27-Apr-2011 – 14:00hrs. Velindre CHEMO TREATMENT

27-Apr-2011 – 14:00hrs. Velindre CHEMO TREATMENT

Hi,

lunch was pleasant in the canteen which is just across the driveway from the CDU cardboard box so when the time came I wandered in to be plugged up with no waiting time.

The chemo nurse was brilliant as she had made me up a prescription for yet more mouth washes for the Mouth Ulcers, with much reassurance that they would have me eating toast in no time!!! She lies so charmingly 😉

As we came in she asked Lee if she would mind taking the prescriptions around to the pharmacy which she was good enough to do – I gather it is a VERY busy pharmacy and prone to major glitches due to under manning – as ever management seem unable to get the logistics right on staffing or ‘kit’, much too busy on ego projects squanderring money that should be spent on the core service on footling politically correct stupidities and rebadging to make childish points!

Well this time it was into the chair and a cannula in the left hand – I just have this feeling that if they manage to damage a hand, nerve whatever I am much better off with it being the left hand – I am VERY non ambidextrous!

Fortunately needles never seem to be a problem with me and very rarely are they painful or bleed (Well So Far!).

A quick proving sluice into the vein of saline solution and then the bag is switched to the gemcitabine which is the chemo drug with the saline carrier where as the carboplatin is using a glucose carrier and is light sensative. So just the gemcitabine this time which was over fairly rapidly (about 40 minutes).

Whilst the last of the gemcitabine was being run in the sister kindly rang up Dr. Lester’s secretary for me as I had a request!!!

I would like copies of my skeletal bone scan and the precedingCT Scan – surprisingly in all the years she has been working at Velindre apparently no one has ever asked for them!

I explained that I wanted to put them onto my blog so that people could see exactly what I am talking about – it is easy to put ‘similar’ examples from medical texts and the internet up but I thought my own would be more informative.

She has promised to give Neville Hall in Abergavenny, who hold the CT Scan, a call and Janet at The Royal Gwent in Newport who have the bone scan also to ensure there are no protocol problems.

Janet has already told me there are no problems fr4om her end – after 13 years dealing with me she has got used to me having odd requests 😉

just as that call finished Lee returned with her tales of woe and confussion from pharmacy where every muddle conceivable seemed to be taking place with quite ill people waiting for an age before they could start their journeys home.

Whilst Lee told me of pharmacy the nurse washed out the vein with saline and disconnected me removing the cannula.

Free to go!

Although the treatment took quite a while – well from about 11:00hrs to gone 15:30hrs. there were no glitches.

Well that was my third visit to velindre and my second chemo over and I really must comment just how cheery the staff are – neither Lee nor I have run into a single staff member who hasn’t been prepared to go that extra 9 yards to help. Not knowing our way around the hospital every time you ask for directions they don’t just point nebulously and send you on your way they always lead you to the next junction and show you which corridor to take, with a smile.

So very much better than hospitals like The Gwent which have become huge, impersonal, intimidating and not to mention filthy!

On the way home we stopped off at Boots pharmacy in Chepstow where they had been unable to fill one of my prescriptions before we left this morning, we stopped off for a bit of shopping and I parked the car and by the time I had sat down for a coffe I was on the verge of nodding off again!!

I am increasingly noticing waves of tiredness – fortunately Lee and I have no consequential time commitments other than the regular hospital visits so I tend to sleep if I need to.

I just want to say sorry for copping out at times and leaving Lee and friends to cope!
Any help and support YOU can give her will be hugely welcome.
I do make a lousy patient!

.
If YOU want to follow my fight against Cancer from when it started and I first presented with symptoms see The TAB just below the Header of this Blog. called >DIARY of Cancer< just click and it will give you a long list of the main events in chronological order.
.
Thoughts and comments will be in chronological order in the main blog and can be tracked in the >ARCHIVE< in the Right Sidebar.

You may find the TABS >MEDICAL LINKS< and also >CANCER LINKS< of help.
.
YOU are welcome to call me if you believe I can help in ANY way.
.

Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins
tel: 01291 – 62 65 62
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27-Apr-2011 – 11:00hrs. Velindre FOR FULL BLOODS!

27-Apr-2011 – 11:00hrs. Velindre FOR FULL BLOODS!

Giant Platelets on a blood smear (40x).Image of Platelets (purple) via Wikipedia

Hi,

well it was schlep off to Velindre – initially I thought at a sensible time!Well I suppose most people are OK with mornings but I tend to write at night once the phone has died down so I am not very good on mornings!

The appointment for today started out as chemo at 15:00hrs. which seemed perfectly reasonable – no rush to get up, a leisurely shower and when we got around to it a gentle putter down the M4 – OK 32  miles is no big deal but when you start the day feeling dead headed any effort isd so much easier to put off!

Anyway I have to be there at 11:00hrs. for bloods – YES it does take best part of an hour to have them done and then have a coffee whilst we wait, in the canteen (praise be it is very good coffee).

Then saunter over to The CDU cardboard box and check in with the staff to be sure the results are through so we are now running at about 12:00hrs.

No problems as I gather all my various blood checks are seemingly OK – Woopy firstly I have it confirmed they haven’t killed me yet with this toxin they are poring into me – SECONDLY I can have my next dose of chemo. I have this, sadly all too rational fear that they may say – Sorry the response on the bloods, or what ever, is wrong we have to stop the chemo!

I wonder if that would be a death sentence!!

Well I’m OK this time although the platelet count is a bit low [Platelets, or thrombocytes (from Greek θρόμβος, “clot” and κύτος, “cell”)] – so Lee and I decide to have lunch whilst we wait for the chemo to be made up to the right dose for me in the Pharmacy.

Lunch was actually very good value although eating anything is becoming ever more of an eye watering experience due to the increasingly sore mouth ulcers which are well under way – particularly inside lower lip, inside lower jaw and on either side of my tongue and across the back of the tongue.

I gather this is all part of the fun of chemo! FOR SOME PEOPLE.

Please don’t think that if you have been prescribed chemo your symptoms will be the same as mine:
FIRSTLY:
There are many types of chemo and they come in different dosages.
SECONDLY:
Chemo is NOT an exact science and everyone seemingly reacts differently to the drug and the dosage.

So I may well have mouth ulcers whilst another person has hair loss, headaches or nose bleed.

I gather nausea is fairly standard but I’ve avoided that SO FAR and lethargy is also standard – which explains my feeling tired.

Lunch for me was a generous prawn salad (COOL & just about swallowable!) Lee had an equally generous and well filled baggette (I wish, but the crust would have been like a mouth full of razor blades – the salad was sore enough!).

Pleasant as the canteen is and friendly as the staff and other diners are it is not somewhere I would by choice spend almost 3 hours trying to pass the time!

Well its just gone 14:00hrs so back to CDU.

I just want to say sorry for copping out at times and leaving Lee and friends to cope!
Any help and support YOU can give her will be hugely welcome.
I do make a lousy patient!

.
If YOU want to follow my fight against Cancer from when it started and I first presented with symptoms see The TAB just below the Header of this Blog. called >DIARY of Cancer< just click and it will give you a long list of the main events in chronological order.
.
Thoughts and comments will be in chronological order in the main blog and can be tracked in the >ARCHIVE< in the Right Sidebar.

You may find the TABS >MEDICAL LINKS< and also >CANCER LINKS< of help.
.
YOU are welcome to call me if you believe I can help in ANY way.
.

Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins
tel: 01291 – 62 65 62