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August 27, 2003


Good evening! I just got home from the Hospital. You will notice the somewhat eye popping changes to my lab results. below. That made for a very boring day. In addition to the numbers below, my Potassium and Magnesium levels were low. The potassium levels were way low! They decided to give me 8 one hour doses of potassium. They have to drip it slowly because it can cause heart problems if fed too quickly. In addition, I now have these monstrous horse pills of potassium to take every day. In addition, I also got a platelet transfusion and a dose of magnesium. The lab results I got didn't even have the platelet levels on them, because they couldn't believe it. It was 2! This morning before going to the hospital, I was playing with the dogs, and ended up with bruises wherever they touched me. I also have some rashes on my ankles as a result of the low platelets. I am still feeling real good. I was worried that the chemo wasn't working, because I felt so good! I guess the really good news is that I really feel good and the chemo is working. I am now severely neutropenic now, so we have to be very careful with contact with other people and what I eat. They want me to come back for more lab work on Friday. I get tomorrow off.

Just to recap the last week, Menchie and I went to Sea World on Thursday. We really enjoyed it, but Menchie got a real workout pushing me around in a wheel chair. I helped out as much as I could. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, we were busy with errands and shopping, so I was pretty worn out. This week, we stayed at home most of the time, except for a few errands. Well actually, I dropped in to work on Monday to take care of some things and get a file I needed. I got a wonderful welcome! Thanks guys!! They had a picnic this afternoon, that I was hoping to get to, but my potassium count scratched that idea.

I would like to pay a special tribute to a most important person in my life. That would be Menchie. She has been absolutely amazing through all of this. She laughs with me in the happy times, and cries with me when I get depressed. She is always by my side, doing whatever it takes to take care of me! She changes my dressings, washes my clothes, cooks and cleans for me, she shops for me, and makes sure I get all my medications on time. She makes me eat the right things, and helps me with the computer work of writing and posting these updates. Those and a million other things. She was even there for me to hug as I passed out in the hospital (fortunately, I was sitting down). She has the hardest job of all. She has to choke down her fears and tears and be strong for me, even though she doesn't know for sure how I am feeling at any time, nor what the future will bring. As hard as all this is for me, it would be an order of magnitude harder if it wasn't for Menchie. She is the greatest! I couldn't do this without her! Thanks, my dear Menchie!

On the medical front, lots of new developments! Of course, the lab results tell a lot of the story. The doctor has given me a daily dose of potassium as I mentioned before. I am also starting prophylactic antibiotics today. They are Levaquin for bacterial infections, and Difloucan for yeast or fungal infections. I already mentioned the platelet level of 2. I have never seen it out of double or triple digits before. I would guess I will get a platelet and an RBC transfusion on Friday. My WBC count is way down where we want it to be. Now we wait for me to recover again and start over with another course of consolidation chemo.

Lab Results

Blood Cell Type

Normal Low




WBC 4.5 3.3 2.0 0.4
RBC 4.30 3.10 2.80 2.51
HGB 13.9 10.4 9.5 8.2
PLT 130 168 138 002

Until Friday!


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