A Mother and her Two Daughters

21 April 2010

Four Down, Four More To Go

Tuesday marked chemo treatment #4.  That means four down and four more to go before my surgery.  My doctor continues to believe that I’m doing very well, responding to the chemotherapy.  I just feel it in my bones that this is all going to end well, that in late 2010 or 2011 I will move myself into the “survivor” category.   I hope to be just like Mom, who is out in California this week visiting with her forever friends from high school – Shirley, Jan and Marlis.  Allyson and Anna-Lee like to call them “The Golden Girls.”  At age 74, they have seldom missed a year of spending a week together just enjoying life.  They are my role models for girls having great fun!! 

A few details from the day:
  • The first four treatments have been a combination of Adriamycin and Cyclophosphamide, followed by an injection of Neulasta to help me fight the white blood cell deficiency and strengthen my bone marrow and keep it healthy.  This chemo treatment is very powerful but has lots of dangerous side effects.  The FDA will only allow patients to have so much of it as it is also can be quite damaging to the heart. 
  • The next four chemotherapy treatments will be a drug called Taxol. It comes with its own set of side effects, mostly bone and muscle pain.  Maybe I will get lucky and not experience this, just as I experienced very little nausea during the first four treatments. 
  • My next four treatments will mean longer days.  Each day begins with about 90 minutes in the lab for blood tests, then a visit with Dr. Makhoul, and finally they administer the chemotherapy in the Infusion Center.  Because the chemo I’ve been on only takes about 60 to 90 minutes to administer, most days I leave UAMS about 3:00 pm.  However, the new treatment takes THREE HOURS to administer.  I guess that means more reading materials and a stronger battery for my laptop. 

Dr. Makhoul has scheduled my next treatment for May 4th, AND I will also visit with my surgeon, Dr. Suzanne Klimberg.  At that time we will discuss having my surgery in July.  We are definitely making progress!!  


  1. Hang in there Girlfriend. You have the strength within you, the love and support of oh so many sending up prayers of thanksgiving for your continued healing, and almighty GOD who is with and within you to carry you through! Relax into his mighty arms and keep the faith! Sending you much love and light, Ginny

  2. Allyson just called me from Mizzou. Her question: "Is it your chemo brian, Mom? You need to read the first paragraph of this post. What year do you think it is?" How embarrassing. I've gone back four years in time. Ouch!


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