Friday, June 1, 2007

Stem Cell Transplant

So the lady with Jovee's stem cells that were harvested on December 11th walked in our room with a stainless steel cylinder, about the size of a large hot water Thermos. Looked like plutonium, in the movies.

The nurse, Chelsea and the stem cell carrier, JoAnn, began the procedure at exactly 3:00 pm. Immediately when the started the infusion, Jovee got a nosebleed. That was a side effect that was supposed to happen but it was one quick cough and then a nosebleed, and then she threw up immediately. Because of the nosebleed, she threw up blood...and more blood...and more clotted blood came out of her. Good thing I hurt my back because I was on both knees, kneeling at her bedside, praying that she would do good and that all this shall pass. It took them only 21 minutes to actually give her her stem cells back but almost the whole time Jovee's nose was bleeding and she was coughing up/throwing up blood.

The preservatives that is used to freeze her stem cells, called MSO, 99% of the time will cause vomiting when the stem cells are given. It has an odor like corn chowder so the nurse had cotton balls in cups drenched in peppermint flavoring to help tolerate the corn chowder smell.

It did all pass and immediately after the 21 minutes were up, Jovee fell asleep. The stem cell transplant is basically like a blood transfusion. The stem cells just know exactly what to do and where to go. They gravitate to the bone marrow and then just start growing. Pretty amazing. Jovee's ANC was a ZERO today but hopefully the transplant will help her counts go up as fast as possible.

Today is day 7, a week after she first got the chemo. Usually, back in Spokane, during each of the 7 rounds, Jovee would get sick and we'd end up back at Sacred Heart 7 to 10 days from the 1st day of chemo. So this is the period where she's supposed to get sick. But with faith and prayers, she's not going to get sick. She's not going to get mucositis. Her body is going to heal and we'll get done with the radiation and then go back to lovely Deer Park. And never, ever have to do this again because all this treatment is going to work and kill every single dang cancer cell in her body. Jeannine and I are tired.

1 comment:

patrish622 said...

Hi Ty and Jeanine: Sue gave me the address for this blog today and I'm not sure that was a good thing. I can't seem to read much of it without a lot of tears. I sent it to all of my kids and especially to my granddaughter who is suffering from muscular dystrophy. She gets weaker day by day and has two little ones. I was hoping by reading about Jovee (she remembers her) would make her feel a little better. You and the kids are in our prayers every single day and sometimes more than once or twice. I am amazed at your strength. You are an example for all of us. Be strong. Hug everyone in the family for us. Pat Wessling and family