Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Adrienne is doing well after her last chemo. Tomorrow is her PET scan and Thursday is her CT. Luckily both scans are in the morning because she can't eat before either one. The tests aren't too unpleasant either (easy for me to say). Adrienne always looks so tiny in those big scanning machines.

Here's some pictures from her graduation:

And here's Adrienne with Giada di Laurentiis from the Food Network at her book signing in Los Gatos:

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

10th Chemo

Adrienne had her 10th chemo yesterday, just two more to go. She felt pretty awful yesterday afterwards and ran a low grade fever last night. This morning, she has no fever but is feeling pretty "yucky." The side effects get worse with each chemo so she's happy to be almost finished.

Adrienne had one of her favorite nurses yesterday. Jessica has been studying for her masters degree in nursing and working only on Fridays. She just finished school so she's working other days now too until September, when she has a baby. She's a tiny little girl, a full five inches shorter than Adrienne, and she's always been so nice to Adrienne. We were happy to see her back.

We've had a bit of trouble scheduling the next few weeks but things seem to be working out now. Adrienne's doctor will be on vacation when she has her scans and her next chemo wasn't scheduled until we get the results. Yesterday, he agreed that we should go ahead and schedule the last two chemos and we'll talk when he gets back. Generally, I don't like to wait for test results and he's really good about calling me as soon as the results are ready.

After a small amount of hassle, Adrienne is now set with a doctor at City of Hope when she goes to college. I had spoken with them in 2002 before we decided to go to Seattle so they already had most of her records and history. When I spoke with the nurse practioner there and mentioned that Adrienne was going to CMC, she said "congratulations" enthusiastically. Adrienne's doc talked with the doc there, who said "wow, she must be really smart to be going to CMC." We all knew that. Just to give you an idea, CMC received nearly 4,000 applications for 270 freshman openings and gives just 30 of the McKenna Achievement Awards, which Adrienne won.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Feeling Better

Adrienne is finally feeling better after her chemo and then being sick with a virus. She had some small fevers after the ER visit on Saturday but none for several days. She's still suffering some cold symptoms but nothing severe. Scans (CT with contrast and PET/CT) are scheduled for the last week in June. Please think positive thoughts.

Adrienne is all scheduled for her donor lymphocyte infusion on or around July 26. On July 5, she and Daniel will have their workup including extensive blood tests. Daniel will donate the cells on July 25. He is quite nervous about the donation since he had a difficult time giving stem cells, but they promise that this is much easier. The biggest obstacle is that he has tiny veins so he required a catheter last time. We hope to avoid that this time.

On July 8, Adrienne and I are going to take a visit to French Canada, Montreal and Quebec. Daniel has work and school during that time, and Curt is busy with his new business so they can't join us. Adrienne will need to stay around here between the DLI and going off to college, so that is the last time we can get away. Luckily, we have lots of frequent flyer miles and hotel points, making the airfare and hotel free for this trip.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Graduation and Sick!

Adrienne's graduation went off without a hitch. Thank you to everyone who came to share this special event with her, both at the commencement and at the party afterwards. This was such an important day for Adrienne and our family because we are thankful for each day she is with us.

Adrienne was sick from her chemo all week but was feeling better on Friday just in time for graduation. However, Friday night she started a fever. By Saturday afternoon, it was up to 101.7 so we were off to the emergency room at Stanford. When we arrived, her temp had spiked to 103.2. After three hours (the shortest time we ever spent there), we found that Adrienne's counts were good so we got to come back home. When you get chemo, your white count can drop dramatically, making you at risk for overwhelming infection. Since Adrienne's white count was good, she's not at risk so she doesn't need to be in the hospital. Before we went, we packed an overnight bag, our insurance that she wouldn't need to stay. It seems that if we don't plan to stay and don't pack a bag, that's when she's admitted. It might sound silly but so far it hasn't done us wrong.

We are looking forward to a quiet day at home today. Adrienne still isn't feeling well but her fevers are under control. Daniel is at football camp until tomorrow night. Now we just need to relax from all the excitement.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Tougher Chemo

Adrienne had her 9th chemo yesterday. About a half hour after the infusion of the first drug (gemcitabine) started, I noticed that it was running really slowly so I asked the nurse. Apparently, Adrienne's nurse practioner wrote the orders wrong so the chemo ran over one hour rather than the usual half hour. The day hospital nurse called the attending on call who said it was okay to run the chemo over one hour but after that, the drug loses its effectiveness. I sent a message last night to Adrienne's doc to let him know that I'm really unhappy with what happened. This is not the first time we've had problems with this nurse practioner, who often writes orders incorrectly, doesn't return phone calls, and so on. Over the years, Adrienne has had many nurse practioners and other professionals care for her, and we've never had a problem until this particular person, and now it seems to be one thing after another.

Adrienne is feeling particularly bad from yesterday's infusion, maybe because it ran over a longer time. She was very nauseated last night, needing Zofran, Benadryl, and Ativan to get the nausea under control. She feels pretty bad this morning too. Luckily, we rescheduled her finals so she has no exams today or tomorrow.

On Sunday, I did the San Diego Rock 'n Roll marathon. I'm tired but luckily my feet held up really well, with only a couple of small blisters. As I was getting ready to fly home yesterday morning, Daniel called on my cell phone with extreme stomach pain. He'd been to the doctor the previous Friday for continuing stomach pain and fatigue. His blood work this weekend was normal. He is having a few upper GI tests this week, but the doctor thinks this is stress related, real pain brought on by stress. Daniel is drinking Pepto like it's going out of style so hopefully this will resolve soon. He is supposed to go to football camp on Saturday and he is really looking forward to it.

Adrienne's graduation is this Friday. We are SOOOO excited.