be a genius. They can fill you in.
    With your permission, I'll pass on info about
    your 'VISIT' to Texas, even though Bill's grown
    kids (your age) are still a days' drive from
    you. Pres (54). .Ft.Worth. Will (49). .Ft. W.
    Wade (45) . .Austin.
    I'll always remember your response to me when I
    asked about "golf tips". With some applomb, you
    replied, ". . .that you just hit the bawl."
    I'll work on that!! (:

    Dave (Betty Gillham . . .Topeka, KS (12/05/11)