Wow. Have I been naive about chemotherapy. I thought I was reading a lot of stuff and I’d be prepared but … FAIL.

Today Mina was clearly suffering just about every side effect from Vincristine that she could have. Lethargy? Check. Depressed Attitude? Check. Nausea/Drooling? Check. Vomiting? Check. Check. Check. Check. Check. Diarrhea? No.

All of Mina’s caregivers reported that she seemed sad and tired, but she was still eating like a champ. That continued even after I got home. About an hour and a half after she had dinner, she started vomiting. All over the place. I called VIMP, talked to her LVT, Christy, and we gave her a dose of the Metoclopramide. She threw it up. Dr. Chiapella was there and directed Christy to tell me to get Mina to the e-vet.

When we got there, Mina’s records were there, Dr. Smith was ready to see her and we got started. She threw up two more times in the exam room. This is the second time Mina’s seen Dr. Smith and I’m almost starting to like him. He needs just a little work on his bedside manner, but he’s very smart.

So, he told me they were going to take blood for a CBC, test some puke for alkalinity, give her subcutaneous fluids and inject meds for her stomach. He made sure his techs knew to do all of this in the exam room where I could watch and ask questions. I like that.

Long story short … it’s not all bad news. Yes, Mina had a bad reaction to the Vincristine IV she had last Thursday. This means we will not be giving her the next drug in the protocol this Thursday … but she will still see Dr. Chiapella and get a full physical exam and another CBC. Then we’ll set a date for the Cytoxan round.

The good news:

  • Her lymph nodes have shrunken further. Dr. Smith insisted that I feel them myself and I am amazed. They really are smaller. A lot smaller.
  • She gained a pound!
  • She’s no longer anemic! I am going to hug Dr. Cliver so hard for recommending potatoes to add carbs to Mina’s diet for the anemia.
  • Her white cell count dropped from 17,000 to 9,000!

I must thank him publicly for making sure that I know that good things are happening with Mina’s cancer, and that this is going to be a very long, very hard road.

Tonight, I’ll sleep on the couch near Mina and tomorrow we’ll fetch my laptop from work and I’ll stay home with her. Please, please feel free to remind me that there are other things going on in the world that need my attention. I feel a great need to not always be in the cancer ward, y’know? I think that helps Mina, too.

s.

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