Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A new era

I am so sorry it's been so long. I thought I had made an entry last week when Glenn  saw the nephrologist and oncologist. Sorry.
The neph. basically said it's time for dialysis. We'll be seeing him once a month now. The oncologist was going to start Glenn on a maintenance chemo schedule but Glenn wasn't feeling well that day so he decided to wait a couple weeks and give him some more time to heal from the surgery. So we go back in a week to start on that. It will be pills every other day. I'm curious/concerned to see what kind of effect this new chemo will have on him. It's good he's had this time off of chemo for a while. The oncologist gave us a good report of the bone marrow biopsy. He says that Glenn is close to remission. One of the numbers needs to come down some more. Oh, I should also tell you that the oncologist said that if Glenn can go into remission and stay that way he can be eligible for a kidney transplant. That's the first time he's ever given Glenn hope for a transplant. The disease he has would attack a new kidney so that's why he hasn't been eligible for a transplant until now. Well, not now, but there's hope for that now.
Today Glenn had his first peritoneal dialysis training. He had one cycle. It is basically filling the abdomen with a fluid that will draw out the waste in the blood that the kidneys can't now. That stays in for a few hours, then he empties that and fills again. Right now he will be doing that 4 times a day. After about a month he will be able to do night dialysis where a machine does it for him while he sleeps. That way he has his days open. We are looking forward to when it starts helping him feel better. I don't know, yet, what kind of effect the dialysis will have on the chemo, or the chemo on dialysis. Tomorrow we go back again for more training, and again the next day. After that, we are on our own. Glenn was extremely apprehensive about today, understandably. But he did real well and did all the steps the nurse showed him to do. I was quite surprised because I thought he would  want me to learn it and eventually teach him, but the nurse gave the instructions directly to him and he took it on. The only thing that really bothers him still is having that tube sticking out of his abdomen. Doing the procedure didn't seem to bother him. He hasn't been able to take a real shower since the surgery, but in about a week or so he will get to again. The surgery sites have to heal completely first.
Going through today really wore us both out. Glenn's was mostly from being so tense about dialysis starting today. Mine was probably from being anxious for him. And there was a lot of learning we had to do and that in itself is exhausting. All that is to say that I'm going to bed now!

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