My Relapse Story: Post Stem Cell Transplant

Diagnosed Hodgkins Lymphoma Stage 4B 14th Feb 2014
Post Stem Cell Transplant can last from 16 days to whenever. It is basically the time from when you have the Transplant to when your blood counts return along with immune system etc..

Please keep in mind when reading this that Chemotherapy & Stem Cell Transplants effect everyone in a different way, this blog tells you how I was effected by the treatment

Readers discretion is strongly advised 

Firstly I need to clear up a few things. I relapsed back in April from HLD Stage 4 the biospy taken at the time time showed cancer Cell mutation therefore it was active in new sites and posed an immediate danger to me. The only course open to me was a Stem Cell Transplant, but even for this I had to be a candidate, which lucky enough I was. Visibly you would have considered me to be fit & strong but inside all hell was breaking loose. There are people reading this blog who are also victims of cancer, some are early Stage some are similar late stage like me but please keep in mind that the therapy I have had and currently getting relates to HLD & NHL and self donor other cancers may have variations in therapy. This is also very individual as Chemotherapy responds differently to each person. It is properly the main reason why medical teams are reluctant to discuss side effects prior to commencing Chemotherapy regimes.

Day Plus 2

For the first time I have warned readers to be careful reading this. Basically right now it’s Day Plus 2 for me Sat 15th July 2017. I have had a very unsettled night and for the first time during any regime I came close to vomiting, I have been so lucky to avoid this during ABVD, radiotherapy, ICE and BEAM but it nearly got me. The medical team have attacked this hard and fast and by mid-day things were more settled. But I have diarrhoea, this is a known side effect of the overall therapy. Basically everything from my mouth all the way to my arse is regenerating as BEAM killed both the production of and regeneration of my body’s ability to maintain and control cells. It is not nice but I am proud to say at this minute that I am no longer full of shite. My mouth feels very raw and I am having difficulty swallowing. I am now on full IV drips

So basically I no longer walk through the valley of the shadow of death I have entered the gates of hell with all its fury dragging Mr Hodgkins with me & not for the first time. I don’t care how long this is gone to take but this time Hodgkins is gonna burn. And as for Death, another time and place maybe.


Day Plus 3 Sun 16th

Had the professor in with me this morning and it looks like the ulcers and damage to my throats will peak tomorrow. My mouth is now swollen and basically soar. Difficulty swallowing continues and diarrhoea continues, this is simply the colon flushing itself out. As always the staff here in St James are fantastic, everyone of them.

Mental health

I have been asked in an email about mental health a subject that I covered in a previous blog but they asked if I could revisit this topic. So yes I will. The build up to the Stem Cell Harvest was challenging but I was okay with it. There were a lot of anxious times waiting for results etc. But we ploughed on regardless. Anita dropped me in Dublin on Monday 3rd as we thought I would be admitted on the forth, which became the 5th after blood test. On Monday 3rd I got to visit my Mum and Anita had lunch with me before leaving for Cork. As I watched he leave it dawned on me that for the first time in years I did not have a car to drive. So I ended up cutting the grass & weeding the driveway. But the end of the day I was knackered. Up early next morning in a taxi to St James, and home after the failed blood test. So I sat in the kitchen rather disappointed at not been admitted and that’s when I remember saying to myself “What the fuck are you about to do” we all knew it wasn’t going to be a picnic after all we were fully aware that without this I would be dead by now, with it came poor prognosis & difficult treatment plans. I had been given the opportunity to walk away that morning… by this I mean that hospitals in Ireland can only do procedures with our permission & that form was in my pocket. I then commenced to clean the house. My only hated fear about St James was the length of time I would be in hospital (anywhere from 4 weeks to whenever and that’s assuming it works) I decide late that night that there was no reason to stop. The consent form is a brain teaser as your basically telling the team to go ahead and kill me.

So here I am 12 days in with no regrets, we will not know for weeks if this worked but everything is going better than planned. All I have to do is stay positive which is a quality I have. Even knowing tomorrow is going to be worse is fine “Bring it fucking on”

I’m not religious even though I have my own beliefs but a real close friend of mine about a year ago gave me this book – it has not left me once since I got it Michael

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E-Mail ian@hlai.ie
Linkedin Profile: www.linkedin.com/ian-f-doherty-pc
Facebook: www.facebook.com/hlai.ie
Go Fund Me: www.gofundme.com/Ian-Doherty
Donation Account
I have a Go Fund Me donation site available. If at all possible could you please leave a small donation, funds are used to help pay medical expenses & maintain/update this site
www.gofundme.com/Ian-Doherty

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