Friday, February 1, 2013

Starting the 2nd Part of Delayed Intensification

Austin enjoyed his week off from Chemo and school.  But all good things must end, so once again the Home Health nurse came to access Austin's port and draw blood.  We expected Austin's counts to come up and sure enough, his ANC was 1600.  So we packed up the kids and dogs and made the trip back up to Salt Lake. 
Getting his port accessed

Waiting for the nurse to come--all smiles
We had left Austin's port accessed from the day before to save Austin a poke.  Unfortunately, when the nurse tried to draw back blood the needle was found to be out of place.  So Austin had to put up with another needle poke to re-access his port.  
Getting his port accessed again--
Cleaning his port site--he hates this part
Finally drawing his labs
This time around the RTU where we normally have Austin's LP done was full, so they decided to try "conscious" sedation on Austin.  Dr. Eldridge came in to assess Austin and place some numbing cream on Austin's back.  Austin is so ticklish and made everyone giggle with him.

Dr. Eldridge laughing as she checks Austin's back

Austin is so ticklish!  Dr. Eldridge is checking
Austin's back for  his LP.

Getting checked out by Dr. Eldridge
We then moved over to the sedation room and Austin was hooked up to a monitor to watch his vital signs during the procedure.  He was given Ketamine and Versed for sedation.  Kevin and I were able to stay in the room this time.  It was over quickly and Austin began to wake up.
Waiting to get his LP.  Hooked up to so many things!
Getting his LP
Dr. Wright checking Austin after his LP
Still sleepy, this is a goofy kid
They warned us that Austin would be very loopy and dizzy for awhile.  The first thing he said to me when he opened his eyes was that I had two heads.  Of course we had to record his silliness.

We moved back over to the Clinic and Austin received a fluid bolus and his Chemotherapy.  This particular drug (Cytoxan), is very hard on the kidneys so the extra fluid is to help wash it out of his body.  Austin passed the time by playing xbox with Kevin.

Getting a bolus of fluid--at 999 ml/hr.  Super fast!
Passing the time getting chemo by playing xbox games with Dad
So that was day 1 of the 2nd part of Delayed Intensification.  This phase is 30 days long.  Austin will be given 3 new chemo drugs.  The Cytoxan was today, Ara-C is given IV for 4 days then off 3 days then given 4 more days.  Thioguanine is an oral chemo drug that Austin will get daily for 2 weeks.  All three of these are intense chemo drugs that will cause lots of fun side effects.  It's likely that Austin's counts will drop again in the next couple weeks.  But it's one step closer to maintenance so we will do our best to get through it.


  1. What a beautiful, sweet boy! (you don't have to tell him I said beautiful :) ) Thanks for putting up a video. It was fun to hear your (Amy) voice again. You sound exactly the same! Good luck with the coming weeks. It sounds like they may be even more challenging. I hope the side effects stay at a minimum, and the time passes quickly chemo-wise, and slowly magic moment-wise. What good parents you are, and strong kids you have!