Courage for Kennedy – Journal

January 11, 2006

Please Pray For Kennedy

Category: Treatment – Melenie – 12:16 pm

Yes, it is true that we went home but as usual there is a snag. Because our insurance refuses to provide any care for Kennedy, we are unable to get any home health care. This means we went home with no TPN (nutrition/pump) for Kennedy and she is not eating or drinking. Between Sunday morning and Monday, she became dehydrated and was sleeping almost continuously. I took her to the clinic and they were able to give her fluids through her port. They also ran some blood work and found that her liver numbers were recovering but her white count was very high for a leukemia patient (over 11,000 and her ANC was 10,400-during treatment they like an ANC of 500-1500).

We were able to go home and spend another night in our bed but we needed to report to day treatment by 9am. Again, her liver counts were good this morning but her white count continues to rise. Please remember that her white count is where her cancer is and while they did not find any suspicious cells, an impending relapse appears to be inevitable. Her liver counts are good but still weak and could change at any time so there was some concern about giving her chemo; on the other hand, she would relapse without treatment and it was critical to give her chemo. There was some panic and confusion because Kennedy is so lethargic so they went ahead with the LP and intrathecal Methotrexate but held for a few hours on the other.

Kennedy also received an NG tube as we can give boluses of nutrition rather than rely on a pump, of course, her stomach is not handling that well. After consulting with several other oncologists, they decided that they must give Kennedy her full dose of IV Methotrexate and 1/2 dose of Vincristine. They are fully aware that her liver could decide to shut down again but at this point liver failure and relapse are equally horrible and most likely fatal. They would not expect her to recover from either one.

So where is our hope??? We are praying that her liver will process the doses with minimal complications despite having been non-functioning 2 weeks ago. Yes, that is it. They have us here at least overnight to ensure good hydration and hope that she will tolerate her nutrition (they are currently only pushing about 1 tsp./hour) and to give her supportive meds.

As of this writing, she has not tolerated the nut. or med. well and she seems to be uncomfortable. They are measuring her tummy and Dr. Norwood is insisting that the residents do not treat her but that the nursing staff contact him at home. We got our Christmas miracle, I just hope God is not running short tonight.


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