Posted by: Jenn | February 15, 2009

Chemo, round 2

(I know this post is late – it’s been a busy week)

 I had my second round of chemotherapy on Monday (2/9).  I’m on a protocol called R-CHOP.  It’s pretty much the standard for the type of non-Hodgkins lymphoma that I have.  I’m really lucky because there doesn’t seem to be much controversy or debate over how to treat my type of lymphoma – the treatment that I’m getting works really well for most cases.  The only debate with lymphoma seems to be deciding what type of lymphoma it actually is (more on this later).

R-CHOP consists of 5 drugs:  R – Rituxan (rituximab), C – Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), H – hydroxydaunorubicin (doxorubicin), O – Oncovin (vincristine), and P – prednisone.  If you’re really interested in learning more about the drugs, there’s a pretty good description at http://www.cancerbackup.org.uk/Treatments/Chemotherapy/Combinationregimen/R-CHOP . 

So far, knock on wood, it’s been pretty easy.  I go to the cancer center every 3 weeks for treatment.  I get a little room with a large window and a bed.  They give me Tylenol and Benadryl before the Rituxan, which makes me a little sleepy, then the Rituxan infuses over a couple of hours.  After that I get Zofran (for nausea) and Decadron (a steroid – also helps with nausea), then the rest of the chemotherapy over a couple of hours.  When all the infusions are done, I get to go home.  I then take prednisone daily for 4 more days.  That’s it.  Sixteen days later, I get to do it all again!  Repeat 6 to 8 times to eradicate lymphoma…

I have not had a single moment of nausea since starting treatment.  Chemotherapy no longer guarantees days of vomiting and weeks of nausea.  It’s pretty amazing the therapies that have been developed to eliminate that side-effect.

I’m going back to work tomorrow.  Although I’m really looking forward to being productive and social again, I’m neutropenic (and tired) again.  And I caught another cold from Alex.  I can’t wait for spring to come and our perpetually runny noses to go away!

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Responses

  1. So glad to hear that you are not experiencing nausea, Jenn, and that the treatment process is moving along. I hope that returning to work will be energizing for you. And may all your family runny noses run somewhere else! Spring’s gotta come sometime in the near future.

    Sending love and prayer,
    Nikki

  2. Jenn,
    Hang in there! We a praying for you and your precious family. Thanks for the blogs and the updates.
    God bless you,
    Uncle Ken and Aunt Jenny

  3. Jenn,

    We’ve been keeping up with your blog and are glad to hear that the treatments are going well. Its good to hear that you are not experiencing the nausea that is common with chemo.

    Stay strong. We are praying for you and looking forward to seeing all of you soon.

    Steve, Rena and Marlee

  4. Hi Sweetie,
    I’m glad the treatments aren’t giving you much trouble.

    Stay strong, and remember I love you sooooooo much!

    love Dad

  5. Hey Jen. Just wanted to drop by and check on you. Give my best to everyone. Stay strong.

    Luv ya,
    Jimmy

  6. We’re so thankful that the Chemo is going so well. We are praying for you and your family. You are one tough little gal. God bless you and your family.

    All our love,
    Joe & Kris

  7. Hi Jen,
    You are absolutely remarkable. I don’t know if I thanked you for your blog. I hope this is as helpful to you as it is to me. This connection is giving me a lot of strength. I know it suppose to be the other way around. Continue being strong and keep smiling. Hello to you three guys.
    Love you all.
    Uncle Eddie and Aunt June

  8. Jenn,

    Hang in there! Spring will, um, “sproing?” soon!

  9. Hi Jen,

    Glad to hear that the treatments are going well. and that you are staying upbeat and positive.

    I took Zofran when I was pregnant with Alex for horrible morning sickness-it was a lifesaver for me!

    I have noticed that the days seem to be getting a bit longer-a sure sign of spring! There are predicting 50 degrees here tomorrow-summah-like!

    Thanks for the updates-I am impressed with your blogging!

    Love,
    Beth, Bill & Alex


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