Sunday, June 13, 2010

UW Clinical Trial - Visit 6

I forgot to post about my last visit to UW.  In the end, it was a bit of a bust. I  hadn't read the protocol for awhile.  And, the study staff did not remind me of one important fact:  when I received my t-cells, I could not get Herceptin within six days of my t-cell infusions.  So, last Monday, I got Herceptin.  On Thursday, I informed the UW study group.  They replied that I couldn't get my Herminator-2 cells that day.


I kinda kicked myself - but on the other hand, I hadn't read the study protocol in a couple of months.  I also hadn't referred to the calendar of visits they gave me.  They also didn't say anything to me.  I don't, in fact, remember anybody saying that I couldn't take Herceptin when I got my Herminator-2 cells.  And, they didn't remind me that I couldn't last week or during leukapheresis. 

So, a miscommunication on their part. 

But they also said that I would've received the maximum dose of Herminator-2 cells for t-cell infusion #2.  Apparently, the lab is doing a great job in replicating my Herminator-2 cells - either that or I produced a good number of them or some combination of the two. 

So, they expect that I should get the maximum number of cells this week.  Which is about the same amount - or more - than some other people.  And, they could use the cells they made last week for study purposes.

So, all is not loss.

Except that I don't have Herminator-2 cells that my own body produced to kill the cancer.  Crap.

But I will make sure I get all the Herminator-2 cells that I can get this week.

Live and learn, eh?

In the meantime, there are indications that the first infusion of Herminator-2 cells are doing what they need to be doing.  The doctor, Dr. S., said that the swollen lymph nodes under my left armpit might get even more swollen.

They are.  The swelling is red.  I can feel the heat radiating from them.  Dr. S saw this and said that this is the reaction they want:  an inflammatory response, because the Herminator-2 cells were infused in my left arm and they traveled to the left lymph nodes, where they encountered cancer cells.

So, the inflammation (from what I gather) is caused from the Herminator-2 cells fighting the cancer cells that are in my lymph nodes.

Go get 'em. 


Liz Kreger said...

So this is going well, yes? That stinks about the whole Herceptin thing. Yeah, something should have been said. I don't know if its expected that cancer patients should be up to date and knowledgeable about all this stuff or if we should rely on the professionals to keep us informed on the dos and don'ts.

Dee said...

Well, as I told them, there is so much detail in this protocol that I couldn't get it all in on the first visit - which is the only time they might've told me about it and I don't remember it at all. And, generally speaking after that, one doesn't refer to the documents much. For me, anyway, I rely on the face to face communication. Plus I had a lot of other details to think about like hotels, confirmation numbers, parking, directions, etc. Anyway, I'll get my t-cells this week . . .