Friday, December 31, 2010


Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Back home today.

Back home from the hospital today. Finally can get a good nights sleep, then back to the clinic for blood tests and Dr. visit tomorrow at 8:00 am. How fortunate I am to have such a great bone marrow transplant team at SCCA watching over me so closely.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Still here in the Hosptial - feel fine (normal).

Still here in the hospital. Feels more like jail since I am not allowed to go out of my room because they don't want this virus to spread. It's a bit frustrating because they say it's a serious virus, yet they still don't have any test result back from last Thursday's test to determine if I still have the virus or not! Normally, the result should come back the next day but the weekend and the holidays have delayed things. They are still doing the 2-hr treatment every 8 hrs so it is good that I am staying healthy with this treatment. My only symptom is a runny nose. I am exercising daily and eating lots and skyping with Toshiko and Tyler. They said the longest I would be here is 10 days. Hopefully I can get out a day early and be home for new years.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Back in the hospital.

This week I have some very minor signs of a cold. A test came back showing it to be RSV - a respiratory virus similar to the common cold but at higher risk of causing pneumonia. The doctors concluded the safest thing to do is treat it now as a prevention so is doesn't spread to my lungs. The treatment is called Ribavarin treatment. It's done in the hospital 3 times a day, 2 hours each time. They put an enclosed clear plastic square "bubble" over the bed and run ventilator that humidifies the medicine and I wear a mask to breath it in. Not sure how many days I'll be here, but sounds like at least 5 days or so. I started last night.


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Day-80 bone marrow test clear. No Cancer.

The day-80 post-transplant bone marrow test came back clear today. Complete remission. This is the last bone marrow test the transplant team will do. The next bone marrow test will be sometime during the next year when I go back to my regular Oncologist.

I still have skin rash issues as a result of GVHD but it seems to be getting better with the steroids. So, we are going to try tapering the steroids again and see how I respond. I had a Long-term-follow-up training course today in preparation to depart the transplant team. It was quite informative. I learned that GVHD could be quite possibly be hanging around for a year or so and also I really need to be cautious for basically 1 year as I am still on immunosuppresant drugs. Also, my new immune system is still quite young. They have lot's of rules, and do's & don't's. I'll be getting all new immunizations at the one year mark (next Sept) also.

I have reached a milestone this week. I could not have done this without all the incredible outpouring of love and support from my loving Family, Friends, Doctors, Nurses and one very special donor. It is simply amazing how many people have come together to cure me. Words cannot express how grateful I truly am.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Lots of tests this week...

...Starting with my day-80 post-transplant bone marrow test and spinal tap tomorrow. This is the last time they are scheduled to do these tests before releasing me from the transplant team - what a relief - they are not fun. Then, on Wednesday I have Xrays, dental exam, blood tests, Dr. meeting, and a Long-term Departure orientation class. Friday; med-photo's, CT scan, more blood tests. I am both excited and nervous about this week. While they are tests that are signifying the end of the transplant process, they are also tests where the doctors are checking very close for anything abnormal.

Currently, in addtion to my other 13 daily meds, I am still on the high-dose steroids (70 mg of prednisone/day) because they are still trying to get my GVHD skin rash completely under control. Last Friday, they also started me on another drug (Mylophenolate) to control the skin rash which doesn't have as bad of side effects as prednisone. So, the plan is to hopefully start to taper the prednisone this week.

The rash is getting better and and I just feel great. Toshiko and I were able to go to a friends birthday party Friday and also my company Christmas party Saturday night. We had a wonderful time. It was great seeing and talking with all of my friends there. It was a bit emotional for me as it has been almost exactly one year since my diagnosis and it just felt great to be among friends and feeling somewhat "normal" again after such a very long, very tough year.


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving to all. Ski pic's - don't tell my doctors!!

Hi everyone. On Nov 23rd we had snow and sun at our house! I couldn't resist the temptation so went out and skied in our driveway while Tyler was on his sled! At just 60-days post-transplant, the doctor's probably wouldn't approve of this but it sure felt great to be on my skis again. We had a nice thanksgiving dinner today at my house with Toshiko, Tyler, my parents, and a friend from Japan. Today is my one day off from the Clinic today. Had spinal tap yesterday (just one more to go now) and lots of other blood tests. Will see the Nurse tomorrow again to assess my GVHD rash. It has flared up a bit since we started the tapering the steroids, so they are watching close and have slowed down the taper. I feel great and getting better every day. So much to be thankful for this year. Love to all my family and friends. More pics below...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Day 49 since transplant.

Today is the 49th day since my transplant date. So tomorrow I will be halfway to the 100-day mark which is when I am scheduled to be released from the transplant team and go back to general oncology doctor . That is also the time I am schedule to go back home. Although the doctors may possible let me return earlier. For now, they still say I am too vulernable to infection to return home full time. I have been have more frequent afternoon visits home though and it has been so nice spending time with Toshiko & Tyler as I feel better.

Yesterday I had another spinal tap which went smooth - only 2 more to go! I am still having some GVHD issues with skin rashes. They are trying to get it controlled with topical steroids and photo therapy (like a suntan bed). This, in hopes that they can start tapering me off the Steroids pills which I have been taking for more than two weeks. These pills are effective, but dangerous as they are making my platelets drop and also greatly increase infection risk. There are other long term side effects possible also, so they want to start tapering soon. I am still feeling better with each day and feeling closer to "normal" every day.


Friday, November 5, 2010

One day at a time.

Dr. appointments went smooth this week without any major issues. I am still on the Prednisone steroid to control the skin rash from the GVHD. This makes my metabolism very high which quickly reduces muscle mass in my arms and legs. So, they have me eating at least 110 grams of protein per day and I am still loosing weight so they want me to excerise my muscles as much as posssible. I am currently 146 lbs (my normal weight is 165 lbs). I am feeling better every day and recovering good.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Good day.

