[stanford_status] Jan 11, Thu - No chemo, platelets too low - liver getting worse

John R Larsen john at larsen-family.us
Thu Jan 11 20:58:55 EST 2007

Hello Everyone,

Well, blood work shows that Stanford's platelet count is too low for 
chemo this week.  He is at 48,000.  The normal range is 140,000 to 
440,000.  His white blood count is also below normal.  It has been 
in the normal range the previous three times.  However, it is the 
platelet count driving the decision this week.

It is disappointing to have no chemo today, but not completely 
unexpected.  The protocol for gemcitabine that Dartmouth Hitchcock 
Medical Center (DHMC) follows is three weeks of treatment followed 
by one week off to let the body recuperate.  Time is so precious 
right now.  Taking a week off seems like a huge amount of time.  
There is so little time left.

The blood chemistry is also disappointing.  The ammonia at 72 is 
also higher this week.  Other chemistry numbers (ALP AST ALT) are 
also creeping higher and higher each week.  These are all indicators 
that Stanford's liver is struggling more and more.  This is all very 
distressing news.  He has had so many good days in a row.  We were 
expecting different results.

Stanford's next appointment is Thursday, Jan 18th, at 1:45 PM.  That 
will be round 5 of gemcitabine assuming counts are within acceptable 
range.  Dr. O'Shea said a CT scan will be done the following week 
sometime around Jan 23rd.  It hasn't been decided yet if that will 
be done in Nashua or back up at DHMC in Lebanon, NH.  The last CT 
scan was done in Nashua on Nov 21st during the emergency room crisis 
when Stanford almost died.  Dr. O'Shea is getting copies of all the 
past scans done in Nashua.  Once he has those he will decide where 
the CT scan should be done.  The results of that scan will be very 
important, showing whether or not the gemcitabine has been effective 
or not.  This "roller coaster" we're on is agonizing.

As always we continue to hope and pray.  We know that the Lord can 
do all things and that the final outcome is in His hands.  We thank 
you for your continued encouragement, support, and prayers.  


John R Larsen <john at larsen-family.us>

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