Here we are... another day in paradise. Evan, Charlee and I woke early this morning and headed down to breakfast, leaving Logan to sleep in (as he usually does). We have two swipe cards that we shared between us, making co-ordination important when moving around the building... come down without one, and you cant get into the dining/lounge area, go up without one, and you cant get any further than the outside of the lift on our floor! Anyhow, back to today. This morning was a hectic rush of appointments for both Charlee and Logan. Charlee had to meet with the transplant team at 9am, then after meeting a few friends at med school, had another appointment at 12.30 with the vein people. (She has beautiful veins). Meanwhile, Logan and I had to race up the hill for a 10.30 appointment (luckily we met Evan part way and he pushed Logan, (cause he weighs a ton now). We waited for an hour, whilst listening to the fire alarm blast, until we got in to see the transplant lady, to find out that our bloods weren't through, and that we needed to go away and come back later. If they were good he would be admitted tonight. If not, we would wait and see. Having only an hour till the next appt (and not enough time to make a return trip to the house with the wheelchair), we treated ourselves to lunch. Won't do that again! $22.40 later, for a bap and a quiche, and a coffee! AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
Off to Radiation therapy from there... where Evan caught up with us. Charlee was allowed to drop him at the hospital and drive his car back to RMcD house. We met a wonderful doctor who explained all about the radiation Logan is to have. And true to form, most of it went over my head. But it was reassuring at the time... sorry I cant explain it in detail! This is what I can remember. Logan needs the radiation because the cancer hides in special safe places (that I wont name) and cant be reached by chemo. Consequently, it comes back when we think he is cured. The chemo into the spine helps to reduce this, and the radiation will KILL OFF all his bone barrow and eveerything in there. This becomes a point of no return. The regimen will begin with 6 days of radiation to his head, each session taking about 15 minutes. He will be an out patient for this and we will stay at RMcD house. After this we will move into the hospital and he will have total body irradiation (TBI) twice a day for five days (I think). Then they will give him her bone marrow. Somewhere in amongst all of this he will also be having heavy duty chemo (for good measure). It takes about 40 days for the graft to take.
Correct me if I am wrong (Charlee), but I think she has decided to go with the bone marrow transplant and this may have a fraction less chance of host vs graft than the stem cells. This is not performed much these day (the ratio is about (1:100). But we are just grateful that she is offering. It is a huge thing, and no-one would have thought any worse if she had chosen not to.
So, anyhow, after the meeting with doctor somebody, Logan went and had a CT scan done, to check the density of his body (radiation is done by density, and they make a virtual rectangle to radiate using his body and foamy stuff to even it out). I did a jigsaw while he did this! Next we headed to a radiation room to check it out, and to 'measure' him. Was interesting. They laid him on a table, which was sort of like a chair leaning backwards! They measured him from every angle, and then when we had finished there, it was back off to oncology outpatients (its now 4pm)... have I lost you yet?
Once back there, they said his bloods were still too low (neutraphils are 0.7), so he cannot start chemo tomorrow, but he couldn't anyway as we have an appt with radiology for the next two mornings.
Thursday morning: have a mould made of Logans head for the treatment. I will take phots for you!
Friday morning: fit the mould, and then do a practise CT scan to check they have got the overall density right.
So more early mornings, and this bloody hospital is built on a blood big hill!!!!
The good thing is, while Logan is doing this, I can do the jigsaw that they have laid out for passers by! I love jigsaws... they have said I can borrow one... yippee.... nice nursies!
Well, Evan and Charlee have gone home(6pm) and we have finished our dinner. I miss them already, and they only left an hour ago. Its lovely here, but as Dorothy said, there's no place like home!
You can call here anytime direct. Just look up Ronald McDonald House Auckland. Make sure you look for the one that says Grafton Mews (there are 2), and ask for, or press room 501. If we arent here leave Logan a message. We cant call you back, but if we are here we love to hear from people.
They are going to retest his blood again on Friday and if he meets the standards, will be admitted for chemo on the Saturday. If not, they will test him again on Monday. (Apparently Aucklander's dont work weekends).
Love to you all. I will put up photos as soon as I can find a SD card reader!