Thursday, June 14, 2007

Latest Email Message

Dear Friends and Family,

Chris officially began the clinical trial on Monday this week. She’s been working so hard to get into a position where she is eligible for it. That’s why she had the chemoembolization a couple months back. It was very successful. I’ve been trying to keep my blog updated as best I can but thought that I would put a brief email together for those that don’t get a chance to check it out very often. The trial is already taking its toll on us. It’s very tiring going to Baltimore each day but we know that it is worth it and that keeps us moving!

Here is a link that explains a little bit about exactly what the trial is and what it’s trying to accomplish.

Chris had chemo (Cyclophosphamide)on Monday. Tuesday she had a series of 12 vaccine injections (4 in each thigh, 4 in one arm). This is the vaccine that is being created and tested to see if it aids the body in fighting off the cancer cells. The vaccines hurt while being administered but Chris tolerated it pretty well. Wednesday was a quick trip to Hopkins for a blood draw. This draw goes to the research group for analysis and must be done there. Today will be another trip for the same thing. Friday will be a blood draw along with some skin biopsies to see what the reaction is to the vaccine. Oh yeah, and Saturday is another blood draw… 6 days to the hospital.

Next week is another chemo treatment (Doxorubicin) on Tuesday. It’s a different treatment than last Monday and is used in conjunction with the chemo to help kill the cells while the vaccine works it’s magic in helping the body fight off the disease on it own. As we all know the body can fight off some really mean diseases. Sometimes it just needs a little help! The following week (26th) is a blood draw but we can do it locally as they are just getting the blood counts. The following week (3rd) is the same thing. On the 11th of July we’ll meet with her oncologist and determine the next start date. Then do it all over again.

As you can see this has put a real damper on our summer! We were planning a vacation trip somewhere out of the country this summer with the kids, but Chris’s oncologist recommended that we not leave the country. Also, we only have a couple of weeks to squeeze things in. The 2 blood draws for counts can be done anywhere in the country so that helps. We’ve learned to cope with schedules the last 3 years and know that everything takes a backseat to Chris’s treatment. Everything has been okay so far and the kids have really been helpful as well.

I can’t begin to express our gratitude to everyone for all their support, prayers, dinners, donations, candy, house cleanings, and emails The list goes on and on. It really, really, does help us out. Rest assured that we are doing okay right now and will continue to stay the course. This August will be 3 years. Hard to believe. Thank you so much for the love and support. We can’t do this without your help.

Frederick, MD

P.S. As an update, I wanted to thank everyone who made a donation to the Avon Breast Cancer Walk this year. Our good friend and neighbor, Cheryl, raised over $3,000 this year. Her other teammates did equally as well. This year the DC walk raised over $7.4 Million! $1 Million was immediately granted to the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Research Program at Johns Hopkins. The very same center that Chris has been going to for a year now. We were there on a beautiful Sunday afternoon and watched the participants cross the finish line. NOTHING can express the feeling that comes across knowing that so many people care enough to do this. Thank you again to everyone. Click to see what’s being raised and where it’s going.

No comments: