Monday, April 16, 2012

Last Cycle

Tomorrow I start up with chemo again. This week it is Tuesday and Friday, and next week also Tuesday and Friday. This week's chemo includes Treanda. That's the heavy hitter. It's the drug that finally allowed us to get control of the myeloma. After this cycle, I move to maintenance. I'm not sure exactly what the maintenance process includes. But I do know I still do some chemo, but it's less intense and maybe less often. And I'll be taking some stuff at home. And no Treanda.

So it's all good. I'm feeling super good, my numbers are still improving and moving to maintenance obviously means I am doing better. Great right?

But going off of Treanda and onto maintenance also makes me nervous. It took so long to find a drug that works, that going away from it makes me a little paranoid. Some of my anxiety has to with my personality. I'm a creature of habit, I like schedules or routines and I see most things only in black and white. It's hard for me to see the gray areas or the midpoint.   So going off of Treanda and onto maintenance is totally breaking my routine and putting me in a gray area. 

If I wear a certain shirt while watching the Vikings and they win, I absolutely will wear the same shirt the next week.  If I am going to ride my bike, I either train for a 100 mile ride, ride to work every day and so on. It's hard for me to just say I'll ride occasionally. And I've had to train myself to not obsess over my numbers.  One single number can impact my entire week. Thus I say  if I am going to treat myeloma, let's treat myeloma. Ask Dr Phan about my reaction when I've had to delay treatment for a couple of days. I hate it. I can't miss a cycle. Or ask Leslie how worried I get over one lab result that has one number that is a smidgen worse.

The problem with Treanda is that it's tough on the body. I might feel great, but it's beating up my innards. I am doing great and have had a lot of Treanda. Hence maintenance.

Don't get me wrong. I am super happy with how I am doing and excited to be transitioning. But the nerves do creep in.


  1. This is a huge milestone, Unc! Remember that Treanda will still be an option on the back burner even during maintance. You have accomplished so much in such a short time. This is truly amazing. :)

  2. Lord know's I too have been used to a tight regimend, and feel very weird not having a regular job, & routine to tend to. I do relate to what your saying.. I recpect you as my mentor!!! Life throws us a ball we were not expecting, nor thought would ever come our way. The lesson learned? Go with the flow, and enjoy every day to the fullest, then deal with such things that "come our way". Dana


Berenson Oncology Success Rate

 Some reading about my myeloma specialist's success rate. A press release and an article from Targeted Oncology.