Wednesday, February 25, 2009

2-25-09: Blast Count is Dropping

Sarah hugs Asa at the hospital

Sarah began the alternate chemo therapy approach on Saturday. After 4 days of treatment the blast percentage in her blood has gone down. The doctors are pleased she is responding to the treatment.

Sarah recieved one dose of Vincristine earlier this week. She is going to receive her last steroid (Dexamethasone) dose tomorrow. She will also be receiving oral Methotrexate and L-Asparaginase tomorrow. The current plan is to add on Dasatinib a couple of days after the Dexamethasone ends. The doctors are targeting releasing Sarah Saturday.

The treatment she is on is a slightly modified version of the treatment that got Sarah into remission in December. The biggest change is delaying the Dasatinib until the Dexamethasone ends. The doctors are watching her blood pressure closely and medicating her for hypertension from the beginning of treatment this time. Sarah's encephalopathy in December immediately followed a hypertension event during a blood transfusion. Most of the drugs Sarah took in December and now can cause encephalopathy too.

Sarah's doctors feel they have a handle on keeping her stable during her current drug combination. We feel they do too, but are still quite uneasy about the encephalopathy. Frankly, I don't want to learn what different chemotherapy drugs do, how they work or the likely and unlikely side effects. Learning these things is not an encouraging process. But, I'm her father and I'll do whatever is required to protect and provide for her. The biggest single thing Susan and I can do for her is to pray for her, but learning about treatment options and advocating for her is essential.


Jacob recieves Sarah's curious George for his 16th birthday Feb. 14.

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