Thursday September 25, 2014 – 313 days after leukemia diagnosis – Pre-transplant
Today we met with some of the transplant team at the Ottawa hospital and Dr. Bredeson, a second specialist (and third oncologist/haematologist) who confirmed that he also believed it was absolutely necessary for Kevin to have the stem cell transplant because his CML is definitely changing and not responding to the TKIs. Because we have been through Kingston, then Toronto and now Ottawa, they were not able to tell us if they found a donor match yet. Because the search was started in Toronto, they need to have it transferred to Ottawa and they needed to wait until they met with Kevin today to proceed with that process. So we should know in a week or so if there is a match.
Dr. Bredeson is absolutely AWESOME. He did tell us about all the risks, but he didn’t talk numbers or percentages (because everyone is different) and he totally made Kevin feel like he can survive this. The difference between the way Kevin felt about everything yesterday and then today is like night and day. Ottawa also does most of the procedure on an outpatient basis as much as possible. As long as Kevin feels up to it and they feel he is safe to do so, he goes home (to our rental in Ottawa) and then goes back to the hospital every day for 4 weeks. Then we are in Ottawa for another 3 months, so 4 months all together. They have discovered that people recover better with this outpatient program, when the patient resumes regular daily activities rather than laying in a bed most of the day. I am on board with that, so is Kevin.
So that is all we know right now. The transplant should happen in about 2 months, providing a match is found and processed successfully.So keep your fingers crossed!!
There are many preliminary medical tests that Kevin will have to go through prior to the transplant and they will all be done here in Kingston. (Thank heavens!) We are in for a tough go and it will be the hardest thing Kevin has ever done…BUT we are blessed with so much amazing support, which is half the battle in these situations. I have faith that it will all be totally worth it and Kevin will be leukemia FREE after all is said and done! That’s the plan! =)
SO EVERYONE… if you can… please go to your local Blood Services and donate blood AND please consider getting swabbed and getting your name on the bone marrow/stem cell donor list!! It can save someone’s life! =)