Wednesday, August 29, 2007

day +8

Everything continues to progress well, which is fantastic but I admit that I've thought at times out of concern that things have gone too well since the transplant last week. Despite my transient concerns, Dr. Koehne and the team are very pleased. There are no signs of GVHD yet. I'm still very, very early in this entire process. Of course, acute GVHD can occur at any point within the first 100 days following transplantation. But GVHD isn't necessarily a bad thing at all. It's a sign that the donor cells are active and working and hopefully, there will be the GVHL effect. A little GVHD is a positive sign, but it's when the GVHD becomes too severe that serious problems can arise. I guess I'm just waiting for the onset of GVHD knowing that it's a sign of engraftment. I'm just eager to know that my donor cells have survived, are well, and are preparing to launch a search-and-destroy mission against those Hodgkin's cells that may have lingered around somewhere.

My WBC shot up to 1.3 today, which Dr. Koehne said is a sign the neupogen is working although the WBC may fluctuate a bit in the coming days. My HGB and platelets went down to 11.6 and 18 respectively. Since my platelets went below 20, I had a transfusion of platelets which went without a hitch. I also received a neupogen injection again this evening.

Since I've been eating regular meals, the team decided to stop the TPN.

Raul stopped by around 11:30 AM and we talked for awhile before his business meeting across town. He let me borrow the first season of 24 on DVD. In the late afternoon, Clare and Su came by for awhile. It was wonderful seeing them after an absence of a couple of days. My parents traveled with my sister to Philadelphia in order to help her unpack for the start of the academic year, but they'll be back late today and Denise plans to stop by at some point tomorrow before she moves in her dorm suite for good later this week.

I received a response from Columbia's Religion program about my inquiry. I'd be able to take elective courses, such as evolution and/or human evolution, offered by the E3B or other courses in the departments of Sociology or Philosophy, for example. But financial aid isn't offered to MA students. Only PhD students in the program receive aid. I e-mailed NYU about its Religious Studies program as well. Hopefully, they offer aid to its MA students.


Comment Blogger Sarah said...

If you're interested in a religious studies MA, you might want to check out Duke, too. I may just be doing a PhD there soon..


10:04 PM  
Comment Anonymous Anonymous said...


Glad to hear things are going well, but go for the PhD, dude. No need for two masters degrees.

Peace (no peace for cancer cells; only death),

11:28 PM  
Comment Blogger Veronica said...

I totally get the whole 'worried cos it's going so well' feeling. Wullie was the same way about his hair........everyone else on the BMT unit had lost all their hair and he held on to his for quite a while.......he was actually relieved when it fell out as it was a sign that the chemo was at least doing something!

Stay strong, Duane, you've quite an army behind you..........x

5:09 PM  
Comment Blogger Duane said...

Thanks for the suggestion about Duke, Sarah. In religion as well?

8:41 PM  
Comment Blogger Duane said...

Hey Asskicker,

Yeah, another MA is something I need to think about a lot. Obviously, cost is a big part of the decision.

Are you back in the US?


8:43 PM  
Comment Blogger Duane said...

Quite an army indeed! I'm very fortunate. Thanks, Veronica.

Wishing you and Wullie all the best,

8:44 PM  
Comment Anonymous Anonymous said...


I think you have me confused with someone else. This is Chris from California; I've always been in the US.


7:27 PM  
Comment Blogger Duane said...

Oh, sorry Chris. Yes, you're right. I was thinking of someone else. Thanks for clarifying.

9:16 PM  

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