Today has been a pretty calm day, medically speaking. Still just running lots of antibiotics and tweaking meds a little here and there. I got some more platelets. I'm feeling pretty okay. Even Zoomed into the weekly staff meeting:
So, let's take today's blog to look ahead just a little. If you remember from our previous SCIENCE LESSON, I received what's called 7+3 "Induction Chemo". That's seven days of cytarabine and 3 days of daunorubicin. That finished last Friday, June 9. I'm also taking an oral trial drug called selinexor and it is given on Mondays and Saturdays for 6 doses. So even though I'm not really actively "getting" much chemo, the drugs are in my body doing their thing. My chemo side effects are likely to start to peak around the end of this week/early next week (like hair loss; hopefully not nausea).
On Thursday, June 15 at 9:50 AM I will have another Bone Marrow Biopsy (BMB). The first one was done bedside and if you recall my bones were too awesome and we didn't really get any useful marrow. The one this Thursday will be done under sedation and in CT so they're really sure to get everything they need. This will be the big piece of data we need to determine how things are going and what we might need to do next. Those results should all be back by Friday, June 16 so we can make decisions before the weekend.
Choose-Your-Own-Adventure* Plan A: We're satisfied with what we see in the BMB and decide no further chemo is needed right now for the induction phase and I have about another two weeks in the hospital to let my counts come back up and stuff and could be discharged by July 1.
Choose-Your-Own-Adventure* Plan B: We decide to go after that cancer a little bit harder with some extra rounds of cytarabine and/or daunorubicin. In this scenario, we're looking at another 4 weeks in the hospital with a discharge around mid-July.
Once I'm discharged, I'll have about a week and a half off before we do what is called a "Recovery BMB." So under Choose-Your-Own-Adventure* Plan A we'd get those results around mid-July. We'd be looking for the word "remission" there. Let's claim it!
If I am in remission, then we might start two rounds of what's called "Consolidation Chemo" (or "Booster Chemo"). Again the details will all come later once we have that good data from these future BMB, but those are generally six week cycles where I'll only be inpatient for about 4 days getting chemo, but then be discharged and able to be home some during each cycle as long as there aren't complications or infections.
So we're now another 12 weeks out....mid/late October. We might be looking at the possibility of a Bone Marrow Transplant around then. If we go that route, it is another month in-patient.
We'll go on like this as long as we need to in order to keep hearing the word "remission."
And after 5 years of being "in remission" AML patients are considered cured. (Here for it.)
So that's the long range view, the best we know it for now. Not much to do or say until we can get to Thursday's Bone Marrow Biopsy. I'm anxious about it, both for the procedure itself and the information and results it will give us. But once we have that info we can choose the right adventure for us.
Between now and then I appreciate your prayers....
-Obviously it would be great if we get to choose Adventure Plan A. I'd love to be breaking out of here before Independence Day.
- That the procedure itself will go well on Thursday.
-That my nerves will be calm (the sedation ought to take care of it, but I'm skeeeeered.)
- That the info we get from BMB gives us lots of information about my sub-type and overall prognosis going forward (and that it be good.)
WHEW! That's quite enough science for tonight. Thanks for hanging in on this Choose-Your-Own-Adventure*
*You don't actually get to choose at all.
P.S. You knew I wasn't going to leave you without any beach pics, right?