Today I feel a bit better than the past few days. I was able to walk and eat more. I have been feeling a little better each day. It will just take time to recover. I am basically recovering faster than average. So, hopefully the "good days" will start outweighing the "bad days". They do have me on about 20 pills per day plus IV fluids which all contribute to how I feel. I am pushing myself to walk, exercise, and eat more which also will speed up recovery.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Complete Remission!

The results of the bone marrow test came back today and showed "no evidence of previously diagnosed Leukemia". This is the best news. This proves the transplant was successful. It was pretty emotional for me because for 10 months there has always be some very small % show when they did that test. There will be 3 more bone marrow test over the next 60 days to check and make sure it is still working. I still have lot of recovery and other issues to work out over the next 2 months. I tested positive for Graft vs. Host Desease (GVHD). It's mainly rashes on my hands and arms. My hands are swollen and with lots of bumps making it difficult and painful to do simple tasks like opening a bottle of water. They started me on Steroids to clear this up. They said some GVHD is good because it helps fight off any possible residual desease.

Thank you very much to everyone. I am overwhelmed with the amount of support from so many family and friends. I feel incredible loved by so many.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Bone marrow test tomorrow.

Well, it's already been 27 days since the donor cells were transplanted into me. So, tomorrow I will have the first of 4 bone marrow aspirations to test and see how well the engraftment is working and also to check if there are any remaining residual deseased cells. The doctors today said all of my blood test show all of my organs are working strong and normally and my blood counts are very good. They said I am doing quite well. I do have some mild skin rashes on my arms that could be some mild GVHD (graft vs host desease). It is expected that I will get some GVHD at some point, and this is good because it helps fight off any possible remaining bad cells.
I am still rather weak and tired most of the time. For example; I get up and walk for 15 minutes, then need to take a nap for an hour. But I am feeling better each day. I am on IV fluids at home all day that I administer myself with a pump they gave me.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Happy Birthday!

Today is my birthday. I am feeling better each day. I had a nice day. After my appointments at the clinic, I had several visitors. It was great to see and talk with everyone. I couldn't do this without all of the loving support I have from so many family and friends. My parents have been especially great - basically waiting on me hand and foot all day. I am still feeling quite weak and moving slow, but my blood count are all moving up quite well every day and this makes me feel better each day. Next, I have appointments for tests and procedures every day this week starting tomorrow. Things are going good.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Out of the hospital now.

Yesterday I was discharged from the hospital. My counts are steadily rising and the doctors said everything else looks fine. So, they decided to discharge me early since there is less change for receiving an infection at home than at the hospital. This is all good news, yet is it quite a challenge because I still feel very week. I am walking quite slow and eating a bit more now. I had clinic visits today and will have more every day for a while. The support I am getting from all of my family is just amazing. I am fortunate.


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Got Cells?

Today the blood test finally showed my new white blood cells are starting to engraft! WBC today is 0.110 with Neutrophil count of 0.060. These should now start a steady incline which usually replicate fast. The best thing is I will feel better each as these counts continue to climb. The Neutrophil count needs to increase to safe level of 0.500 and I should then be OK to home (possibly next week). I am still rather weak so am working on eating and walking more.


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I am hanging in there.

This is very tough, but everything is going well. The Doctors say everything looks good and going as planned. Still lots of pain with the mucositis. I am still eating and walking each day. I should start feeling better as soon as the WBC's start coming in which should be within the next 7 days or so.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Morphine is becoming my friend.

The mucositis has been causing quite a bit of pain. But I am learning how to manage it with morphine. I have still been eating and getting up and walking several times per day. Have to push myself sometimes, but generally I am doing good. The doctor said everything is going smooth and all of my counts for organ functions look very good. It's tough, but I am on the road (a long road) to recovery. Endurance and persistance are important so I am keeping up on all the things they suggest I do. I'll be out skiing before I know it!


Sunday, September 26, 2010

The new cells are in me now.

Yesterday, the transplant of the new bone marrow cells finally completed at about 10:00 am. A total of about 9 hours. I was completely exhausted by the time it was finished. It was a tough feeling because I was so tired I couldn't sleep. I have been up all day and night with trips to the bathroom every hour for the past 2 days. However, I have been able to get some sleep in between. They tell me the mucositis should set in in the next couple of days. It is suppose to be rather painful and they will give me morophine. I have had lots of family and friends visit so that is helpful. Just taking one day at a time.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Transplant day.

Today is the big day. Actually, the schedule is that the donor cells will be here about 1:00 am, so technically, tomorrow will be the date of transplant. The cells arrive to the airport at 9:00 pm, then go through processing at SCCA before arriving to my room at the hospital at 1:00 am. I am still feeling pretty good. Looking forward to this evening.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Last day of Chemo is now done.

Today I finished my last day of Chemo. Still no major side effects. I will have break tomorrow, then the new cells from my donor will be infused on Friday. Everything is moving along smoothy.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First day of chemo done today.

Today I was admitted to the hospital and finished the first day of chemo. I am starting to feel some side effects, but still no nausea or vomiting, which is good. I received red blood cells today also since by counts are dropping. Tomorrow is the last day of chemo.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Last day of Radiation done.

Today I finished the final day of radiation. I am fortunate again to not have any side effects today. Just tired and walking a bit slower. Tomorrow I will be admitted to the hospital at 8:00 am. Tues & Wed will be chemo, rest on Thurs, then received the transplant on Fri. I'll keep taking one day at a time.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Day 2 of radiation.

Today I finished the 2nd day of TBI (Total Body Irradiation) today. I feel better today than yesterday. No side effects (just tired) - which is uncommon. My blood counts are dropping though. Tomorrow is the last day of radiation.


Saturday, September 18, 2010

First day of radiation done.

