we just got back from the hospital from treatment day 1, and i have a couple minutes so i wanted to provide you guys a more complete explanation of the status besides what mom and i've been able to communicate so far.
here's the deal. the doctor is extremely intelligent and genuine, has a special rapport with dad, and i trust him 100%. he is certain that Dad has mm, but that treatment for mm is generally very effective, and dad is in the category of people that respond well to the treatment, and the doctor gives dad a 90% chance for full recovery in 6 months of treatment. not only that, mm is the type of cancer that, if you have to have cancer, would be the best type to have. the treatment, an assortment of drugs, attack the cause almost directly. from this point forward he should feel better everyday with some possible episodes of swelling, rash, and intermittent pain as the doctor refines the proper blends of meds based on dad's reactions. i think this is great news. just like the video lia emailed a link to said, mm is not curable, but neither is arthritis, but it is totally manageable. most patients, at the end of the 6 month treatment, are in pre-symptom shape and can exercise and be active. all the symptoms, including the bone degradation, anemia, and kidney strain are all revertible.
dad's current pain symptoms are due to the following effects of the metastasis of the blood cells. he has had bone degradation in multiple areas (skull, femur, pelvis), and the excess calcium from these areas that has fallen away along with the excess protein in his system have put his kidneys under a lot of stress (hence his back pain), and the extra resources to his white blood cell irregular growth have detracted from his red blood cell count and hence he is anemic. all that pain required him to take some pain pills which have made him constipated, ... You can start to see how the one source has created a snowball of negative symptoms, but as the treatment starts to melt away layer after layer, and cure the root cause, he can and will ultimately return to original condition. the treatment consists of about 4 major and 2 minor drugs (which actually come to a couple $K a month, but a small price to pay, and after a few k, insurance will pick up 95% of the rest). 2 of the drugs are administered with iv by the clinic (which has a location in fayetteville) and dad will go for those on tuesdays and fridays. we had to go in town today for it, just because it was the first one, but the rest will be much closer and it's the same doctor. the remainder of the drugs are administered orally (by pill) according to the schedule on the calendar i shared this morning. one drug is a steroid that quickly regenerates the bones, one drug is considered chemo and attacks the metastasizing cells, one drug treats some cold sores that some patients experience as a side effect of the chemo pill, and i can't remember the fourth off hand, but have it written down.
anyway, wanted to share these details now that i had a couple minutes. hope it helps fill in some gaps.
haven't eaten since breakfast, and bobbie just put together something that smells really good, so i'm gonna grab a bite right now.
love you guys, hope you find this info as uplifting as i have. talk to you soon.