Saturday, May 24, 2008

Dex and the kangaroo

First off, here's a photo of me taken by WCK. Yes, I'm wearing a t-shirt with Mr. Rogers on it. It says, "IT'S GOOD IN THE HOOD". I miss Mr. Rogers.



Yesterday was my monthly appointment at the Cancer Center. My CBC results were all great. White cells were slightly low, but my hemoglobin is still awesome at 12.9. Dr. GPO walked in and said, "You didn't get too worked up over last month's results, did you?" Um. I'm obsessed with last month's results. I have this giant "2.1" in my head at all times. I spent several weeks going shaky with fear whenever I thought about last month's results, which is pretty much all the time. I'm over the shaky-with-fear phase, but I still think about it nonstop. I'm trying to be practical. The stem-cell transplant that I'm sure I'm going to need is all planned out in my head. At least I'll get to wear cool hats and won't have to worry about blow-drying.

Dr. GPO launched into his speech about how THIS IS NO BIG DEAL and he is NOT AT ALL WORRIED. He says my myeloma is still under complete control because none of my other numbers (hemoglobin, kidney function, albumin, etc) are doing anything bad. He thinks that with the re-addition of the dex, my M-spike should go shooting back down. It was a very happy speech, which I guess I appreciate, but I've heard happy speeches from him before, only to have bad test results come back and cancel out the happy speech. Like the first time I ever saw him: "Oh, this is NOTHING. You probably just have some extra protein floating around in your body." Hmmm. I totally fell for that one.

Anyway. I should get the results next week, and then I'll have another test June 2 at Mayo.

As for the dex, I'm now in the middle of my third dose since starting back on it. Things are slightly better than before. Still yucky, but better. The nurse at Mayo suggested taking it right before I go to bed instead of first thing in the morning. I was really skeptical, but this has actually helped so far. I sleep through a lot of the yuckiness on the first night, it starts to kick in and make me feel perky by the time I wake up, and it starts to wear off by the second night. I still have the infamous Dex Crash after that, but I'm not sure there's a way to avoid that one. It's like a tired, groggy, my-brain-doesn't work withdrawal feeling from the dex. My last crash, though, didn't seem as bad as others I've had. I was actually able to take WCK to Penguin Park, which is one of the wildest, most fun parks in our area. I've had dex crashes in the past that would have rendered me completely unable to deal with the concept of a 20-foot kangaroo:




So, we'll see how it goes. The way it affects me could change at any time. As Winnie-the-Pooh might say, "You never can tell with dex."

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I remember feeling flu-like symptoms after my "4 days on" of the Dex. I had a doctor at the City of Hope suggest taking 1/2 of a pill for a day or two to help my body adjust to life with the Dex again. Although I was very skeptical, I was willing to try anything and found that it was very helpful for me...

Anonymous said...

Oops, I meant "to help my body adjust to life without the Dex again" - so four days of the full Dex dose and then 1 - 2 days of taking 1/2 of a pill.

Kat said...

Hi Karen,
I was just wondering how you deal with WCK with the Dex crashes? When I had the Dex crashes I couldn't function too well and had to have someone here to help with my very active 2 1/2 year old. I dread going back on the dex but I know the day will eventually come. I'm one year post transplant and currently enjoying a treatment holiday (stopped consolidation thalidomide due to increasing neuropathy). Would be interested in hearing some of your strategies!

kat@denio.com

A Mom said...

DEXy's Midnight Runners! Come on, Karen, everyone, dance!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXLHUThBib8&feature=related

Karen's sister said...

"And I won't have to worry about blow drying..."

You know that when it ever comes to that, I'll shave my head out of solidarity with you. We could start a new trend.

Karen's sister said...

Ha! Dexy's midnight runners... a perfect theme song. They played that every night at Shafts, the night club at the Uni. of Glamorgan! Each... and every... night! It was one of those where you'd make a big circle with your friends (or whomever was there) and put your arms around each other, sway, and sing along, then when the "Come on Eileen" part came on, you'd break up and jump around... then repeat that until you either fell down, or the song ended. Good times! You should try that with WCK.