A couple of people have mentioned to me that they haven’t seen any updates here. And that’s just a case of “no news is good news”. We saw Dr Rossetti yesterday. Beth reported that she is feeling “fine, wonderful”. And that’s about the way it goes these days. Of course, she is not totally well yet. Not anywhere close. She spent six months last year with her blood being eaten away by leukemia and Vidaza, followed by a “stem cell transplant” that was a complete shock to her system (“intensive chemo, full-body radiation, then an infusion of new DNA that might or might not be able to co-exist with her present system). Months in the hospital with a mightily suppressed immune system and some of the nastiest infections I’ve ever seen.
It’ll take her a long time before she gets anything near her old strength back. She really is skinny. The Lovenox injections have left her with some pretty bad bruising in her abdomen area. As much as I tried to be careful, they are nasty, painful little shots. The purpose of injecting them into the abdomen is to get them into some fatty tissue that won’t feel much pain, but she is just too skinny to have much fatty tissue left.
Our 25th anniversary is coming up on June 1. We are going to take a couple of days off and go to, of all places, a “cancer survivors camp”. It’ll be out in the woods, but there are supposedly all the amenities. (This has not yet been confirmed, but it’s what we’re planning. I’ll have more on this later).
One of my Facebook friends recently lost his wife to leukemia. And one of his Facebook posts said simply, “I wish I’d held her hand more”. I am very conscious that I could have lost her, but did not lose her. Right now, my wish is simply to hold her hand as much as I can.
I know I’ve done a good job if she doesn’t feel the pain. I don’t always get it. One of the issues is that she’s lost so much weight. I’m supposed to “pinch an inch” or more, and inject the Lovenox into the fatty tissue. Well, she hasn’t got much left. But tonight, she almost didn’t feel it. It’s a mercy.
We’ve only got to go till the 14th or 15th with these injections.
The photo here shows my hands, giving a Lovenox injection to my wife, in her belly. It’s supposed to go into a fleshy, fatty area, so the stomach is deemed as the best place to do it. (There’s some discussion as to whether it goes in the stomach or the love handles, but we’re in the same general area).
The Lovenox (enoxaparin ) is “is used to prevent blood clots in the leg in patients who are on bedrest or who are having hip replacement, knee replacement”, and it’s also used to prevent clots in people who have already got them from build-up on a PICC line.
Here’s how it’s done:
Your health care provider will teach you how to give yourself the shot or arrangements will be made for someone else to give you the shot. Enoxaparin is usually injected in the stomach area. You must use a different area of the stomach each time you give the shot. If you have questions about where to give the shot, ask your health care provider. Each syringe has enough drug in it for one shot. Do not use the syringe and needle more than one time. Your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider will tell you how to throw away used needles and syringes to avoid accidental injury. Keep syringes and needles out of reach of children.
To inject enoxaparin, follow these instructions:
- Wash your hands and the area of skin where you will give the shot.
- Look at the syringe to be sure the drug is clear and colorless or pale yellow.
- Take the cap off the needle. Do not push any air or drug out of the syringe before giving the shot unless your health care provider tells you to.
- Lie down and pinch a fold of skin between your finger and thumb. Push the entire needle into the skin and then press down on the syringe plunger to inject the drug. Hold onto the skin the entire time you give the shot. Do not rub the site after you give the shot.