Round Four

It's treatment week again. Tomorrow will be a long day of infusions. Wednesday and Thursday will only require 1-2 hours in the chair. We're trying a new anti-nausea medication that is specifically for delayed onset nausea in combination with the Sancuso Patch this time. So far, nothing has completely eliminated John's nausea. But his sister, Lillian, who has been undergoing chemo and radiation in Reno, says the drug John will be taking this time (Emend) worked extremely well for her.

Today John will have CT scans to see how well his nodes have responded to the treatment at the halfway point. At the end of treatment, he will have more scans and another bone marrow biopsy.

Round five will be the last three days of the year. His sixth and final round of treatment is expected to be the last week of January. That will change if John's counts drop dangerously low and do not rebound sufficiently for him to tolerate subsequent doses of chemo on schedule.

The effect of chemo is cumulative. His white count did drop dangerously low after round three. But within a week's time, his counts had all rebounded nicely. When his counts drop into the danger zone, he has to take his temperature numerous times throughout the day because the slightest rise could indicate infection.

When we began this treatment journey, a CLL friend who was approaching the end of the same therapy told me that it would go by faster than we expected. She was right. Although John still has three rounds to endure, it's exciting to think that two months from now we will celebrate the end of these treatments and hopefully a long remission.

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