Today I finished the first day of radiation. I didn't get the most common symptoms of nausea and vomiting. However I've had a bad headache earlier that seems to be getting better this evening. It also made me tired - I slept several hours after coming home. Will go in at 8:00 am again tomorrow to do it again.


Friday, September 17, 2010

Radiation starts tomorrow.

Tomorrow I go in for the first day of Total Body Radiation (TBI). 2 sessions - one at 8:00 am, then the other at 2:00 pm. Same schedule on Sunday and Monday. Then admission to the hospital on Tuesday for 2 days Chemo before the actual transplant which will be next Friday. They trained me today on using the infusion pump that I will carry in a backpack so I can give myself IV fluids for hydration at home during these 3 days. They also gave me 4 different kinds of nausea meds since radiation often causes nausea. I'll try to post again after radition and let everyone know how it goes.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Transpant day is fast approaching.

After all the tests and procedures last week, we are still on track to start the transplant this Saturday, the 18th. I guess they haven't found anything wrong with me (except the residual Leukemia in my bone marrow, of course). Last week, Toshiko and I also had a lot of teaching at the clinic for food safety and home care since there will be several months after the transplant of being careful not to get infections or bacteria while my new immune system is developing. This week there will be some procedures, training, and doctor meetings. I'll have dental cleaning, another spinal tap, a simulation of TBI (Total body irradiation), and sign final consent forms with the Doctors. Most of the tests are now done. My parents are coming over on the 18th also. They will be also be going to the home care classes next week as I will be staying with them in the condo near the hospital when I get out.

We had an early birthday party for Tyler this evening (he'll be 3 on Sept 26th). Just the 3 of us went to a nice Japanese restaurant where they all sang happy birthday to Tyler and brought him some nice ice cream with a candle. He really enjoyed it. We also bought him a little Guitar - he seems to really like guitars.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Enjoying the weekend.

This past week was quite busy at the Clinic. I was there just about all day, every day. Lot's of tests, procedures, and appointments with doctors. It will be the same thing this week. However, after a morning blood transfusion yesterday, I have the rest of this 3-day weekend off. I have been sleeping a lot though (I think as a result of the spinal tap with chemo on Friday). This morning I went over to Bremerton and had a nice time visiting with everyone there. My sister, brother, their families, and friends over there are having a huge garage sale to raise money to contribute to my fund ( They have been a great help and the garage sale is quite a success! Thanks everyone!

The current schedule still has me on track to start Radiation on Sept 18th. I'll then be admitted to the hospital on Sept 21st for 2 days of Chemo. Then, the actual transplant will be on Sept 24th.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Fundraiser for un-insured transplant medical expenses.

Aside from the busy schedule I just posted, I also have the financial side to deal with. The cost of the transplant will exceed the maximum limit of my Insurance provider. So, my parents have been very helpful and started a Fundraiser through a great professional organization. I have my own page on their website with our letter and picture. You can view may page at , enter my name under "find a patient" and you can then read all about it and contribute if you like.

Thanks to everyone for all of your support. Feel free to call or e-mail if you any questions.

Eric Dover
cell 253-948-6667

Feeling better. Busy schedule preparing for transplant.

My white blood counts started coming back a few days ago. This has given me some energy. I finally started giving the daily Growth-factor shots to myself (in the stomach) each day. This saves some time at the clinic. I have very busy schedule over the next 3 weeks in preparation for the transplant. The schedule they gave me shows many days of testing and appoinments. X-rays, EKG, Dental check up, Blood tests, Spinal tap, bone marrow aspiration, complete physical exam, etc. They really want to make sure I go in to this as strong as possible.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Getting out of the hospital today.

I'll get a blood tranfusion today, then they are sending home. My white counts are still at zero so I'll have daily appoinments at the clinic starting tomorrow morning. I feel fine. It will be nice to sleep at home without the constant nightly interruptions.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fever, emergency room.

On Thursday evening I developed a little fever. I went straight to the ER. They admitted me, did a bunch of tests and started me on antibiotics. The fever has gone down and been normal for about 24 hours. No other symptoms. They want me to stay another day or so though since my white blood counts are still at zero. I feel fine.


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Let's get more follower sign up on my Blog.

Hi everyone,

It is very encouraging to receive all the calls and e-mails I get from blog. Thank you. Currently, there are 39 who have registered on this blog as followers. I know the are lot more of you than that who are following my progress. So, if you haven't already done so, please click the "Follow" button to the left to sign up. Thanks again!
Today's blood test showed my White blood count at only 0.01. So, I have basically hit bottom for this round. This was the desired effect necessary to hopefully kill all of the cancer. I have to be very cautious for the next several days since I can easily receive any infection with this low count. I do feel fine though. Just taking it easy.


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Feeling a little better today.

Yesterday I received about 5 hours of blood transfusions. This made me feel quite a bit better and more energetic today. However, my white cell blood counts are still near zero and expected to be there still for a few days. So, I am on antibiotics and serveral other meds, plus being very cautious.


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Blood counts going down.

I got out of the hospital yesterday. Finally had a good nights sleep last night. Came in to the clinic this morning for blood draws and the shot in the stomach to boost my which counts. As expected, my blood counts are all on the way down. I will probably get a transfusion tomorrow. I still feel OK and no side effects - just tired.


Friday, August 6, 2010

Last day of Chemo.

Today is my last day of Chemo and I then get out of the hospital tomorrow morning. I have been tired, but no other sided effects, so that is good. I could feel worse next week when my counts really start to go down. I have follow-up appointments nearly every day next week at the SCCA clinic, so they are watching me closely. The Doctor said today that his plan is to send me to the transplant team after this round, maybe within the next week or two.


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Feeling fine today in the Hospital.

I have received two days of Chemo since checking in here at the UW Medical Center on Monday. I feel fine, just very tired at times. I have been walking around quite a bit. Am scheduled to get out on Saturday.


Sunday, August 1, 2010

Great day of Windsurfing!

