Out of the ICU

After nearly a week at Riley, I made it home on Thursday!

Thankfully my stay at the ICU was brief. Throughout last Saturday, they successfully weaned me off of the blood pressure medication. Around midnight they transferred me to the hemoc floor and I was finally able to get some sleep.

My blood cultures were negative, so they treated me for "culture-negative sepsis" which meant that they needed to keep me on antibiotics longer than they typically do (until my ANC recovered above 500). Since my immune system is still suppressed due to the cumulative effect of the chemos in the last phase, they kept me in the hospital. I was feeling much better on Sunday and charted an ANC for the first time in several days. Normally, I would have had to wait until my ANC had rebounded enough to send me home. But, since we had already had some experience doing antibiotics at home, they allowed me to go home with the IV antibiotics which I'll be on until my ANC is over 500.

I'll officially start the next phase of my treatment, Interim Maintenance II, on October 4th. My doctors allowed me to push it back so that I could spend a week to get started with my new job (more on that in a second). This phase will have a few different rounds of methotrexate - the drug that ended up giving me neurotoxicity where I couldn't speak a few weeks ago - administered intrathecally (through spinal taps) and intravenously (through my port). Because of the neurotoxicity, they're going to use a different kind of chemo for the spinal tap (for at least the first one). They're not concerned I'll have any issues with the IV doses since they will be much smaller than the ones I received during the previous Interim Maintenance I phase and shouldn't cross the blood-brain barrier. Regardless, they're going to give me some leucovorin (folinic acid) which will make sure any residual methotrexate doesn't have an undesired effect.

Oh, and as far as my job goes, I'll be working as a product manager for a company called Twilio, which makes tools that allow developers to programmatically send texts or make phone calls. I'll be working remotely and am looking forward to it. It'll be an adjustment to get back into the workforce full-time, but I'm excited to get back to having a more normal schedule.

Thanks for thinking of Anna and me through the craziness of the last few weeks.  It's reassuring to know how many people are rooting us on through this time in our lives - we couldn't do it without all of you.

Luna was thrilled that I was back home. (can't you tell?)

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