Today is DAY +82 and today is brought to you by the letter “U”… No, not because the letter “U” rhymes with “82”! (heheh) The letter “U” for UNDETECTABLE!!!
You read that right… Kevin finally heard the WORD he has been waiting to hear since November 17, 2013. The first post-transplant PCR test results are in and the CML (Chronic Myeloid Leukemia) is UNDETECTABLE!! When the doctor told us the results, we both felt overwhelmed with so much emotion that we didn’t even react that much! It was kinda anticlimactic to be honest. Of course we were happy, but I looked at him, he looked at me… he looked like he was going to cry and I felt like I was going to start crying so we both kinda just said “Yay… that’s awesome…”. It was a surreal moment let me tell ya, but it’s sinking in now! It’s real! It’s really real! (Don’t tell the Diabetic Nurse that he celebrated with a giant Dairy Queen BLIZZARD!) LOL
This is amazing, excellent, awesome news and it makes all of the GvHD complications that Kevin has been struggling with worth it. Essentially, it means that the donor cells have decided to become aggressive and attack Kevin’s organs, BUT at the same time, they have destroyed any remaining leukemia that the high-dose chemotherapy may not have destroyed. The doctors refer to this as the “GvL” Graft versus Leukemia effect and it is the ONE benefit of Graft versus Host Disease. Does this mean that Kevin’s leukemia will NEVER relapse? No, unfortunately there are never any guarantees. However, it is a very good step in the right direction and an excellent indication that there is a good chance that the CML will be gone for good! The next PCR test will be done at the end or July/ beginning of August, but I’m sure the results will be just as awesome!
Having said all that, Kevin still has a very long road to full recovery ahead of him. However, the doctors were satisfied with his skin and liver progress today and they reduced the Prednisone another 15mg. So he is now taking 60mg/day instead of 75mg/day. They also graduated him from every week appointments to every two weeks, providing he remains stable.
He is still dealing with diabetes complications, some pretty horrible fluid retention (he’s gained over 20lbs), muscle weakness and fatigue. He is still at high risk for many different viral, bacterial and fungal infections and must avoid public places and any one who is sick. He is still at risk for GvHD complications. He is still taking WAY TOO MANY different drugs that he will eventually need to be weaned from…. BUT TODAY HE IS CANCER FREE!! TODAY he has beat LEUKEMIA!! I’m hoping that the awesomeness of the news we got today will help him get through the next few months STRONGER and more positive than ever. No matter what, hope, positivity, gratitude, humor and the love and support from our family and friends will continue to be the foundation of every single day.
Kevin has a bone density test to see how his bones are dealing with all this insanity his body is going through on Thursday. The main worry is that the Prednisone is wreaking havoc on his poor bones…. another complication that can happen. Complication scomplication… I say he’s gonna beat them all! =)
Until next update, we hope that all is awesome with you and yours! xoxo Thanks for stopping by!!!