And so it begins… PCV Chemotherapy.
I should say “began” since I actually already started on Oct 23rd.
I’m scheduled for 6 cycles, with each cycle lasting about 6 weeks.
On Oct 23rd, I downed 230mg on CCNU right before bed. This is the “C” in PCV. Nausea and fatigue have been the biggest side effects from this one but I only take it one time during the 6-week cycle. So I’m done for now! It seems to have a long lasting effect as I’ve felt nauseous and more tired than usual ever since I took it. Considering I’m still on my seizure meds I guess that’s understandable. Taking multiple meds that booth have the same side effects can have a compounding effect I guess.
Now I don’t need to do anything until Oct 30th when I go up to Huntsman Hosp and get an IV infusion of Vincristine. This, I’m guessing, is where the “V” comes in. I remember that from the Sesame Street days. They say that process should only take about 15mins. I’ll take this twice during the cycle. Once on the 30th and then again on Nov 20th.
Also on Oct 30th, I take 100mg of Procarbazine right before bed. I’ll take this every night before bed for the next 9 days.
After the Procarbazine I take a week off before the 2nd Vincristine infusion on Nov 20th.
Then it’s about a week and a half off before the next cycle repeats.
I’ll keep you posted, should be fun.
Nov 24th – First cycle is now complete and I get a Dr’s visit on Dec 3rd. All in all it was pretty uneventful. The first Vincristine infusion took about an hour. I was originally told 15 mins but that didn’t include the blood draw, analyzing the blood, getting the OK from the pharmacist, the mixing up the Vincristine, then injecting it through the IV.
That same night I started the Procarbazine pills right before bed. The lasted every night for the next 9 nights and pretty much sucked huevos rancheros. It made me sick, miserable, and tired. I was glad when that was over.
Then my 2nd Vincristine infusion was on Nov 20th. I didn’t think much of it going in but it was not as smooth as the first time and took 3 hours. The first nurse had a hard time finding my vein. She poked me once, missed it and called in a second nurse. The second nurse lectured Jamie and I about the benefits of getting a port installed in my chest. That’s another procedure and one that I’m not really interested in. So we asked tons of questions that the nurse didn’t expect. Then she grabbed some poor lady and brought her over to show us her port and how easy it is for the nurses to access.
Well I’m sure it’s easier for the nurses to access but I don’t want a constant reminder everytime I look in the mirror that I’m sick. So we sat there and debated that forever. They even called my doctor to see if he could come over and talk some sense into me. That pretty much backfired on them as he couldn’t see why I would want a port.
So they finally stuck me, drew my blood, and injected the chemo. I’m pretty sure she made it as painful as possible. It’s too bad because I’ve been really impressed with Huntsman up until this point. The whole thing took 3 hours.
The nurse showed me my bloodwork results. My white blood cells and platelets have dropped significantly so we’ll see what the doc says about that.