It is with a very heavy heart that I write this final entry and bid my lovely Baby Girl goodbye. Dawn passed away last night at a little after 6:00. [...]
Dawn Capitain - Journal
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Dawn went in to get her chemo administered yesterday and was told by the nurse that the doc wanted to meet with her. Dawn was under the impression that she wasn't going to see the doctor and she expressed this to the nurse, but the nurse said that the doctor needed to see her. The doctor went over Dawn's blood labs with her and let her know that her liver enzyme levels, which up until now have been pretty much perfect, have become elevated. There was one in particular that the doctor was concerned about and stated that there were two possibilities behind the elevation; either she had an infection, or one of her ducts were being blocked by a tumor. The doctor prescribed antibiotics for now, but will be keeping an eye on that particular level to see if the numbers change or not. Dawn also let the doctor know that she has set a goal to make it to my birthday in September. Dawn said that the doctor said that September is a good month for a birthday, but the look was more like, "we will try to get ya there". [...]
Ok, yeah, I know. You are probably asking, "Home from where?" Well, Dawn landed herself in the hospital Thursday evening, and now, well, now she's home!! I actually intended on blogging Thursday evening, and even yesterday evening, but the exhaustion from stress was overwhelming and so the blogging didn't get done.
Answer: Because then it would be just news with no subjective basis for comparisson.
Any way, it's been a while since our last post, and Dawn had a doctor's appointment today that needed to be shared. Over the past month or so, Dawn has been feeling ok with the exception of a pressure like pain in the diaphragm area of her abdomen. She saw the doctor a couple of weeks ago and was told that her liver was slightly swolen and that her liver enzyme levels were slightly elevated. The doctor ordered up a CT scan. Dawn had the CT scan administered last Monday, and today we got the results. Dawn's cancer is progressing. One new spot was found on her lungs and the tumors have grown within her liver. In all honesty, this was a relief to hear compared to what Dawn and I were thinking we were going to hear. Based on how Dawn has been feeling over the course of the last month, we were both certain that her pancreas had developed some major sized tumors, and that that was what was pressing up against her diaphragm. It turns out, the chemo has created an irritation in her esophogus, and the pain she is feeling is due to an inflamed esophogus, not a tumor ridden pancreas. Soooo, not the best of news, but not the worst either.[...]
Well, it's been about a month and a half now since Dawn started her new chemo regiment. Her take on it ... definately a lot easier on her than her first chemo regiment, but a bit more harsh than her second chemo regiment. Her energy levels are still up, but she does fatigue quickly. And the nausea is there, but not near as brutal as her first chemo regiment. [...]
Dawn started her new chemo regiment today. It is called Irinotecan and is being combined with another drug called 5FU. Unfortunately, the 5FU is a 48 hour infusion and so she still has to wear a fanny pack for a couple of days each week. Thankfully, this regiment, like the last one is one week on and one week off. So far, Dawn has been handling it well. Time will tell as far as what kind of side effects pop up. We were initially told that she will probably lose her hair again, but today was told that she might not. We were also told that she will probably experience nausea, but, as I stated before, time will tell. [...]
Well, since the last time I blogged, Dawn has been doing amazingly well!! The Folfox chemo regiment has been treating Dawn relatively well. Her energy levels are up, she's not constantly nauseous, she's now got a beautiful head of hair... unfortunately, the chemo is not working. [...]
Well, today Dawn started her new chemo regiment. We were really hoping that she would be starting tomorrow, because that would have meant that she was potentially getting the immunotherapy drug along with her chemo. The fact that she started today means that she is definitely not getting the immunotherapy, BUT she is still getting a hefty chemo cocktail which is comprised of three different chemo drugs which they are calling "FOLFOX". Two of the drugs are administered at the cancer center over a two hour period of time. The third gets to come home with her via a fanny pack and is administered over the course of a 48 hour period of time. Dawn will get that one removed from her port on Friday. This particular regiment will give her a week of rest, and then a week of chemo for the next foreseeable future. Being that Dawn is still part of the test study, there will be frequent monitoring, including blood tests and CT scans. [...]