I'm receiving updates from a variety of sources on any given day and am doing my best to make sure the blog is as updated and clear as possible based on those updates. Here is the latest from Deb McIndoe, a friend of the family:
Today is a big important day for Liz. She is having a "port" put in, that will allow the staff to give IV meds, and take blood easier. She is having a spinal tap to test the spinal fluid, and also to give an initial med that will protect her organs as the chemo starts to work. The leukemic cells will die quickly and will be need to be flushed out.
Liz is also having a bone marrow aspiration to see what kind of leukemia she has. The tests should be back tomorrow the latest. The doctors will start an aggresive protocol of treatment tomorrow based on the results.
Leukemia is when the bone marrow produces way too many immature white blood cells. These immature cells cannot fight infection, so Liz is more prone to infection, and they also take up lots of room so there are much fewer platelets, red blood cells and mature white blood cells. Before the bone marrow today, her platelets need to be 100 or above. The nurses gave her a 3rd bag of platelets last ngiht as her level was only 61.
There is MUCH to be hopeful for. Childrens is an amazing facility, and the oncology unit is in the top 3rd in the world. The protocols are even better than when I worked in pediatric oncology 15 years ago, and they were terrific then. Lizzy is in for a very rough season though. As chemo destroys fast-growing cells, it affects good fast growing cells like hair and mucus membranes. They will try to support her with anti-nausea meds and such, but she will likely expereince nauseau, vomiting, diarrhea, mouth ulcers and maybe hair loss. She will feel VERY sick. Her white blood count will drop very low, and she will be prone to infection. All of this is to be expected, and can be very serious. At the very least, there will be many late nights, and Liz will be very sick for awhile.
They changed Liz's room last night. She is on the 5th floor in room 45. It is a bigger room, and she was up for giving Randy (her dad) instructions on how to hang her cards on the wall! (Adorable!) She is making a montage on the wall, so colorful home made cards are a treat!
If/When you visit, please make sure to wash your hands. Christine (mom) likes it when visitors take the initiative to wash their hands! Yes, we need to PRAY. For for wisdom, for peace that passes understanding...for complete and total healing!