Sunday, January 31, 2010

We're here at Hershey Med getting ready for the big procedure.  I'm thrilled to hear that Deb got a call from the bone marrow registry and may be able to help save somebody's life.  What a great thing!
Casey's friend Matt Horning is a 5th grade teacher at Adamstown Elementary school.  Matt's students made cards for Casey, we were reading them and they made us smile and chuckle.  Thank you to Matt and his students.  That was a very touching thing to do.
Casey's swimmers made him a beautiful poster with all of their photos on it.  We had our hands full of stuff today, but the poster will certainly be in his room tomorrow.  He will have all you with him through the process.
Thank you to everyone for your ongoing support as we embark on this new adventure.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Final preparations are being made for Casey's hibernation at Hershey Medical Center.  Friday morning he will have a new central line put in.  A central line is a port for dispensing his medicine intravenously.  They put tubes into his veins under his skin and through the outside on his chest.  So rather than having to stick him with needles constantly, they administer his chemo through the outside opeings of his port.  They wanted to use a different one than the one he had in before, so he has gone 2 weeks with no tubes hanging out of his chest.  His cats thought the tubes were toys the way they dangled and would swat at them while he was trying to sleep.  They also make taking a shower a bit of a challange.  We have to tape up the tubes and seal the openings on his chest with plastic covers.  Casey was not able to take daily showers, so he may not have smelled the best, but at least his hair was never a mess.  His hair is starting to come back in.  He has a 5:00 shadow on his head.  I have also enrolled the puppies (Annie and Bowie) into Doggie Day Care.  That place has no idea what they are getting into.  Every day at 1:00 they have nap time, where they dim the lights and put a movie in for them to watch for an hour.  Other times of the day they have sofas to sit on and friends to socialize with.  Casey, Annie and Bowie have gotten so attached, it is going to be hard for them to be apart for a month.  I have a feeling Casey will be calling them on the phone.  I know I would never get away with trying to convince the staff they are therapy dogs.  They love life and are happy to see everyone.  Let's pray everything goes smooth and easy, so Annie and Bowie can have their Casey home with them fast.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

We have a date!  Casey will be admitted into the hospital on January 31st to start his chemo, with the transplant taking place on February 8th.  They are having 2 cords shipped, one is from Germany and the second one is coming from France.  I'm really not sure what the outcome of this will be.  Will he want brie with his wiener schnitzel?  Can anyone picture Casey wearing a beret?  This week is some kind of French holiday, so the cord will not be shipped until next week.  They will not start him on chemo until they have the cords in house, so we have to hope they both arrive in a timely manner.  They won't put him through the intense chemo without knowing for sure that everything is in place a ready to go. 

Friday, January 15, 2010

We had a good day yesterday.  All signs point to Casey being healthy enough for the transplant.  The labs will be done more in depth, but from initial readings it all looks good.  They will have the cord blood shipped.  It is coming from Germany.  When it gets here they will set the schedule.  Casey will probably crave brauts and wiener schnitzel after the transplant, which is ok...If he starts wearing leaderhosen I will get a bit concerned!  Today they will remove his central line and they will replace it with a different one for the transplant after he is admitted to the hospital.  He is anxious to not have tubes hanging out of his chest for a week.   So once again we are waiting for a phone call saying it is time to come in.  We are thinking late next week.  The first week will be intense chemo, followed by the transplant and 3 weeks of hospital recovery and then daily visits to the hospital.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

On Thursday, Casey has a day full of tests to make sure he is ready for the transplant.  First stop is with his doctor, who will go over the transplant in detail with us, telling us what to expect.  He will then have another bone marrow biopsy, an echocardiogram and a pulminary test to make sure his heart and lungs are in good enough shape to withstand the procedure. I have a feeling we will come away with a lot of questions, so we have Aunt Debbie going with us as an extra set of ears, and her well educated mind.  I have not been able to read the literature they gave me.  I start getting a bit freaked, and put it to the side, but Dr. Ehmann has a calming way of conveying information.  Hopefully we will get back from the hospital in time on Thursday for me to be able to post more information.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Casey was at the hospital yesterday to get a seasonal and an H1N1 vaccination.  They also took about a gallon of blood from him (give or take a few quarts) and are testing him for just about everything, to make sure he is ready for the transplant.  Dr. Ehmann is on vacation this week, but Janet who is his nurse was filling Casey in on some details. Next week we will have a consultation to get all of the information and to prepare us for what is to come.  They have reserved the umbilical cords that are compatible for Casey's transplant (I am not sure what part of the world they are in at this point - but thank you to whoever had the knowledge and compassion to donate them to  I am anxious to get to the next step, but am very thankful that his doctor's are taking their time to make sure he has the best situation for the safest outcome.
Please keep those prayers coming!