Thursday, February 08, 2007


Hi everyone:

Edward Hospital called us late this afternoon to let us know that they will be ready to start Patty's next round of drug treatment at 8:30 am tomorrow. So, after weeks of waiting, and with little fanfare, the final details appear to have come together pretty quickly.
In what I'm sure is not the last irony we'll experience, treatment will take place at Edward's Cancer Center, even though Patty is under Cardiology's wing. If Patty tolerates the drugs well, she may be able to receive future rounds of the medicine from home.

To be honest, both Patty and I are feeling some jitters about this next round of treatment. We've heard that the two drugs in the mix are "generally well tolerated." This should provide some comfort; however, we heard similar claims made for CellCept, which really did a number on Patty, and for several other drugs that made Patty's blood pressure plummet.

One of the drugs tomorrow is Cytoxan, a chemotherapy drug that Patty has taken in the past; this time, she'll receive it intravenously instead of as a pill. The common side effects are nausea, vomiting and gradual hair loss. The other drug, Rituxan, is called a monoclonal antibody therapy. It can cause headache, flushing, dizziness, nausea and rigors. What's more, I am of course fretting about a rare, potentially fatal side effect of Rituxan. Please don't let my anxiety rub off on you; I thought I was going to lose Patty to the blood infection earlier this winter, so I'm predisposed to be a worrywort.

I will try to post an entry tomorrow evening, after Patty returns home. Let's hope our patient finds a way to overcome the antibodies issue this time, because our guess is that there aren't many more new ideas out there.


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