Category Archives: Health Update

Happy Birthday Deb!

Happy Birthday to my beautiful daughter Deb! I am thankful to have you as my daughter, and so proud of you and all you have accomplished.  I am amazed at how you have remained so positive these past eight months … Continue reading

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The Ups and Downs of Recovery

Sunday morning, May 25, Deb woke up with a queasy stomach.  She didn’t have much appetite and couldn’t finish her breakfast, which is usually a fairly substantial meal for her.  Andy was here, and they had planned to go to … Continue reading

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A Special Birthday with my Girls and a Successful Benefit for Deb

This is Mary Lou again – Deb has been posting such great blogs that I was able to take a break from writing for a while.  Thank you, Deb, for your lovely tribute to me for Mother’s Day.  I am … Continue reading

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Stem Cell or Bone Marrow Transplant – what’s the difference?

Deb is doing well.  She is now Day +38 and her energy level is better.  She is not napping as much as she was in the beginning.  Her rash from the Graft vs Host Disease (GVHD) is almost gone, but … Continue reading

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A little bump in the road

Happy Easter everyone!  It’s another lovely sunny day in Stanford.  Since we’ve been here, day after day has been beautiful and cloudless, one of the things that people love so much about California … unless, that is, you cannot be … Continue reading

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What a difference a week makes!

This is Deb’s Mom again, Mary Lou, and I am happy to say that Deb is improving a little every day.  It’s truly amazing when I think of Deb’s anonymous donor, a 32 year old man from Europe, whose blood-making … Continue reading

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Settling into the townhouse

Today is Day +25 since Deb’s stem cell transplant – she is a quarter of the way through the 100 days that she is required to wear the HEPA mask whenever she goes outside.  The mask is bulky and uncomfortable, … Continue reading

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Breaking out of the hospital …

I am happy to say that Deb was discharged from Stanford Hospital late Tuesday afternoon.  She was so glad to come to the lovely townhouse we are renting, and not be disturbed with beeps, taking vitals every 4 hours, etc.  … Continue reading

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Looking ahead to discharge

It’s hard to believe, but we are actually starting to talk about when Deb will be discharged from the hospital!  The doctors had said she would improve quickly when her white blood counts came up, and so it is.  However … Continue reading

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Day +14 = Engraftment!

We were thrilled this evening when Deb’s blood counts came in and we learned that engraftment has started!  (Engraftment is when the stem cells she received from her donor start growing and developing, and her bone marrow and immune system … Continue reading

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Day +11 (Sunday)

Despite the pain and other side effects that Deb has suffered, the doctors and nurses continue to tell us that she is doing really well.  The side effects are to be expected, and mean that the treatments are working as … Continue reading

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Day +8 after Stem Cell Transplant

Thursday was Day +8.  Deb’s doctor had told her that this process would be tough, and he’s right, it is.  Deb had a rough night Wednesday night, not much sleep.  Her platelets were down to 6 so she had a … Continue reading

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Day +5 (Monday) – Getting through the tough period

The worst days after transplant are Day +4 to Day +14.  Side effects from the heavy doses of chemotherapy are starting to occur.  Deb is also on two medications to help prevent Graft vs Host Disease (GVHD), and these cause … Continue reading

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Transfusion time

Deb is now at Day +3 (Saturday) and in the recovery stage, which begins after the stem cell infusion.  Her blood counts have dropped as her existing cells are dying off and her body is not yet making new cells.  … Continue reading

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Two thumbs up!

Today was an intense, emotional and wonderful day.  Deb began receiving her donor’s stem cells at 1:23 pm PDT, and the infusion lasted just under an hour.  Andy and I were present along with three of Deb’s closest friends.  We … Continue reading

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March 19 – Deb’s new birthday

March 19 is Day 0, which is often referred to as a new birthday for bone marrow transplant patients.  All that we know about Deb’s donor is that he is 32, a male, and international.  Well, I guess we do … Continue reading

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2nd Chemo Drug and Clinical Trial for GVHD

On Sunday Deb began to receive her second chemo drug, Cytoxan, which is given on Day -3 and Day -2.  This is a strong chemo drug, and Deb was feeling tired and out of it all day.  Saturday we took … Continue reading

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Day Minus 4 (Day -4)

The day Deb receives her stem cell transplant is referred to as Day Zero (Day 0).  The days prior to Day 0 are “minus” days, and these are the days when the preparative regimen is given to prepare the body … Continue reading

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Moving Day

Hi, this is Mary Lou (Deb’s Mom).  Yesterday Deb and I moved out of the hotel where we stayed for Deb’s outpatient procedures.  Deb was admitted to the hospital, and I have rented an apartment in the HOME Apartments, which … Continue reading

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Stanford Cancer Center – Prologue

Deb and I spent Wednesday and Thursday at Stanford Cancer Center for pre-admission appointments.  Deb and Andy had been here several times already, but this was my first visit, and my first opportunity to meet Deb’s bone marrow transplant doctor, … Continue reading

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