Saturday, March 3, 2012

Gemcitabine Bites Back and I surrender

Last night, Mark woke me up because I was wheezing.  This morning, I watched Natalie and Larissa get ready for school from the sofa.  Just sitting there, I couldn't catch my breath. 

I kept reminding myself that I have pneumonia.  This is just part of it.  Mark kept reminding me that I had been on antibiotics for a week now and things should be getting better. 

Mark called Dr. Laudi, who wanted to see me right away, because he thinks I am having an adverse reaction the the chemo I have been on since  ---.  Gemcitiabine.  I hear Mark's voice from August 2010, "Cancer doesn't end up killing people, the chemo and drugs do the killing."

At Dr. Laudi's office, my blood pressure was up 190s/100s, my heart rate was 140-150s, and my oxygen sats were dropping to 77%.  My chest Xray was all whited out.  Mark pulled up a picture of my cheat XRay from 2 years ago and the difference was startling.  An ECHO showed fluid build-up around my heart, so my heart was working harder.  I have fluid in my lungs and pitting edema in my ankles.  When hearts and lungs try hard to compensate, but they are less efficient and stressed under these conditions.  Cardiac or respiratory failure is a real concern.  Cardiac or respiratory failure means death. 

This is not my day to die.

I tell Dr. Laudi that I don't have time for all this. I have things to do. I have a family. I have to go to work this weekend.  He tells me that's not happening.  I had EKG to check the condition of my heart, ultrasounds of my legs and arms to look for blood clots and I was started on Lasix. Mark ran home to get me some supplies, grab my nook and computer while I was admitted to Mercy Hospital for observation.  Mark dropped off Olivia with my sister, Amy. Later, he went home to pick up Natalie and Larissa and let Amore out.  My mother wanted to come and spend the night with me, but I told her I was fine.  

My night nurse was training in another nurse. He came in around 7:00 PM and asked if I would like an 'innapropriate movie' to watch. This caught me off guard and made me laugh! Why not?

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