Paul Lockyer
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Last chemo !

Paul Lockyer
Posted by
14 Dec 2015

My white cell finally looked good & we were "looking forward" to the next step bone marrow transplant

December 23rd turned out to be the last time I had chemo, we had a nice quiet Christmas l got to see some close family members for the first time outside of hospital. We were due to go to my mothers house on Xmas eve but that was aborted when someone reported they had a cold. I was now in remission so needed to look after myself, unfortunately on Monday 30th my luck run out and l was admitted to hospital due to a high temperature & infection, this meant l wouldn't get the last dose of Pentostatin, the doctors decided that by the time l was well enough it may do as much harm as good. 

I was kept in over New Year this was the first time l hadn't seen in the New Year with my wife for 30 years ! The fever was under control following several doses of antibiotics & paracetamol, l started to think about going home. This was short lived as l developed a rash all over my body, particularly arms, legs & back. Little red dots that eventually blistered, another "favour called in" and l on my way dermatology. A biopsy was taken (Oh no not the bin AGAIN !) l had to have two taken as the first got lost! They never really confirmed what this was but a nurse on haematology thought that it was a delayed reaction to chemo.

The doctors instruction was to rest at every opportunity for the coming weeks to allow my body time to get ready for the battering it was about to receive. Go watch dvd's etc. but l found that difficult to do you can only watch so much TV & decided to have a clear out at home instead. All those junk things you keep, l don't know how many loads were taken to the tip and ended up on first name terms with guys there.

Comments

06.01.2016

Another fantastic blog Paul.

My transplant preparation was much faster than yours so there was less waiting around but I had the same feeling of restlessness and bored waiting for it to all happen. I'm glad that you found something to keep you busy and take your mind off things and I'm also really glad that they timed treatment to finish to give you the opportunity to spend Christmas at home.

How prepared for the transplant were you at this stage? Were you aware of everything that it would involve and the recovery process etc? Would be interested to know as I have to say that looking back I really didn't know all that much myself and I can't decide whether that was ultimately a good or a bad thing!

Andy

07.01.2016

Hi Andy, if anyone had been brave/daft enough to actually tell me all of the things that l would go through prior/during/after a bone marrow transplant l think l would have said at that stage "its been very nice knowing you" & gone home ! I found myself carried along by all that was going on around me & ended up sitting in the Marsden attached to a "dave" with that little bag of fluid. How can having that small amount liquid introduced into you body can cause so many problems ? As l have said in my blog l never thought for one minute it would take this long to recover, l knew to expect months rather than days but two years & counting ! The doctors always said that GvHD was a risk but they would be there to help me, which l must say they have. My original consultant asked me a rather shocking question the other day as to whether l thought all the treatment was worth it (not sure if she ment l could manage without it) l put her straight & told her l accepted all the help because not only am l worth it but so are my family & everybody that has helped me along the way. Paul

11.01.2016

Hey Paul, I know what you mean about slow recovery! I remember moaning to my consultant that I still couldn't do very much (after2years). I must have sounded very ungrateful. 7 yrs post SCT for HL, and I am still having 6 month checks with him, and also visiting other departments due to after effects. Despite this I am still glad to be alive, although I do sometimes wonder why I made it when younger people didn't.Best wishes for a healthy 2016. Louise