Sunday, January 30, 2011

12-Month Transplant Checkup

Wow. I knew it has been awhile since I updated this blog, but I didn't realize that it has been more than two months. That's good news though, really, because nothing exciting enough to report has occurred since then, and on this blog, excitement equates to trouble.

We traveled to Johns Hopkins on January 13 for my (somewhat overdue) 12-month transplant checkup. I have now obtained the bone marrow biopsy results, which the Hopkins oncologist describes as "awesome". The bottom line: "No evidence of myeloma".

After the tests were done, before we departed for home, I was given the first installment of my childhood immunizations. As you may recall, the transplant destroyed my existing immune system, replacing it with a brand new one more closely resembling the one I was born with. So for the past year I have been vulnerable to many diseases most adults have long since forgotten about, such as polio, diphtheria and tetanus. I received five injections, vaccinating me against the diseases just mentioned, plus hepatitis B, meningitis, and a couple of other less well known ones.

I will need boosters for all of these in March, but there should be no need to travel to Baltimore to get them; I'm guessing I will be able to get them all at Christiana. If so then I will not need to return to Hopkins until my 24-month transplant checkup, which I believe will be the last.

Meanwhile, there is just not much to say about my work experience of the past three months. It can only be described as "uneventful", which is of course blog poison. The days do drag out because of my need to take breaks, but I do not seem to be suffering much additional pain, knock wood. As for chemo brain effects, I don't see much that has happened that could be ascribed to anything like that. But maybe I have just forgotten all about it already.