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Bone Marrow Transplant for Progressive

stephany25
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2009

Hello,
My name is Stephany, 26 yrs old and I was dianoged with Stage 2a hodgkin's disease back in May. I began Chemotherapy and have went through 3 mts of it. The first scan the results were amazing, 50% decrease in the 14 cm mass in my chest, I just got a second scan done and the mass went up from 7 cm to 9cm, so a small increase. Needless to say I am very scared. I did take a hard fall out of bed one night and the doc at first thought it could just be inflamed, but then dicussed with several other doctors and thinks that it progressed and that I should get a bone marrow transplant. He said he is doing emergency radiation to my chest for 4 wks, then a really strong chemo that will knock everything out of me, meaning I will have to get the bone marrow transplant to replinish my body. I feel like my world is falling aprt, I thought stage 2 would be easier to beat then this. Has anyone else had a similar experience they could share? A bone marrow transplant, or any insight on this? I am going to the James Cancer Center at the Ohio State University, which is close to me, to have this done. I heard its excellent. I am just scared to death and I have a 4mth old daughter, just got married last year, and now this had to happen. I am staying strong but its so hard sometimes.
Thanks,
Stephany

judyy
Posts: 19
Joined: Jun 2009

Stephany,
I have non hodgkins So I know nothing about Hodgkins treatment. When I finished my chemo my doctor said she should probably due a transplant but I was not strong enough. I was glad and sad ? you know?
I know you are scared I am so sorry. I wish I could say something that would take the fear away but I can't.
I am sure the James Cancer Center is excellent being attached to an university.
I am glad you have a husband to help you.
I know it is easier said than done but try to relax take deep breaths and enjoy every moment you can.
I will be praying for strenght and peace for you.
Judy

AJHosk
Posts: 10
Joined: Aug 2009

Girl hang in there, I have gone through a stem cell tansplant which is pretty much like a bone marrow transplant but a little different and I will not lie it is hard but it does work. You just have to stay positive and fight so your little girl will grow up with her mommy and your hubby will have his wife. When things were so hard that I felt like giving up I just looked at my kids and knew that I HAD to be there to see them grow up. Stay strong and do lots of praying and god will get you through.

god bless
allison

stephany25
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2009

IF you don't mind me asking, what stage were you in and why did they require you to get a stem cell transplant? I was told it is pretty much the same thing as BMT. I am currently doing radiation to my chest/neck for 4 wks and then they will check those results and do some really strong salvage chemo. Is this similar to what you had? If they are replacing most of the bone marrow I am not sure why the prognosis is not much better. I actually hate looking at figures like 50%, its discouraging, sad thing is, I feel fine. I don't feel that sick at all, still have an appetitie, etc. thanks for any info.
Steph

AJHosk
Posts: 10
Joined: Aug 2009

No problem, I actually had stage 4B, I had enlarged lymphnodes in my chest and small nodles of cancer in my actual lung it had also spread to lymphnodes down by my liver. I went through 12 cycles of ABVD went into remission but them came out 3 mths later. I think the reason they did the stem cell transplant is because the cancer was not in my actual marrow it was just messing with my lymph system I don't really understand it all myself. I do know though that so far it has worked and I pray everyday it stays that way. If for some reason it doesn't because my chances of it coming back are about 60% chance that it does I think the next step is to have a donor BMT. I will keep you in my prayers please let me know how things go.

allison

Herebyfaith
Posts: 1
Joined: Oct 2008

I was diagnosed almost three years ago @ the age of 24. I had stage 4, tumors everywhere. I did the ABVD, then ICE, and had an autologous stem cell transplant. The hardest part of the process is dealing with all the side effects of the intense chemo and radiation. i had horrible mouth sores, vomiting, , etc, but after a few weeks, it got much better. Auto transplants are quicker to recover from, within 3 months of having the transplant I was back at work. 13 months later, I learned it was starting to come back, and they suggested another transplant, with a donor. Having an allogenic transplant is not as intense, and I was actually able to do it outpatient. But it has taken me longer to get back to my old self, they say that can take 6 months to a year. I am only 2 months out of this transplant and have only had a little skin rashes from the graft vs host you get when you have a donor, but I have tolerated it well so far. It's not easy, but you get through it, because you have no choice not to. My faith was my backbone during all of it, I hope it is for you as well.

DennisR
Posts: 148
Joined: Sep 2009

Hi Stephany,
Sorry to hear about your cancer. Don't be fooled, Cancer is an insidious disease and there is no easy way to beat it. However it isn't a Death Sentence any more like I always thought it was, I've beaten it twice no and am confident that this time it's most likely gone for good.
Like you I was informed that a BMT/Peripheral Stem Cell Transplant was my best chance to completely cure a recurring NHL cancer, I opted to have the procedure done and completed it in February, 2009. I'm now beginning to feel absolutely Great, better than I have for many years.
I learned that the Peripheral Stem Cell Transplant is the modern and preferred method of performiing a BMT , however they tend to use the two terms interchangably, even the Hospital Ward I was in was called the BMT Ward, though every patient was actually getting a Stem Cell Transplant, either using their own Cells or those from a Donor. If you can use your own cells it's generally considered to be preferable since there's less chance of rejection.
Don't be frightened by 50% success odds, it beats virtual certainty that the cancer will recur, and besides the 50% odds include Patients that are only trying the BMT as a last resort and are in very poor health and terminal when they do it. Just remember that 100% of the people that it workeed for are still here today (I'm one of those) enjoying their families and life in general, become one of those. Good Luck, I hope I've helped a little.
DennisR

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