Monday, September 11, 2006

A Day of Panic

I’m sitting in a recliner normally reserved for chemo patients as I type this entry. I’ve spent the last 4 hours on a stool next to Patty in her chair. As the chemo suite emptied out, I finally had to move over to an empty chair next to her because my back couldn't take the stool any longer.

It’s been an interesting morning. I should have known it would be this way when I hit the wrong button on the alarm clock at 6:00. Wrong day for that. I realized my mistake at 6:54. An hour later than our normal time to arise. Can you say frantic, express, rush attempt to get everybody ready and out the door for school? I can too; we rolled out at 7:14. 20 minutes, not to shabby. This meant that the back road route was in order since I had missed the 7:10 deadline to travel Emory Rd and make it on time. The back road route? A meandering route that roughly parallels Emory Rd. It takes us up Pelleaux (you just think you know how to pronounce it) and down Long Hollow, Brushy Valley, and then cuts up Cruze Rd to Clinton Highway where we then join back into our normal route. We made it with 5 minutes to spare. whew… (hand wiping forehead).

Faye Neff graciously came over to watch the boys for us. Patty and I arrived at the cancer center at nine. Little did I know that there would be more panic to come. We checked in and they drew some blood work to have a baseline reference for Patty’s future blood work. They inserted the needle into Patty’s port and she said it wasn’t as bad as she was anticipating. They gave some preliminary drugs to help her with the chemo side effects such as nausea, allergic reactions, etc. The fun was yet to come.

They begin to deliver the Taxotere first. It wasn’t long before Patty told me she felt something in her chest. I then turned around and her face was blood red and she was beginning to panic. She said her chest was getting tight and her face was almost completely red. I called for the nurse and they immediately ran over and disconnected the Taxotere and started pushing IV Benadryl and more steroids. They did their best to assure her it would be ok and shortly after her color begin to return and she started to calm down a wee tiny bit. For some reason, I was rather calm through the event but I became jittery after the fact. The doctor came over and checked her out and they decided to wait 30 minutes before they tried again. If she had another reaction she probably would not be able to receive Taxotere as part of her treatment. She would also have to take a different chemo drug that was not as effective as the Taxotere. This also meant she wouldn’t be able to receive the Herceptin until the main chemotherapy was completed thus prolonging her treatment course by another 3 months. So to say we were a little tense, especially Patty, when they restarted the chemo would be an understatement. The pucker factor was in the red, for me at least. It’s safe to say that we lifted up a few prayers during this short period.

God graciously and mercifully answered them.

They started her off with the slowest amount they could give and she seemed to tolerate that well. They then increased the amount every 30 minutes until they got it all infused at 3 p.m. They just now started the second drug, Cytoxan, a few minutes ago. Besides being a deadly chemical that is related to nitrogen mustard gas that has been used in chemical warfare and kills cells in your body with no regard, it’s a relatively less allergic drug.

Let’s hope and pray the evening goes a little smoother. I’m drained and I haven’t even had chemo today. Pray for Patty.


Anonymous said...

I have thought about you all day long and finally called Faye and found out about the problems with giving the chemo. Please let me know how Patty is tonight. I am here if you need me to help get the kids bathed and in the bed. Tell Patty I love her and am thinking of her ordeal today.

Anonymous said...

Scott and Patty
Just read about all the problems today, Mother said something about there being some kind of problem with the treatment when I talked with her earlier today. If you need me to come over, call and I can be there in about 3 hours. Love you both. Rosalind

Anonymous said...

I pray you are doing well after your ordeal with chemo. I'm glad you tolerated the Taxotere the second time around. I will continue to pray for you & family.
Tammy Nickles

Anonymous said...

Patty and Scott,

What a day.... I hope the evening goes better. We are thinking of you and saying many prayers.

Love you both,

Chuck and Beth

Anonymous said...

Matthew & I are praying for you and hope that you have no more scares like you did today. God is great and merciful, I know you are thankful of that after today. We love you and just wanted you to know we are here for you.

Robbie Hurst

Anonymous said...

Patty and Scott,
What a day! I am so sorry you had such a scare! I am praying for you and will continue to pray each time I think of you (which is often) Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you guys!
Kim Rhode