4/28/16 – I met with Dr. Rowley today and learned a lot more about my situation with MDS. It all points to chromosome 20. Basically the bone marrow biopsies are showing a 20q abnormality. The crazy thing is that I am feeling better than I have in a very long time.
With that said, as long as my counts stay good we will take a wait and see approach and hold off doing anything for about 6 months. At that point I will have another bone marrow biopsy. Of course if my counts drop before then (which can be a sign that the MDS is progressing) I will have a bone marrow biopsy sooner. If this does progress it seems that the best treatment would be for me to have another stem cell transplant… but let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. For all I know I could have a clean bone marrow biopsy in 6 months.
In discussing why this 20q abnormality is happening to me one thing that has been speculated is that it could be donor derived. This doesn’t mean my donor had MDS. It means that if my donor had chemo therapy that there would be a good possibility that he would have developed MDS afterwards. How crazy is that???
Another thing that has come up over the last two weeks is that I have an itchy rash on my neck, arms, chest and back. It is not a bad enough to be considered GVHD but it is bad enough to be a reason to delay treating me with PD-1 (Opdivo). Apparently PD-1 and GVHD do not play nice together. If there is the slightest chance that my rash is GVHD then it is better to play it safe than sorry.
So… I think my word of the day is “Crazy”. I guess it’s fair to say that things are never boring with me.
I have a follow up with Dr. Rowley in two weeks on Friday, May 13th. Friday the 13th???
I’m sure nothing crazy could happen…. Right?
Check out this song by Jars of Clay called “Crazy Times”
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
More to come…