Saturday, August 14, 2010

Overdue Trouble cancer update

Well, well.  So much for staying on top of blogging. 

It's been 5 months since Trouble was diagnosed with Lymphosarcoma and started chemotherapy. 

Trouble is on a rotating series of chemotherapy medications.  For the first 2 cycles, the treatments are weekly; for the second 2 cycles, the treatments are bi-weekly.  The first and third treatment of each 4-treatment cycle is Vincristine. 

Trouble's first Vincristine treatment was nothing short of horrible.  He was fine the evening of his treatment (he goes to the oncologist on Fridays) and the next morning.  On Saturday afternoon, after a morning on the beach and an afternoon hike, Trouble threw up.  From that point, his appetite stated to rapidly diminish to nothing and the vomiting increased.  By Sunday, Trouble was at our vet's for anti-nausea injections and subcutaneous fluids (the effects of subcutaneous fluids are nothing short of amazing).  I gave him more subcutaneous fluids at home on Sunday evening.  He looked awful.  He had lost about 7 pounds (he normally weighs 54 pounds), his eyes were sunken into his head, and he didn't want to get up.  Thank heavens, by Monday, he was eating and getting better.

After that horrible first treatment, Trouble was given an injection of Cerenia after every chemotherapy treatment and given Cerenia orally for up to 4 days after treatment.  In addition, the dosage of Vincristine was reduced.

So, here we are.  Fourteen treatments down and two treatments to go.  Trouble is doing great.  He has had no further vomiting, his weight is back, his energy is normal, his muscle tone back to normal.  Sometimes he seems mildly mentally foggy or seems to have a bit less stamina than I would expect him to have.  He has lost a tremendous amount of hair, but he's back to agility training and we started attending weekly Rally practices.

Trouble and Marley at the Run for the Seals at Rodeo Beach, the day before we found the lump in his throat.
Trouble and Marley in my front yard 8-14-10.  Notice the difference in Trouble's coat!

It feels like it's taken this long to exhale after Trouble's diagnosis.  Now, with two treatments to go, it seems really scary again.  We'll finish treatments and then monitor and hope for the best. 

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