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Archives for: July 2005

07/24/05

Permalink 10:46:23 pm, Categories: Background, 443 words   English (US)

Background

I was diagnosed with Mantle Cell Lymphoma (MCL) on 6/14/05, after biopsy of a tonsil I had removed. There was no other evidence of MCL that I could detect.

Further tests (CT, PET, Bone Marrow, Colonscopy, Endoscopy, and blood work) showed that there was evidence of MCL in my bone marrow, colon, various lymph nodes, spleen (enlarged), etc - basically, the typical MCL story.

We debated two treatments:
(1) Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) - RCHOP, followed by RICE, followed by a Stem Cell Transplant, followed by Rituxan.
(2) Hackensack University Medical (HUMed/MD Anderson type protocol) - R-Hyper CVAD.

Both treatments sound promising, and both doctors were excellent. MSKCC has an excellent reputation in cancer, and HUMed has an excellent reputation as a hospital, growing as a cancer center (we believe the recent addition of Dr. Goy as the head of Lymphoma will be key).

We decided on R-Hyper CVAD due to it's high response rate. Additionally, I'm young (38), and expecting that to play in my favor in dealing with the toxicity of R-Hyper CVAD.

I'm beginning R-Hyper CVAD on 7/25/05. 6 Cycles expected. No stem cell transplant if the initial results are positive.

This blog is intended to serve 3 purposes:
1) To allow me to track my experiences to I can know what to expect for future treatments, and monitor my progress
2) To allow me to share what's going on with family and friends
3) To allow others to see what I'm experiencing, so they may have some insight as to what to expect if they go down this line of treatment. Understanding of course that chemo is very personal and everyone handles it differently, but I wanted to have some barometer as to what to expect, and this should hopefully allow others that benefit.

Additional comments on my background:
- I was 38 when diagnosed
- I was in good physical condition
- I was on the Atkins diet from 4/03-11/03 'hard core', dropping about 55 lbs. - coupled with excercise. (The Atkins diet I did involved vegetables, chicken, fish, and some meat - it did NOT involve bacon double cheeseburgers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner)
- I'm an active cyclist. In season we'd ride 32 miles one night a week, and I'd be on a trainer 4 additional days a week for at least half an hour and up to an hour. We'd also do some 50 mile 'events'.
- I'd had a colonoscopy in 2000 (as my father is a colon cancer survivor), and I wanted to begin early detection (I was 33 at the time). 2 non-cancerous polyps were found and removed.
- The swollen tonsil was the only way this was detected.
- I've never had any other significant medical events. This was the first time I'd ever stayed overnight at a hospital.

Background

These are my trials and tribulations of R-Hyper CVAD treatment for Stage 4 Mantle Cell Lymphoma

At the start of treatment (7/2005) I was a 38 year old male in good physical condition who was diagnosed with Stage 4 Mantle Cell Lymphoma on June 14th, 2005. I chose to begin R-Hyper CVAD treatment in Hackensack, N.J., under care of Dr. Goy - previously of MD Anderson in Texas, and prior to that Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York.

Thanks to my brother Alex for setting up this Blog!!

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