June 20, 2012

Happy Summer Solstice!

Day 5 of 9 with no cytotoxics and no steroids.

New blood samples were taken by Constance at Lynn to see how I’ve done after cycle 3.

Then, I had my meeting with Warren today.  He was very pleased with my progress after the first two cycles.  He explained that the “Abnormal Protein Band 1” is the key marker for measuring progress of my myeloma. You may recall that my initial value was 2.1 g/dL.  This dropped to 1.5 after cycle 1 and dropped further to 0.9 after cycle 2.  Once this has dropped to 10% of the original value, I can be said to be ready for stem cell transplant.  Once this value is 0.0 or “none detected” I can then be said to have a complete response.  Then, we can start to measure the free light chains to check for stringent complete response.  For those of you who have heard of “M-protein” or “M-spike”, these terms also refer to the “Abnormal Protein Band 1”.

Regarding the Peripheral Neuropathy (PN) that I’ve been fighting off with my chiropractor and through Spiritual Healing, Warren said that, once I have received a total of 40mg/square meter (the mg refers to milligram – each mg is about 0.000035 ounces, and the square meter refers to the surface area of my body in square meters – each square meter is about 10.7 square feet), then I can expect that any effects of the Velcade causing PN will have reached their plateau and would not get worse.  Each time I’ve had and will have had a dose of Velcade, it’s 1.3mg/square meter.  So, for the 12 doses I’ve had so far, this is equivalent to 15.6mg/square meter or I’m about 39% of the way to that plateau.  Since area of my body is 1.85 square meters, my regular dose is 2.4mg.  Potent drug, huh?  Especially when you compare this to acetaminophen pain reliever where the standard tablet is 325mg and the usual dose is 2 tablets or 650mg.