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catwoman6
Posts: 20
Joined: Dec 2008

Does anybody live in the Pittsburgh area? I need to get a stem cell transplant and am torn between which hospital to choose. My doc right now says Shadyside. I got a second opinion on my disease and that doc deals with West Penn Hospital. I don't know what to do. I wish it would just go away!!!!!!!!!!

lisajarrod
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2009

I too have to have a stem cell transplant. I live in the Altoona/Bedford Pa area. I will be going to West Penn for the transplant. I wish it would just go away too. I just had a 5 day regiment of mini-BEAM chemo. Have you had any pre transplant chemo? Let me know where you decide to go. It would be nice to have someone to talk to that knows exactly what this is like. Best of luck! (to all of us!)

catwoman6
Posts: 20
Joined: Dec 2008

Hi Lisa: That's a long ways from home isn't it? For you to go to West Penn in Pittsburgh? I actually found a doc at Hillman which deals with Shadyside Hospital. I heard both are good hospitals. I've never heard of mini-BEAM chemo. Right now I'm getting pre transplant chemo called ICE. I had 3 treatments 2 weeks ago and have to start 3 more next week. Right now I have something going on with my throat. It's all red and sore and now under my jaw is hurting. My doc just called me in a Zpac. Some kind of antibiotics. I don't even know what they are. After this next round of chemo, I'll have to wait approx 21 more days and then get a PET/CT and then meet with my doc and see what he says. I really don't want to get this stem cell transplant. It sounds so horrible. And then for the following year you really have to watch what you do. Can't clean out litter boxes or pick up dog poo. And that's rough around my house. I have cats and a dog. And I believe I read somewhere that they don't even want you to go grocery shopping. Have you heard things like that? They told me that I would be in the hospital for at least a month following the transplant. You?? Who is your doc at West Penn? What kind of cancer do you have? I have Hodgkins Lymphoma. Already been thru 12 treatments of ABVD. That didn't work. So here I am again. Trying to get rid of this stuff inside of me. Well, I have to go and pick up my prescription. Best of luck to you too. Write back when you get a chance. Thanks!

blueroses's picture
blueroses
Posts: 527
Joined: Jul 2008

Hello to both of you. I was diagnosed with NHL 20 years ago. I was first given regular CHOP treatment (indicates the drugs used in the chemo) and then a year and a half later it came back and I opted for the stem cell transplant. Mine was autologus meaning it was my own marrow, not a donor, don't know if you are getting a donor or not. Anywho here I am 20 years later with no evidence of disease and after so long they consider me cured. Now no doubt the treatments have changed in some ways but if they could cure me 18 years ago with me being one of the first group of stem cell transplant patients for NHL then by now they probably have much better treatment protocols I would think. Just wanted to tell you that so you can see that indeed cancer can be cured. All the best of luck with your transplants.
Blessings, Blueroses.

lisajarrod
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2009

Thank you so much for sharing your story. I helps tremendously to know it works. I believe I will be doing autologus also. I look forward to 20 years in the future to let someone else know that it works too!

lisajarrod
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2009

Hi Catwoman, Yes it is about 2 hours from home. It is where my local oncologist recommended and really the closest facility that does it. My doctor at West Penn is Dr. Lister. I also have (actually had. I like to put it in past tense.) Hodgkins Lymphoma. And I also had 12 treatments of ABVD. A year later, it was back. He debated on giving me ICE or mini-BEAM. I had to be hospitalized 5 days to receive it. It also was pre-transplant chemo. I had mouth sores and sore throat, and a sore spot under my jaw! It was all chemo related. It lasted about a week and a half. I will be having a PET scan in about 2 weeks. When it shows I'm in remission then they will set me up for the transplant. I don't even know all the details of this transplant yet. The said I would be there at least 3 weeks. I just want to go and get it over with. I have 3 children at home ages 10,12,14. The hardest part for me will be not seeing them. Please keep me updated on your progress and I will do the same. My email address is lisajarrod@embarqmail.com. It might be easier to keep it touch that way.
Thanks,
Lisa

catwoman6
Posts: 20
Joined: Dec 2008

Thanks Lisa and Blue Roses. I just spoke with my nurse today and she was going over the details of the transplant. She really put my mind at ease. It sounds alot worse than it is. (per my nurse) She told me to stop reading info on the internet about it. Blue Roses, thanks for the words of encouragement. Lisa, that WILL be us someday. Well, I still have this darn sore throat and mouth sores. They did prescrib for me a Zpack. Doesn't seem like its doing anything. Maybe tomorrow I'll feel better. Lisa, if you don't mind, I am going to email you so we can talk a little more. Thanks to both of you for everything.

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