Tuesday, January 10, 2006

going for the hat trick

Day 2 of stem cell harvesting went very well. With the catheter in place, I didn't have any of the problems with my veins like yesterday. Manny connected my catheter up to the apheresis machine's tubing and I was ready to go. The blood flowed smoothly. The collection itself was uneventful. Like yesterday, Manny, the nurses, and I joked around to pass the time. They teased me and I teased them. We played tit for tat throughout the day. He even took a couple of snapshots of me hooked up to the apheresis machine. I hope to upload these photographs soon. Manny and his colleagues are very warm and likeable and helped to make what could have been a helplessly boring experience a bit more enjoyable.

After the harvesting was completed, my mom and I ate lunch at a nearby diner before we headed to a satellite facility of the hospital (about 7 blocks away), where I was scheduled for an echocardiogram. The exam lasted for perhaps 30 minutes.

From the satellite facility, we walked back to the hospital seeking to find out if enough stem cells had been collected. If the desired amount of stem cells were harvested during the 2 days of collection, then I wouldn't need to return tomorrow for another day and perhaps my catheter could be removed today or tomorrow. But as it turned out, not enough had been harvested during the past 2 days, so I must go back to the hospital for a third day of collection. I was hoping that this wouldn't happen but it's okay. The most important thing is that the medical staff obtain what they need so that a successful transplant takes place.

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