Chemo day 2, volume turned to 11.5 !

Hey all!  I guess this is my inaugural post here at the blog.  Really, this is my first blog of any substance – so bear with me if I’m a bit clunky at first.

Today’s chemo went quite a bit faster than yesterday, even with the introduction of my third drug (Bleomycin), which took an extra half hour.  When they started me out yesterday, it was at a rate of around 500ml/hour.  Throughout the day as I was able to handle the dosages, they moved me up to 600ml, then 800ml/hour.  After I woke up from a nap in the afternoon, I noticed it’d been moved to 1000ml/hour, and the pump was noisier (and angrier) than it’d been all day.

Today, they moved me to a two pump system, and had one dedicated to saline, while the other was dedicated to the revolving tray of drugs.  The saline was running almost all day at a constant 550ml/hour, and the drugs were switched in and out running at 600ml/hour.

Combined volume:  1150ml/hour

Before starting me on the actual chemo drugs, they also give me a couple anti-nausea drugs and a steroid – each of which comes in a bag of fluid that’s between ~200ml and ~500ml.  The chemo drugs Cisplatinum (yes, made with real platinum!  heavy metals administered directly to the heart is the straight dope!) and Etoposide (aka “VP-16“, which sounds like a Nazi mind control drug or something) are in 500ml bags except the Bleo, which is 200ml (quick!).

Anyway, the whole process has been interesting (from a scientific “I’m learning new things” point of view), terrifying (from a “2 years ago my mom was also just starting chemo, and didn’t make it” point of view), and also reassuring (from a “will you just look how many damn people care about me!” point of view).  So far, it hasn’t been terribly bad physically – though I’m still pretty sure that’s going to get worse.  Yesterday evening, I had some mild nausea, but didn’t vomit or anything – just feeling really off, and in a completely unfamiliar way.  It didn’t start until after 6:30 yesterday, but I think I’m already starting to feel it today.  I’ve also had a low grade headache since yesterday.  Really, I had one all weekend from the anxiety, but this is also… different than a “usual” headache.  Thankfully so far, it is just sitting around in the back of my head, annoying me with its persistence and  reluctance to die down – but it isn’t a bad headache – it doesn’t really hurt – just annoying… all… the… time.

On that note, I’m going to stop rambling and try to relax.  More later, and thanks for reading!

– C