OK, so these pictures weren't from today. Toshiko took them of me when we went to Fiji a few years back. I sure have missed windsurfing this summer. Can't wait to be out there next summer.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Bone Marrow test results.

This week I had a bone marrow aspiration done to see how effective the new chemo from two weeks ago was. The result showed a slight increase in % of cancer ( from 0.1% to 0.4%). The doctor said that although this is a bit higher, he considers it unchanged (from a clinical standpoint). The goal still is to get the cancer to zero before transplant and the doctor concluded that the last chemo was not effective enough. So, he is starting me on Monday with a 5-day hospital stay to received stronger chemo. I'll be at the UW Hospital this time.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Chemo, Transplant, Donor update.

Last week I recovered well from the previous weeks' Chemo. I had minimal side effects. Mainly just very tired.

Here is a summary of my current situation:

The first 6 months of chemo got the cancer in my blood and bone marrow down from 82% to 0.1% (6 rounds). The goal was to get it to zero after 4 of scheduled 8 rounds, then keep it at zero 'til 8 rounds were finished. However, since I still have 0.1% after 6 rounds, the doctors concluded to stop the final 2 rounds, start me on another Chemo, and prepare for bone marrow transplant. It is tough dealing with the fact that we were so close to getting this cured without the transplant. However, the chance of relapse is considerably less after a transplant. Also, a transplant requires less than 5% (preferably 0%) cancer before proceeding - so those first 6 months were necessary and not a waste of time.

Bone Marrow transplant:
The first step is to find the donor. Testing concluded last week showed my brother as partial match. Next, they look for a perfect match (this would be preferred over my brother) at the Unrelated Donor Pool. This is an international registry of over 12 million donors. Testing revealed that I have a rather common type of genetics that fortunately resulted in about 400 potential perfect matches from the initial search. This week, they will start more tests for a more detailed search that should filter that 400 down quite a bit. It is a very specialized, scientific process that is quite involved. SCCA (Seattle Cancer Care Alliance) is one the best places in the world for this. They do about 500 transplants per year.
After the donor is found, I will undergo many tests to determine if I am healthy enough to handle the transplant. When the transplant starts, they give me several days of very strong Radiation and Chemo to wipe out my current bone marrow. Then the donated bone marrow (or stem cells) are transfused into my veins (just like a blood transfusion). From this point, it will take 2-4 weeks for the new cells to start producing white blood cells and basically "replacing" my old bone marrow. They say about 90 days after the transplant is when I start to get back to "normal".


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Started Chemo Yesterday.

I started Chemo yesterday, again. I will get 2 hour infusions Mon-Wed-Fri of this week. This is my first treatment at SCCA. It has been going smooth there. I have not experienced any side effect except feeling very tired today. Most side effects would be more apparent next week. My parents are staying with us on and off to help as my caregivers and get familiar with SCCA before my anticipated bone marrow transplant. This is a huge help to us. Toshiko has her hands full with Tyler (he will be 3 in Sept).

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Family picture from today.

Enjoying the nice weather before Chemo on Monday.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Chemo delayed a few days.

My white count was a bit low today so they are giving me shots for 3 days to boost it and will then start Chemo on Monday. The other blood counts looked fine. This was my first official day at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance so I met with a Doctor, several nurses, and coordinators. I left there feeling quite impressed and secure with their establishment. I am starting to understand why they are one of the best cancer centers in the world. I just want you all to know that I am going to beat this and be out doing things I love again - like skiing. Yea, this picture is of me - back when I was racing in the Air Force. I'll be doing this again next winter.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Starting Chemo again tomorrow.

I am still scheduled to start Chemo again tomorrow. 3 days of 2-hrs per day infusions (every other day). They will do a blood test first though - if my counts are still too low they may delay the treatment. Will know more tomorrow. This picture of Toshiko and Tyler was taken just down the trail from our house. This is where I have been walking every day for rehabilitation.


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Just a picture today...

... of my beautiful and loving wife and son.


Monday, July 5, 2010

Holiday break.

Last Wednesday I received a 6 hour blood transfusion that left me feeling great and energetic. So, Toshiko and I hosted BBQ at our community beach front area for the 4th. Thanks so much to all of you that came. It was such a fun and joyful time. I am truly blessed to have such a very wonderful family and so many great friends.

This Thursday I will be starting Chemo again. I will be transferring to the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA). I'll have 3 days of outpatient treatment. It's a very strong Chemo that will wipe out my blood counts again. The plan is that I will get 1 or 2 rounds of this Chemo while we prepare and test for the bone marrow transplant which is estimated to be about 6 - 8 weeks away.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Bone Marrow Transplant.

This week I had the Bone marrow test done. The results revealed that my treatments so far have been somewhat successful. However, there is still a minimal amount of residual cancer in my bone marrow - and this should not show up at this stage in my treatment. So, the doctors are now recommending I pursue a bone marrow transplant. My wife and I will been meeting with one of the top transplant doctors at SCCA on Monday. My brother will be coming along also as he has the highest probability of being a matching Donor.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Round 6 completed.

I finished round 6 this past week (with the exception of receiving more chemo shots next Friday, but only a small amount). It went smooth. I got out of the Hospital on Wednesday and went to the clinic on Thursday and Friday for blood tests and inter-muscular injections of Chemo. I have been very, very fortunate to have not received any major side effects so far from this round. Just been a little tired. There is still a chance I could feel bad or get sick this week but I don't think so because they withheld one of the more potent Chemo medicines and replaced it with an increased dose of another. The doctor said it is also because it went into this round strong and with long break since the last chemo. So, it feels good to feel good! Let's hope this week is the same. Thank you very much to everyone for all of the visits, calls, e-mails, and support. I feel like that is a huge help also.


Sunday, June 6, 2010

Chemo starting tomorrow.

