Monday, March 28, 2011

chemo hot flash, breast plate pain, pulmonary happiness

Continuing my discovery of creative ways that my body can feel, last night I dipped my toe into waters normally reserved for menopausal women and had a nice (?) chemo hot flash. My GI tract wasn't too happy last night and I was just sitting in front of the computer looking at some Android code. Suddenly, I felt hot. Went from feeling normal to my head sweating in about 30 seconds. Flushed, feverish, the works. Got up to go take my temperature and standing up didn't help matters any. Took my temperature and it was fine. Wow, that was not a great feeling. Lied down in bed for a few minutes and the symptoms passed, got a shower and did a bit of meditation before bed. Got through that little event without any permanent trauma so we'll just chalk that up to experience, eh?

The next step last night was that I got to experience some breast plate pain. Initially I thought it was heartburn from the chemo but now I'm thinking that it's because the monster chemo is digging into the bone marrow in my breast plate, killing all my slightly unpredictable white blood cells that are the cause of all this craziness. It kind of feels like a burp that won't come up. I noticed this because I had also had some breast plate discomfort when I was generating the 2.39 million stem cells last week. I believe this is just a transient discomfort so no big deal.

The final change for the better I noticed last night is that I'm breathing better. At the height of my GI discomfort it was a little uncomfortable to belly-breathe because I had so much gas in my stomach. Given my experience last summer with pulmonary issues and the fact that the BCNU med in the BEAM protocol can cause some pulmonary toxicity I've been very sensitive to any changes in my lung function. My PFT #s continue to be great so that's good news but it's still scary when you don't feel like you can breathe completely normally. But with the slight improvement in my GI trace over the last 48 hours I feel like my breathing has gotten back to normal.

Had a pretty good night of sleep last night although I was up at 3:30 am doing e-mail with some coworkers that are in England on business. Guess I'm a bit anxious about getting my stem cells back! I don't know if smart phones are the best or worse thing that ever happened to insomniacs but it's certainly convenient to be able to roll over, pick up the phone and browse the web for a few minutes in the middle of the night without disturbing (too much!) your bed partner.

Well, that's the quick recap from last night. This morning we're starting the stem cell transplant process. I'll take lots of pics and post later today once I've got some of my little guys back inside of me!


  1. Hot flashes are no fun! Hope the drip is going well and your body is throwing a welcome-home parade for those heroic cells that are returning to save the day.

  2. Ugh - hot flashes. Hang in there! Hope your pain goes away quickly!