Thursday, May 13, 2010

FOLFOX Round 7: If It's Tuesday, It Must Be Wednesday

The first six rounds of chemo all started on a Tuesday and ended on a Thursday.  I plan my week around it, e.g. so that I don't have to wear the chemo pump during soccer practice on Thursday evening).  However, this week was different.  I was teleworking Tuesday morning, expecting to go to the doctor's office at 1:00 PM, when I got a call from aforementioned doctor's office to remind me of my appointment on Wednesday at 1:00 PM. 

"Wednesday?" I asked incredulously, "I always have my appointments on Tuesday, why is it on Wednesday?"

It turns out that they scheduled me for Wednesday, but I did not catch the error.  I have the tentative times blocked off on my calendar, so when they told me the appointment, I must have just heard the time and updated only that on my smart phone.  How smart is it if it didn't catch the error?  Anyway, I talked to one of the nurses to see if they could squeeze me in on Tuesday afternoon, but she said it was impossible because my drugs arrive by overnight courier on the morning of my appointment and thus,  wouldn't be there until Wednesday morning.

"So, I'm not picky.  Could I just have someone else's chemo?"
"No," she laughed. "It doesn't work that way."

So, come Wednesday, I'm sitting in the infusion room, getting my drugs and reading Soccernomics, when the English nurse (she's from southern England, I hope, for her sake, she's not a Portsmouth fan) tells me that one of my drugs, Leucovarin the "L" in FOLFOX, arrived in a saline solution, which is different from what I usually get.  Saline, it turns out, is incompatible with oxaliplatin (the "OX), so she couldn't run it in the same iv line to my mediport.  Instead, she had to find one of my junkie veins and run a new line into my arm.  Fortunately for them, nurses and phlebotomists never have problems finding my stout veins.  The only trouble she had was seeing the veins under all that hair.  You kow what hairy arms mean, don't you - tape.  Anyway, they had to use this work around for several patients and assured us that it was only an anomaly and would not happen again.

Two chapters, a couple of comments on Soccer Insider, and a nap later I was out of there.

Our soccer team lost another game.  The U8s play 6-on-6 and exactlysix players(out of 11) showed up for the game.  So they were exhausted quickly.  Nevertheless, these six played their best game of the season.  Our meandering defender got out of position many times to chase a winger, but he followed the ball doggedly and shut down many chances.  Our goalkeepers (I did rotate at this position) stayed on their line and actually fell on the ball instead of trying to kick it away.  Our forwards and midfielders passed better than in any other game and got many shots off.  Unfortunately, fatigue set in early and many of the shots were hurried.  A 0-3 loss was not bad, considering.  One bright side is that I could toss out my substitution scheme at the start of the game.


  1. I hope the six kids who showed up learnt a lot more and had a lot of fun despite the score. I think some parents put their kids in soccer (and other activities) just to tell their friends, whilst some parents see an opportunity for exercise, fun, and to learn teamwork and commitment.

  2. I blame the front office. I'm getting sick of them acquiring players who don't show up for games. It's not the coaches fault! Fire the front office!

    However, if they lose another game, then fire I-270.

  3. Saline, saline over the hairy vein
    Where many a sticky tape shall go
    'Ere Shiv comes home again

    Sorry, sometimes I just can't help myself.

  4. Apropos of nothing, I thought I would throw this out there, I-270. I've got a friend from college that I've known for 18 years in hospice from stomach cancer. So if I seem a little short with idiots like "BillyBob" there's a good reason why -- well, this reason, and the fact that he couldn't have been dumber.

  5. Yeah. His was clearly a case of typing without comprehending.

    I'm very sorry to hear about your friend. Stomach cancer is a real bitch because, the identifiable symptoms appear when it's very late. Your friend and I most likely have the same type of tumor, adenocarcinoma, but I was "lucky" to have it where I sit.

  6. You are 100% correct -- they figured it out maybe two months ago, and couldn't believe it was in someone so young (35) and healthy (avid runner). I've known two others stricken with it, in their 50s, and they only had a month. I think a lot of people expect to be able to detect these things easily and early, as if a blood test (look, white blood cell count is up!) would magically reveal it.