After meeting with the Doctor on Thursday for the 2nd opinion, it was concluded that we will start my next round (round 6) on Monday, June 7th. He thinks my counts are high enough and we should not wait any longer because it gives any possible remaining cancer too much of a chance to grow. He also suggested several changes to the type and dosage of Chemo. He called my doctor and discussed all of this and they both agreed on the changes. The meeting left me scared because the Doctor emphasised concern about the small remaining residual amount of cancer that showed up from in my bone marrow after round 4. His conclusion was to do another bone marrow test after this next round and if that shows any residual trace of cancer, I should start planing for a bone marrow transplant. However, there is a good chance that no cancer will show up with that test. Then, I would continue with round 7 and 8 as scheduled and be finished with my treatment.


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

and we continue to wait...

Blood test restults today again showed steady, but slow improvement. I am getting much closer, but still need to wait another week. We'll test again next Monday - and I will be admitted to the hospital that same day if my counts are high enough (it's a real good chance they will be high enough by then). This actually worked out good because I have another 2nd opinion appoinment this Thursday with one of these top doctors is this region on my specific type of cancer. My doctor consulted with him back in February after my 2nd opinion then and concluded to implement some of his suggestions. So, I wanted check in with him again just to make sure I am getting the best possible treatment and the best decisions are being made.


Monday, May 24, 2010

Still need to wait.

Today's blood test result showed steady improvement and good recovery of my blood counts. However, the platelet count is still not high enough so I need to still wait before starting my next round of Chemo. The Dr. expects about 1 more week. So, I am trying to just relax and enjoy the time off.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Blood counts recovering.

Today's blood test results finally show some improvement. The white cell count increased from last week. The platelet count is the same as last week (which is much better than decreasing as they have been for the past 4 weeks). The Dr. said he would expect them to continue to recover enough this week to hopefully start my 6th round of Chemo next week. We'll test again next Monday and possibly be admitted to the hospital that same day for Chemo. During these past 4 weeks, I have been getting some excercise each day and eating lots so my weight is nearly back to normal again.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Still waiting.

I am still waiting for my blood counts to recover before I can start my next round of Chemo. I have felt fine for the past 2 weeks but my blood counts still remain low. I received blood transfusions about once per week and will get another tomorrow. The Dr. assures me that this is not uncommon for these later rounds in my treatment. However, it is a bit frusterating because I want to start my next round and finish my treatment but I have to wait - even though I feel fine.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Blood counts recovering slower.

This past Friday's blood test showed my blood counts recovering slower than in the past (which explains why I haven't felt any better this week than the previous). The Dr. said this is common for later rounds and not to worry about it. So, I went in for blood transfusions both Friday and Saturday. I feel much better now. I'll have more blood tests the next few days to see when my counts start recovering.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Tough past 5 days.

On Tuesday my blood counts suddenly dropped very low. I have felt pretty bad ever since with some painful side effects from the Chemo. However, the good news is I have not gotten sick and my count should start back up within a few days. I had a 6 hour of blood transfusion yesterday and felt better after that. I really needed the red blood as I could barely walk without nearly fainting. It's amazing how quickly that feeling changes after receiving blood.


Monday, April 12, 2010

Good blood counts today.

Blood tests today show my red and white blood counts are still a bit high and that is why am feeling pretty good now. They will be going down very low any day now but it's good that they are holding high for a while as this reduces the number of days that I will be so vulnerable to infection (which reduces the risk of getting sick also). Next tests will be on Wednesday and I expect I may need a Platelet transfusion by then.


Sunday, April 11, 2010

Back home again.

I have been back home since Friday afternoon. Just been getting lots of sleep. Will be going in for blood tests and Dr. visit tomorrow. Will also be getting some shots of Chemo tomorrow.


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Bone Marrow test results.

The Dr. said the results look good. They show only 0.01 - 0.02 abnormal cells (very, very mininal cancer remaining). He expects this the get cleared up to 0.00 during this round and next round. In fact, he spoke with pathologist who told him that he almost called it 0.00 this time since it was such a very small trace amount, but he concluded it would safer to show this small trace amount. We'll do another bone marrow test after next round to confirm. I in the hosptial for Chemo on day 3 of 5 currently and feel ok. I go home on Friday.


Saturday, April 3, 2010


I had the bone marrow biopsy procedure done a few days ago on Wednesday. It was with conscious sedation, but I was still awake enough to feel and remember most of it. It was a bit painful and there is still some pain, but really not too bad. Results will be in next week. I also still am starting round 5 of Chemo on Monday. I am feeling pretty good now. We went out and had a nice dinner last night at the Old Spaghetti Factory. Tyler had a blast - he loves going there.

  • Eric

Monday, March 29, 2010

Good Progress report.

I am now 1/2 done with my treatment. The Dr. did the special flow cytometry blood test again last Friday to see if there was any cancer still in my blood. The results today show NO cancer (0.00%) in my blood. It was quite reassuring to receive this news today. The next step now for progress is to see if there are any cancerous cells in my bone marrow. There is a chance of this since the bone marrow makes the white cells which previously had cancer in my blood. The bone marrow test will be performed this Wednesday. The results will take a few days to receive. I am now feeling back to normal for the most part. I am concentrating this week on getting my weight back up. I have dropped to 148 lbs and look pretty thin. Scheduled to start Chemo again next Monday.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

fever, back home now.

Last Friday I spiked a fever and immediately went to the hospital. They got me started quickly on IV antibiotics. I was in the ICU for 2 days, then the regular floor 'till yesterday. It was a blood infection again so it was a very difficult 5 days. Back home now and recovering.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Still tired.

Spent most of the day at the clinic getting two blood transfusions today. This did boost my energy a bit and my appetite is starting to come back. But still, I just feel tired. My white bloods counts have been at their low point the past few days so I am being very careful again to avoid getting sick. I sure will glad when this is all finally over!


Monday, March 15, 2010

Tough couple of days.

