Friday, March 7, 2008

I keep blogging about how nothing is happening this week and it occurred to me this morning that that's not really true. I've talked about how my GvHD of the skin has been flaring up, but I haven't really been giving the whole story. Don't get excited, it's not salacious.

My hands have never really recovered from my initial bouts of GvH, especially the area around the nail beds. It's very prominent on both middle fingers and has caused the cuticle to completely disintegrate. The skin is very prone to tearing open in a ladder rung fashion up to the first knuckle, which causes considerable discomfort. At any given time the skin peels or scabs over which necessitates moisturizer carried on my person at all times. Every room in Dixie's house is replete with its own bottle of Cerave lotion.

This morning I woke to find that the GvHD has moved down on the inside of my wrist. There is a red peeling patch of skin roughly the size of a quarter about an inch down from the manifestation on my palms. It looks as though I must have been scratching it in my sleep because it looks a little abused.

I felt the need to call my dermatologist at MDA to get permission to start using steroid cream to treat all of the patches covering my body and discovered that she'd taken a short sabbatical. After much holding and transferring, they were able to track down one of the other dermatologists working with her on my case and she was able to set a course of treatment. I get to apply steroid cream once a day for the next week and possibly the one following that in the hopes that the baby stem cells back off of my skin. The doctor will be checking in with me in about a week to see what's happening. I thought it was interesting to learn that my most recent bout with the flu could be responsible for causing the flare up. Apparently, viral infections trigger the cells' memories, causing them to go crazy. She also informed me that stress can bring on an attack. I suppose I can look forward to a life time of dealing with this issue. If this is as bad as it gets, I can't complain. It's irritating, sure, but it could be so much worse. This time around it's on my legs, arms, feet, hands, and maybe my face--this could just be a break out, though.

The next time I'll see dermatology is in July. No worries.

On the field trip front, I got to go to the dentist with Chris this morning. I am a freak of nature in the sense that I love going to the dentist. It was really nice to get to visit with Dr. Cyndi and Dr. Toi. If you are in need of a dentist in the BR area, Premier dental care is amazing. I got to watch while Dr. Cyndi worked on Chris. Poor guy had two cavities filled, but the good news is that there was no mention of a follow up visit. I'm sure Chris was very much relieved since he doesn't share my enthusiasm for dental hygiene.

I plan on working on a bit of knitting this weekend to keep myself busy. I'm psyching myself up to attempt a sweater. There's something terrifying about having to put together a fabric puzzle when you're actually the person responsible for creating the pieces. Early recipients of strangely shaped scarves--Tina--will be happy to know that I have mastered the rectangle and am no longer menaced by the specter of mis-shapen gloves.

Now, for purely selfish reasons, I must take the time to thank my fellow transplant bloggers--Susan, Nancy, PJ, Leslie, Michelle and so many others. You guys are all so amazing and your comments never fail to conjure a smile. Also, the voyeur in me appreciates being able to peer into some one else's life. :)

1 comment:

Rajesh Mani said...

Ann,
What a coincidence...! My sister in law too is presently undegoing H-CVAD's in India.. with similar 4,11 ALL that you had!.... Hoping to get a good matching donor for BMT... Her 4 th round CVAD planned tomorrow..
More on:

http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/gayatriramesh