Relapse Journey

Day 120: Pre-B ALL, Standard Relapse

Team Bella is feeling both excited & nervous as we head into BMT. This week has been hectic with the requirement to go through all relevant tests again prior to going into BMT.

Tue this week, we completed an ECG, ECHO & Respiratory function tests. Bella’s results were good! 👍

As her donor, I needed to have full bloods done again (Bella’s oncologist had changed her transplant date to 3/8/17). These tests would ensure I was healthy & it would be safe for Peter Mac to harvest my stem cells for Bella on 1/8/17.

CT (computed tomography scan): We went downstairs to medical imaging where the nurses canulated her arm so the radiographer could infuse contrast into her peripheral line. I also had to aspirate 160ml of contrast down her NG tube. The contrast allows her entire body to light up. Detailed images of internal organs are obtained by this type of X-ray device. The CT scan can reveal anatomic details of internal organs that cannot be seen in conventional X-rays.

Our oncologist was very pleased with Bella’s progress following 6 days at home. She commended Bella on her weight gain, & Bella’s physical & mental health had improved greatly compared to when she was in hospital. Home=best medicine 😁. Great job Team Bella!

I consciously kept her feeds high & continous in an effort to increase her weight.😊 She does not eat well during treatment as chemo & a deconditioned body can cause loss of appetite. Food often has a metallic taste 😝

Any major medical procedure (in Bella’s case under-going an organ transplant & inheriting new marrow courtesy of mum’s stem cells), mortality is heightened when the patient is either very underweight or obese. Bella is significantly underweight. 😔 Today she weighed 16.6kg (after she opened her bowels! Yay! Mum did the poop dance this morning 😂😂)

We are now in theatre after a 2.5hr wait 😫 Bella has gone under GA (general anaesthesia) so the doctors can perform a BMA as our oncologist wanted to review her marrow. It will be interesting to see what her MRD (Minimum residual disease) result is considering we last had chemo in mid June.

Count down to transplant is on! 4 more sleeps! Next Monday Bella will be admitted into transplant ward. She will be in isolation (remains in her transplant room) until her marrow has engrafted….it generally takes 6-8 weeks, but each patient is different 😉.

Team Bella: Excited about Bella’s new healthy marrow…& nervous heading into transplant but we will Never give up! 😊💪👊👍

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