Since coming home from the hospital, I still didn't get much sleep due to several side affects. But things are getting under control and I am not sick. I was able to sleep most of this afternoon after getting back from the clinic. I had a spinal tap and two other shots today.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Going home tomorrow morning.

This has been a long week. The lack of sleep and busy schedule receiving Chemo and lots of meds has been tough the past 2 days. However, I am getting through it fine with my vital signs normal all week and my blood counts are all ok. I have one more Chemo tonight at 2:00 am (Friday am) then I go home in the morning. It will be nice to go home and get some rest.


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Busy past 2 days.

I am starting my 3 rd day of Chemo today. The past 2 days went smooth but were quite busy. I feel fine and am scheduled to go home Friday.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Round 4 started today.

Today I started round 4 of my Chemo treatment. At 8:30 am the Dr gave me Chemo via spinal tap. Then, I was admitted to the hospital for 4-5 days. We added a Chemo to the treatment and they gave it to me via 3 shots in my muscles. Now, I am on the first dose of chemo which runs 24 hours. I actually feel relieved now that we finally got this round started after waiting one week.


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Next Chemo update

Today the Dr. said the bacteria I had was from my central port (for those of you that don't know, this is a tube that they implanted under the skin in my chest back in Dec with a catheter to a main vein. This is what they draw blood from, give chemo, transfusions, etc. without having to stick me with a needle every time). So, the plan is they will continue antibiotics for the next 4 days, do another blood culture tomorrow, then start Chemo on Monday (assuming the blood culture shows negative as we expect since I have no fever or other symptoms.) We just need to make completely sure there is not bacteria before starting the next round of Chemo.


Monday, March 1, 2010

Delayed treatment

The blood cultures from Saturday indicate that there might be some bacteria in my blood. So, just to be safe they drew blood again today to retest and verify with a new blood culture. They also started me on an Antibiodic drip for today and that is the plan for the next two days (I just go into the clinic for two hours.) I feel fine and still have no fever, they just need to rule out the chance of any bacteria in my blood before starting Chemo. The delay is a bit frusterating but it is better to be cautious. Hopefully we start on Wed or Thurs of this week.


Sunday, February 28, 2010


Yesterday I got an unexpected fever around 4:00 pm. I took Tylenol and it was fine 'till about 10:00 pm. Then, it came back.. I felt fine, just had the chills a bit. So, just to be safe, I called the doctor. She said it would be best to double-check my blood counts since it hasn't been done since Tuesday. So, I went to the hospital and had it checked. The counts were ok. So, the Doctor concluded to go home and take Tylenol again. I got back home around 12:30, took Tylenol, and went to sleep. Woke up this morning without a fever and feel fine but have been tired today. This could affect starting Chemo again tomorrow, but my guess is we'll still go ahead with it. The probable cause was I had a lot of activity on Friday. On Friday, we had a real nice visit with everyone at my company and Tyler had a lot of fun! It was great to see everyone. Then, we went to some friends house and I played (very lightly!) some racquetball for about 30 minutes. I was careful not to overdue it and the doctor says I should be doing some light excercise when I can. Then, we had a nice dinner. All of that was the most activity I have had in one day for quite a while. I think the fever was just a reaction to me getting a little excercise. Anyway, I feel fine today and I still anticipating starting Chemo tomorrow.


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A few normal days.

My blood counts started rising Monday and I had a transfusion on Sunday and then again yesterday (it took 6 hours!). The Dr. said things look good enough that I don't need to go in again until Monday - which is when I will start my round 4 of Chemo and stay in the hospital for 4 or 5 days. So, I feel great now and I can live a normal life for the next 5 days! After next week, I'll already be half done with my treatments. Times sure flies when you're having fun!

Friday, February 19, 2010

More blood transfusions.

I went in yesterday and today for more blood transfusions. I need to go in again on Sunday also and might need another. I am feeling better after receiving the transfusions but still tired. My white count is still dangerously low but fortunately I still haven' t gotten sick. It should start climbing up again within then next few days so I am still being very cautious. Maybe it's this beautiful weather we are having that keeping me from getting sick!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Being Cautious now.

Today's blood test results showed that my counts all finally dropped into the dangerous zone (as expected). So, I have to be very cautious not to get any infection which would make me sick very quickly. Hopefully the counts will start recovering within then next few days. I received a blood transfusion today and will receive another one tomorrow that will take several hours.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Feeling OK.

It's been 4 days since getting out of the hospital from my last Chemo treatment. I haven't gotten sick this time. However, I am still very vulnerable for at least another 3 days. I have been really focusing this time on trying to be as cautious as possible with my diet, staying hydrated, etc. This helps, but I am doing better this time mainly because my white blood count hasn't dropped as fast as before. Maybe this is because they got basically all of the cancer cells during the first two rounds. I have still been very tired and sleeping a lot for the past 4 days. I have had a headache most of the time also, but it's fine when I am laying down. Just need to keep taking it one day at a time!


Friday, February 12, 2010

Ah - Sleep!

I checked out of the hospital today around noon. Then, went to the clinic to have another one of those fun spinal tap's performed. Now, I am free for the weekend with the exception of going in for a shot tomorrow. After I got home today and ate a quick lunch I layed down and ended up sleeping for 5 hours. I think that was the first 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep I have had all week. I am looking forward to sleeping all night now.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Day 3 of Chemo.

Hi everyone. I am on my 3rd day of chemo here at the hospitial. It is going well and I feel fine. I have been eating and sleeping good. I will be going home on Friday morning. Then, come in on Saturday for a shot to boost my white blood cell count.


Monday, February 8, 2010

Round 3 started

Hi everyone. This morning I went in early to the clinic for a spinal tap chemo injection procedure. It went much better this time than last time - still not a fun thing, though. Then, I was admitted to the hospital and they started chemo. This week will really be just a lot of sitting around and I feel fine. So, if any of you wanted to stop by and see me, this week would be a good time. (as long as you don't have cold, flu, or flu symptoms). I'll be here at least 'till Thursday, probably get out Friday.


