The information in BLUE in this post is technical information I copied and pasted from the internetThe diagnosis is official…it isNON-HODGKIN’S DIFFUSE LARGE B-CELL LYMPHOMAI don’t know too terribly much about it and when I do a Google search I don’t learn too much more…basically it is an aggressive type of lymphoma that is treatable…can’t say it is curable of course…they seem to think it will respond well to chemotherapy and is potentially curable…I will be admitted to the hospital tomorrow (Wednesday) morning and will be there through the weekend probably being released Monday…to monitor fluids and make sure I am tolerating the chemotherapy well…it can cause kidney failure…so they want to monitor me closely…The kind of chemo regimen I will be on is called CHOPCHOP is one of the most common chemotherapy regimens for treating Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Regimen Drugs. The following are the drugs used in the regimen. Select a drug to see a page and pertinent information.
- Cyclophosphamide (brand names cytoxan, neosar)
- Adriamycin (doxorubicin / hydroxydoxorubicin)
- Vincristine (Oncovin)
- Prednisone (sometimes called Deltasone or Orasone)
Side Effects: These drugs can cause nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. There are medications your doctor can prescribe such as Zofran or Kytril that may lessen chemotherapy induced nausea. Fatigue is common during chemotherapy treatment. Proper rest and pacing oneself may be helpful. Treatments can be delayed if the patient has a low white blood cell count (neutropenia). Blood counts can be raised by drugs such as Granulocyte Colony-Stimulating Factor (G-CSF, brand name Neupogen ®) – a drug used to stimulate the production of granulocytes in the bone marrow. The drugs will make your hair tend to fall out (alopecia) – you might consider headcoverings .The doctor said that I hair loss will be complete in about three weeks…and that it would grow back about three months after completing the chemo…I will be getting 8 rounds of chemo…one day every three weeks I will be in the hospital for 6 hours getting my treatment…we will see how my work schedule fits into this once we see how my body tolerates the chemo treatments…apparently everyone reacts differently so we can’t know how I will do just yet…After the official diagnosis bright and early this morning…my aunts and mom and I went to breakfast at Denny’s then back home for an hour before going back to the hospital for another four hours to get a PICC line put into my arm…I needed a PICC line because I have tiny veins… A PICC line is, by definition and per its acronym, a peripherally inserted central catheter. It is long, slender, small, flexible tube that is inserted into a peripheral vein, typically in the upper arm, and advanced until the catheter tip terminates in a large vein in the chest near the heart to obtain intravenous access. It is similar to other central lines as it terminates into a large vessel near the heart. However, unlike other central lines, its point of entry is from the periphery of the body the extremities. And typically the upper arm is the area of choice. A PICC line provides the best of both worlds concerning venous access. Similar to a standard IV, it is inserted in the arm, and usually in the upper arm under the benefits of ultrasound visualization. Also, PICCs differ from peripheral IV access but similar to central lines in that a PICCs termination point is centrally located in the body allowing for treatment that could not be obtained from standard periphery IV access. In addition, PICC insertions are less invasive, have decreased complication risk associated with them, and remain for a much longer duration than other central or periphery access devices. Using ultrasound technology to visualize a deep, large vessel in the upper arm, the PICC catheter is inserted by a specially trained and certified PICC nurse specialist. Post insertion at the bedside, a chest x-ray is obtained to confirm ideal placement. The entire procedure is done in the patient’s room decreasing discomfort, transportation, and loss of nursing care.Eventually, I will have a port in my upper chest surgically put in so that I don’t have these PICC tubes sticking out of me…After getting the PICC line mom and I went and got our hair cut…I got a drastic cut, it is cute, it is me…I’d been growing it out just to save money on haircuts but after today’s diagnosis I needed it to feel more like ME…Then we got a couple of new PJ bottoms, tee shirts, and socks cause I need to feel comfortable and good if I am going to be in the hospital…now we are HOME and I am getting ready to pack for my first EVER hospital stay…I have nothing to say about how I am doing emotionally, I’m taking it well I guess…I will have my computer at the hospital and I know I will cherish whatever communication I can from YOU my friends and family…I am sure there will be more frequent blog posts…Until tomorrow