Thursday, September 24, 2009

from 12:30 to 5:50PM

Mom's Avastin infusion took about 90 minutes to do, as advertised, but the day went way longer: we had to drive to the medical center, check in, have Mom weighed (109 pounds today... she's still losing weight), have her vitals done, get an IV line put in (the nurse had to try twice), get a saline drip started, and then get the Avastin. After we finished, we had to check out, and then we drove in rush-hour traffic to Fort Hunt Park, where we led Mom in a circuit around one of the parking lots.

Mom was a good sport throughout the whole ordeal; our nurse, a lady named Gail, was very friendly and reassuring. She told us about how few people actually manifest side effects with Avastin, despite the long list of possible problems. I'm still apprehensive, though: we've been reassured before about what should happen with Mom, but things have rarely turned out the way the statistics predicted.

Today's walk in the park went as well as it did yesterday, when we took Mom to the park after her visitors went home. She was vigorous, moving along at a healthy clip, very much in contrast with her stooped and shuffling behavior two park walks ago. Remember when I'd written about Mom covering only 60 yards? That was a depressing day. Yesterday and today, Mom walked at least 130 yards-- possibly more. I jokingly asked her if she wanted to walk another lap around the parking lot. She smiled, in on the joke, and shook her head. She's getting stronger (maybe the protein shakes are helping), but she's not that strong yet.

We've been given a calendar that covers Mom's Avastin sessions for September and October. September is done now; Mom's got four dates to look forward to in October. Two are for blood work, and two are for Avastin infusions. After the third Avastin session, we'll be back at NCI for another MRI, and then we'll meet with Dr. Fine to discuss Mom's progress. I hope Avastin helps her in some way.


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