At University Hospital Feb. 2011

At University Hospital Feb. 2011
February 11, 2011 at University of Utah Hospital

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cycle 3 . . .

Cycle 3, Day 1: Yesterday, just before finishing his treatment, Phil had a bad reaction to oxaliplatin. I had walked down to University of Utah Hospital to pick up copies of Phil's records when I got a call from Phil saying, "I'm going down. I'm going down."

"Tell your nurse," I kept telling him. He said a nurse was with him.

I took off immediately, leaving the clerk standing there making our copies. It took me atleast 20 minutes to get back to Huntsman, where I found Phil heaving violently and throwing up. The nurses knew just what to do and pushed an antiemetic--Ativan--through his IV. It worked immediately.

Our nurse said, "I'm afraid he's going to be a cheap date tonight!"

While Ativan acts to stop nausea, it also causes extreme drowniness, unsteadyness, and forgetfulness. I'm not sure about the forgetfulness because there was no chance to test him (What is your name? What year is this? Who's the president?). Phil fell asleep the minute we got in the car. I could vouch for the unsteadyness, however. Phil was trembling and weak and I had to have help to get him out of the car and into bed, where he slept soundly from 6:00 p.m. on.

At 4:00 a.m. I couldn't believe it when Phil got up and did a news broadcast, then worked via computer till 8:00 a.m. before he went back to bed. Today he has enjoyed the rare luxury of resting in our palatial guest suite at Tom and Barbara's where Phil spent the day watching his favorite TV shows--anything on Fox News (with the exception of Huckabee). And Barbara made him delicious banana bread. Tom and Barb really pamper us!

Here's some highlights from yesterday:

1. Our daughter Liz flew in from South Carolina with her family and came straight to Huntsman to visit her dad. I was happy she got there after the crisis, but before I had to try and maneuver her dad to the car by myself after he refused a wheelchair!

2. Our son Adam and my sister Wendy came to visit earlier in the day. It's always good to see them while we're there.

3. We met some amazing people. Gary and Colleen of Rigby, Idaho are probably seventy-ish with an amazing sense of humor, despite Gary's rare t-cell lymphoma (diagnosed in 2007)--the only case at Huntsman. Colleen is a very petite lady who has Gary keep his admitting bracelet on so if she gets pulled over for having a self-described, lead foot, she can show the officer she has a good reason.

4. We also met Deborah of Big Sky, Montana who has a very rare brain tumor (diagnosed in 2008), one of only seven known in the world. She's also had lymphoma (cancer of the lymph) twice. Deborah is probably the most positive person I've ever met. Through a constant smile and laughing eyes, she explained that she has had 5 brain surgeries, radiation, no end of chemo, and subsequent "drain bammage!"

4. We were really excited to see old friends, Sterling, Dov, Suzanne, and Dave--all such positive folks, too! I was especially glad Dave was there when we came in. We missed getting his blog address last time:

Dave is a big scouter and is planning to take a 50 mile hike this summer with his 13 year old son. Dave explained that his colon cancer had spread beyond his liver and he now has three tumors on his spine. He said he hoped that wouldn't stop him from carrying his backpack. In all seriousness, Colleen said, "You need a jackass!" We all laughed so hard to hear this tiny little lady make that suggestion! Pretty smart, actually.

So there you have it . . . another chemo cycle in the life of the invincible Phil Mueller. Chemo might knock him down, but it can't keep him down for long!

1 comment:

  1. Our thoughts and prayers are with you Phil. Keep on keeping on!
    Scott and Marly