Friday, February 5, 2010

Relaxing day.

We went to the Dr. this morning and really didn't do much other than a blood test and set the schedule and plan for next weeks' Chemo. After that, it was such nice weather, we went down and had lunch at the little beach area in our neighborhood. It was sunny, no wind, and low tide so the water was calm. I was trying to teach Tyler how to skip rocks, but all he wanted to do was grab the biggest rocks he could lift and throw them in the water! It seems like Tyler is getting more energy every day, while I am spending every day trying to get my energy back!


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Progress report.

Today I received a blood test answer from a test done 2 days ago. This test was done to check the progress of my treatment. This special blood test is the same test that was done which gave me my original diagnosis back on Dec 16th. At that time, it showed 82.00% of "total viable leukocytes" were abnormal (cancerous). Today's result of the same test for the same cells show only 0.01% abnormal. The Dr. was impressed with this today and called this "remarkable", especially after only completing the first two rounds. Technically, they cannot call this a remission yet because of the 0.01% that showed up, but it sure is close! I am looking forward to cleaning up that last 0.01% with next week's Chemo treatment.


Monday, February 1, 2010

Today's Dr. visit.

Hi everyone. Today my blood counts are up again, in the normal range - except my red counts which are still very slowly improving. The good news is my white count and platelet count are both very high and have recovered on their own. I am still rather fatigued, but feel better today than yesterday. We are still schedule round 3 of chemo starting next Monday (the 8th). The nutritionist at the hospital last week gave me a lot of useful paperwork to schedule and prepare meals that expose the least risk when my body is vulnerable to infection (after chemo). So, I am going to work on a meal plan this week that will ready for when I come home after next week's chemo. Diet and drinking lots of water play a big role in not getting sick - and I didn't drink enough water last time. I hope this will help, because the past two weeks really were very difficult. But I am starting clean again now and I am ready for the next round!


Sunday, January 31, 2010


Today is the last day I go in to the hospital for receiving antibitics. Since I left the hospitial 4 days ago, I have been getting stronger each day. Still sleeping a lot, but my body is getting back to normal, slowly but surely.


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Getting better.

Hi everyone. I got up early today and went to an 8:00 AM appointment for receiving antibiotics I still need to finish. My body feels rid of all the infection, but fatigue level is quite high. It took all of my energy to get up and eat breakfast. I then needed to lay down for about 20 min again. After the appointment I came home and ate more and pushed myself to walk up and down the stairs a few times before laying down again. I think this will take a few days just to get my basic strength back. It's a very strange feeling: I feel well, but have a huge fatigue level. I need to be strong and push myself - without overdoing it.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Back Home Today.

Sorry for no posts for the past 10 days. I got very sick this time. It was pretty tough, but I am fine now. My blood pressure was very low so I wound up in the ICU for 3 days, then 7 days on the regular floor getting mainly antibiotics. I am still pretty weak but improving fast. The Dr and I decided to push out my next chemo treatment by 1 week (about another 10 days) so I can first recover well.


Saturday, January 16, 2010


Hi everyone. Nothing very interesting today. I have been quite tired so have been just sleeping most of the day. I feel fine otherwise. It is normal to be rather tired for the first several days after Chemo. That is usually when it hits the hardest. Fortunately, I don't have any other side affects.


Friday, January 15, 2010

Ready for the weekend.

Spent most of the day today at the clinic. Received a blood transfusion, spinal tap, and shot in the stomach to boost my white count. The spinal tap was unpleasant again. It took 3 attempts this time - partly because I was a bit too jumpy. It's hard to stay still when that big needle is going in your back. The Dr. told me to double the dosage on the anxiety pills next time so I'll be more relaxed. Anyway, back home now and still pretty tired so will take a nap again. They will check my blood again on Monday. 'Till then, I need to take it easy as I am at a higher risk again of receiving infection for about the next 4 days.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Round 2 done!

I'am gettin' out of here this morning. Sorry no post yesterday. There was a lot going on and with frequent adding and changing of different meds. It was a bit tough. I spent just about any free moment sleeping. I did manage to get about 4 solid hours of sleep last night and feel pretty good this morning. I am looking forward to going home and getting some un-interrupted sleep. My red count is down so they will give me a transfusion tomorrow at the clinic. I will also get another spinal tap tomorrow to inject chemo to my spinal cord again. Then, I should have few days off. My white count is not nearly as low as the first round so hopefully I will not spike a fever at home again this time. Also, my platelets are in the normal range still so that is good. I am now 1/4 of the way done!


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Feeling good today.

Didn't really get much sleep last night because the Chemo medicine caused me to get to use the bathroom about every 45 min. But, I do feel good today. My blood counts are all just about normal now which is very good. However, they will be going down again soon because of the Chemo. The first Chemo med went for 24 hours and just finished around noon today. I haven't had any side affects. Now, we wait 'till midnight to start next. They gave me steroids again around 10:00 am today and that had me amped up for the past few hours. It's 3:00 now I thinks it's wearing off 'cause I am getting tired. Toshiko and Tyler came and we had lunch together.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Gettin' the Lemonade

They started the Chemo today. It's yellow so I'll call it the "Lemonade". Last time it was red so that will be the "Coolade". This will go for about 24 hours, then they start another Chemo drug. The spinal tap this morning sure was a lot of fun. It really wasn't that painful, but just the thought of what what they were doing caused me to be very tense. Toshiko was a big help hold just being there and holding my hand. She said the two nurses in the room both had to turn away when the Dr. inserted the big needle. Now, it's just kinda sit and wait and eat hospital food - mmmm, hospital food! It's actually pretty good.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Relaxing weekend.

