Wednesday, September 23, 2009
YES, we are done with Interim Phase 2
Uncle Gene, from New Jersey, visits Liz!
Yuck, yuck, and double yuck, that is all I can say for this phase. I know it is a necessary step in saving her life but what an awful experience. Elizabeth has been more sick in this phase than any other phase so far. I do know that because of your prayers she has had a mental toughness and inner strength and spirit that can only come from our father. Thank you for being faithful.
We will be going on to the next phase which is called Delayed Intensification 2. This will have drugs she has had before plus a new one, radiation. I will fill you in on the details when I get them. If all goes as plan, and we know she never follows the plan, she begin this phase on October 9. Her counts have to be at 750 for her ANC and 75k for her platelets. Her platelets are falling and she is down to 50k. A normal count is 150000 to 400000. Here is a quick lesson on platelets. Platelets are cells made in the bone marrow and then released into the blood. The platelets stick together to form blood clots; blood clots help stop the body from bleeding. The body has a normal process that creates new platelets and destroys old platelets. This process keeps the right number of platelets in your blood. In people with ITP, known as thrombocytopenia, the process is not working the way it normally does.
Here is a quick refresher course in ANC's. The absolute neutrophil count is the real number of white blood cells (WBCs) that are neutrophils. The absolute neutrophil count is commonly called the ANC. Neutrophils are key components in the system of defense against infection. An absence or scarcity of neutrophils (a condition called neutropenia) makes a person vulnerable to infection. After chemotherapy, radiation, or a blood or marrow transplant, the ANC is usually depressed and then slowly rises, reflecting the fact that the bone marrow is recovering and new blood cells are beginning to grow and mature. A normal ANC is 1.5 (1500) or higher; a "safe" ANC is 500-1500; a low ANC is less than 500. A safe ANC means that their activities do not need to be restricted. So on that note, you will need a flu shot in order to come and visit Elizabeth. Randy, Jim, and I just received our flu shot at Walgreen's this evening. Our insurance was accepted and we paid nothing for it so please remember to check when receiving your shot. We have not come this far to have her life put in peril or jeopardy because she catches something from a visitor who has not taken the time to get their flu shot. I don't mean to sound rude or ungrateful but I am a mother who is is frightened and fighting for her child's life.
Please pray for the following:
All the families and children on A5 south
Dale and Sally, Alex's parents, that they feel some peace and comfort
Liz can start her next phase on time
for minimal side effects
she remains on her own two feet without complications from the Vincristine
she can attend her homecoming dance Oct. 10 ~ she really wants to go ~ small in the scheme of things but big to her :-)
Blessings and praying for all of you,