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part eccentric ... part fun .... stubborn .. but not stuck up ... very open to different views, ideas and possibilities ... varied interests ... engineer ... mba ... trying-to-be-a-good-entrepreneur ... ex-software ... ex-quality ... ex-tobacco ... ex-alcohol ... trying-to-be-ex-cancer
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Saturday, January 27, 2007

Chemo 2 - The anticipation story

Sometimes, and this always happens when you are expecting to be miserable, the anticipation is more nerve-wracking than the actual ordeal. One tends to worry mountains for a mole-hill size problem.

My second chemo is a good example. The dose was slated for Friday 26th of Jan...needless to say i was all worked up much before that. By Thursday evening i was all over the Internet- searching for more info on Methotrexate and Vincristine, the two chemo drugs. The net threw up some discouraging findings - between the two they can cause all possible complications in life, everything from skin rashes to death is a known side effect of these drugs. Being a smart manager, i reduced the problems to just 2 - managing nausea and Gastro-intestinal ulcers. Then began the story of Anticipation

Actually I have been steadily preparing myself for the chemo. I have already put myself on frequent small diets and have began drinking water frequently....on Thursday i moved into fifth gear, by evening i was drinking like fish.

Night came slowly and along came unending thoughts about the chemo. I got so anxious that I couldn't sleep. Some coughing came to my rescue, the nurse gave me some Benadryl (remember that potent intoxicating cough syrup of college days). One thirty was late time to go to sleep, but that was when i got the Benadryl and went into deep slumber.

Late to bed, late to rise. The nurse woke me at 6 and then again at 7 and asked me to get ready. I took a bath, had breakfast and then lay down on the bed, ready to start the drip, waiting for the chemo nurse. The chemo nurse didn't show up for a long time, it seems staff strength was low on republic day and I had to wait my turn. Every half an hour my ward nurse would come with reassuring words, telling me how the chemo nurse was just on her way. Obviously, chemo nurse had better things to do than putting me on Methotrexate. Being a patient (no puns here) guy i waited and waited.

Finally the chemo nurse did show up at 1 at noon. She tried to set up a line (needle with valves at one end, IV lines are attached to the valves at the end of this needle) , first attempt failed. She poked my hand again; finally a sound line was established. Establishing a sound line is extremely important. If, by mistake, the chemical goes into anything other than the blood vessel it can cause severe burns and pain.

Vincristine was given as a direct injection to the line. That got over in two minutes. Next I was given Methotrexate. It kept running down the IV for five long hours. I kept waiting for the drip to get over and nausea to show up. I was tethered to my bed by the IV lines and could not run to the loo to puke..so i kept a tub next to my bed for puking.

Five hours were past..Methotrexate got over, i was put on dextrose (hindi mey, glucose laga diya)...... the nausea never showed up...lucky me

I started feeling gifted....told the doctor...maybe my body type does not nauseate. He gave the knockout punch "nausea and GI ulcerations can strike on the second, third day or even later".

So here I am ...doing fine...and in perpetual anticipation of nausea....


Jim said...

Beautiful post. Beautiful.

bluesky said...

bhai wah...tum to iron man type waley lagtay ho

Vishweshwer M said...

Yesterday I was having supper at Pranshu's place and the topic drifted to you. Pranshu was referring to the link between us -- REC warangal -- (I belong to the 1989 batch) -- conveniently forgetting that he too was the link.

All I can say is this:

1. You will get well soon and have a great life ahead of you. I am confident
2. I would definitely want to meet you and have a long chat


Anonymous said...

I think u shud rename ur blog to Anjana Man-of-zeal

gorakh said...

Lv the way you have explained things. Kaash aap hamare teacher hote to mujhe ye din nahi dekhne padte!all the best buddy.

Sid said...

Lage raho Alam bhai...you will be fine soon....

Manjula said...

Talked to Juhi and at that point you were in Vellore. Couldn't contact you while I was in India. With your upbeat attitude, I am sure you can conquer Lymphoma. Talk to you sometime. Mail me your number. BTW, regarding the Cord Blood registry. It is the whole concept of 'banking for money' that I am against. I am totally for the Cord Blood donation and its use for research.

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