I had a nice with relaxing weekend with Toshiko and Tyler. Spent lot's time playing with Tyler. He is talking so much now. He has been in the routine of repeating and copying anything I say or do. This make me really think before saying or doing anything around him! I go in tomorrow morning for to start the second round of Chemo. It will be 3 or 4 days. I'll try to update while I am there. Toshiko has a friend with a little girl that is Tyler's age who will watch Tyler tomorrow so she can be with me when they start the Chemo. Tyler will be happy because he will get to play with his favorite little girlfriend!


Friday, January 8, 2010

Feeling normal again.

I finally was able get out and run some errands today. It was nice just to get out and do some normal things. I should feel about the same during the weekend, so I plan on spending more time playing with Tyler before they start round two of Chemo on Monday. Toshiko & I could see how it kinda bothered him that he couldn't spend as much time with Dad during those stays at the hospital. It's nice to feel good for a few days, but I would rather speed it up and get this done as soon as possible. The Dr. said 14 days minimum between treatments so I was trying to get round two started tomorrow, but he said it's safer and things go smoother if we start on a Monday rather than the weekend.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Went well today.

The blood transfusion went well today. I feel much better now. I was thinking today how fortunate we are to have the best medical system in the world. I was diagnosed on a Friday with an agressive cancer. Then, they have everying in place and immediately start the most effective treatment available - the next day! I am fortunate. Then, with follow up appointments like today, I can immidiately get a necessary transfusion that makes me feel great again. This gives me a lot of confidence that I will get through this.


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Got Blood?

My white count and platelet counts doubled in the past two days so that is good. But, red count went down just a bit (common after Chemo). That explains why I was napping often and frequently getting light headed for the past few days. So, I'll go in tomorrow morning for a 5 hour blood transfusion. After that, I should be feeling pretty normal. Still on schedule for the next 3-day hospital stay for Chemo next Monday. My weight is down a few pounds even though I have been eating a lot (the Dr said it's just the Chemo). - Or maybe it's that full head of hair I lost! They said it's better that I don't drive myself so Toshiko drove me today and will again tomorrow morning. So don't worry, Mom!


Tuesday, January 5, 2010


Not much to update on today. I feel about the same. I got up early, went out for a nice jog around the neighborhood, finished chopping all that wood, then mowed my lawn. ... OK ... so I didn't do any of that but I did think with the time on my hands today, it would have been nice to get out and do a few things. So; 17 of you have added yourselves as followers to this blog. Thank you. For those of you that have not added yourself as a follower, please do so - it's quite encouraging. Again, thank you everyone for all your thoughts and prayers.


Monday, January 4, 2010

Monday update.

Saw the Dr and they checked my blood counts today. My blood cell counts are finally starting to improve a bit, but still low. The Dr said it's enough though, to schedule the next round of Chemo. They'll check me again Wedndesday. If thing are still looking good, then I'll start a 3-day in-patient chemo treatment on Monday of next week. They could start Saturday but he said things are coordiated better on weekdays and so it's better to wait 'till Monday. Before starting Monday, the Dr. will perform the Intrathecal Cytarabine. This basically means they insert a big needle in my spinal cord inject Chemo. He assures me it's a quick procedure that is not painfull and the only side affect should be a little headache. Well - we'll see!


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Good sleep last night.

I had real good sleep last night. I am moving a little slow today, but basically feel fine. Scott and Jackie came over today and were a great help. Scott is getting some things fixed up in my room. He fixed the light and took measurements to put in a nice built-in shelf system which will help me keep everything organized. Jackie brought several meals that are just wonderful. We all sat and had a nice lunch together and they really helped me collect my thoughts. Jackie explained quite a bit about what to expect for side affects from the next Chemo treatment. The main concern from one of the drugs is often mouth sores. Scott & Jackie helped me make some decisions about how I will deal with my Job. This has been a concern for me and I hadn't really thought it through as much as they have so their advise is quite helpful. Tyler had fun today because he got to sit in Uncle Scott's "Big Truck"!


Saturday, January 2, 2010

I feel fine today.

This morning I went in for 8:00 am blood draws vital sign checks. There is still not much change to my blood cell counts. So, I didn't need a blood transfusion today. Basically we are still waiting for my white cell counts to come back up and then they will know more. This takes time - could be tomorrow, could be another week. Because I am doing fine and the counts are about the same, the Dr. decided to skip tomorrow's blood draw and do it on Monday at my 11:00 am appointment. So, I am still neutropenic 'till the white cells come back. This means I am extremely vulnerable to receiving any infection. So, I am kinda quarantined at home where Toshiko & I have set up a routines for keeping everything sanitized and I am basically staying downstairs most of the time while Toshiko & Tyler stay upstairs. Oh - and the hair starting coming out this morning so I had Toshiko shave it all off - so you can all start the bald jokes now. Not that I much hair left to begin with anyway!


Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Hi everyone, and Happy New Year. I started this blog that I will post on so you can always see whats going on with me in case we don't get a chance to talk or e-mail. Just log on to and you will see my most recent posts - which I'll try to do at least once a day.

For those of you that haven't heard, on Dec 18th I was diagnosed with an aggressive form Lymphoma. I was hospitalized immediately for 5 days of Chemotherapy treatment. After 2 days as an outpatient, I spiked a fever and was hospitalized for 3 more days.

I have been out of the hospital now for 3 days and feel great. They have me on Antiviral meds and several different Antibiotics because I am very vulnerable to infection right now. I have been going in for daily blood draws and vital sign checks as they are watching my counts very closely. They did a blood (platelet) transfusion yesterday and I don't go in today. I'll go in again tomorrow and the next day for blood draws and transfusion (if necessary). Then, meet with the Dr. again Monday. The 8 scheduled Chemo treatments each require a 4 day hospital stay and are scheduled to be at least 14 days apart but usually they are around 21 days apart. Just depends on how my body is reacting (my body has been reacting very good actually). So, I have 7 more rounds to go.