Yes, John and I are home from Hershey Medical Center, where we went to visit his oncologist.
So let me tell you what's up with John.
Two things. On Sunday night, the night before we went to Hershey, John slipped in the shower. He banged his head on the edge of the tub. I had to take him to the Emergency Room. They gave him a CAT scan to see if he had internal bleeding, and said he did not. Then the physician took the gash in his scalp and glued it back together. I didn't know they could glue instead of doing stitches nowadays!
At any rate, right now, after a week, John is still in very severe pain (his head and neck). So this afternoon he called the local doctor on call. The doctor said there is a chance that John could now be bleeding internally, and told us to call his primary care doctor tomorrow (Monday) and see if he wants to do an MRI.
Perhaps all John has is whiplash, but if it is, it is of a most severe case. He has trouble every day, has to lay around a lot, and can never stay up after 4 pm. He has to lay down and go to sleep. He says his neck feels wrenched.
Okay, here's the second thing that is going on with John.
First let me say that his cancers are NOT back. He still remains cancerfree.
But there is something wrong. His hemoglobin count is dropping dramatically. This means his Hemolytic Anemia may be coming back. I wanted to explain these terms to my new readers, but I am just too exhausted. I will just put it this way, my dear readers. After my husband John had two cancers, then the bone marrow transplant that put the cancers in remission, he developed a disease called Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia (AIHA). His oncologist doesn't know what caused it, but thinks it was perhaps a medication that was given after the bone marrow transplant.
Okay, I'll explain quickly what Hemolytic Anemia is. It's anemia caused by excessive destruction of red blood cells. That's a fancy way of saying that your red blood cells are destroyed in your body at a very fast pace. If I remember correctly, a red blood cell is made and then lives 120 days. John's were made and then dying in 1 day instead of 120. That is why John had to have over 100 transfusions (bags of blood - red blood cells really) in a few short months. His blood cells were dying and they had to be replaced immediately or he wouldn't have enough and he would die.
After several months John got much better and needed fewer and fewer units (bags) of blood. He appeared to be cured of the Hemolytic Anemia. That was after lots of chemo treatments to attempt to cure it. When John first had the AIHA he needed 7 units of blood a day at first (this took all day and most of the night), and then ended up needing less and less blood, until he appeared cured. He had his last two bags this past November.
Okay, here is the part I wanted to tell you all. His hemoglobin won't come up at this time. As a matter of fact, it has been pretty low since the last transfusion. It has only artificially been raised by Aranesp shots (shots to raise your red blood cell count). What I am getting at here is, there is the possibility that the Hemolytic Anemia never left, or it is back. Which means blood transfusions in John's future. John's Hemolytic Anemia is not real bad at this time. Because John's bilirubin count is okay. But it could get really bad. Right now he is taking these shots to stave the transfusions off. Which may or may not work.
All of this is to say that he may need to start getting blood again. For a little while or for months or years. Who knows?
How is he taking this? In stride. How am I? In stride too. Oh well, life happens. How will I feel if it becomes more of a reality? I don't even want to think about it... But we always manage. We have each other and we have the Lord.
Love you all,