Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Change in plans

This is a picture of Dale about to recieve his third dose of radiation to the brain. It went pretty well. They let him keep the face mask which he wore at home and scared his brothers. There has been a slight change in plans. The surgery to place the central line has been changed to Feb. 5th. Total body radiation will start on 2/6 and continue for 4 days followed by 4 more days of chemotherapy(2 days of ARA -C and 2 days of Cyclophosphamide). His day of rest will be 2/14 and the transplant with Derek will take place on 2/15 (Thursday). Dale will be admitted to the hospital on 2/5. Derek will be admitted on 2/15. Unfortunately, Dale caught a cold (from me) . We are hoping he will get over it by Monday. He is still going to school. This weekend will be spent doing our regular routine: baseball practice, basketball games, violin lessons and most importantly going to church to pray for a successful transplant. Thank you for your continued support. We are very thankful to those who have signed up to give platelets and blood. If you would like more information about the blood or platelet donation, here is the number (310) 794-7267 - for blood donations and (310) 206-6187 for platelet donations.

Here are a few more pictures. Dale tried snow boarding for the first time last Saturday 2/27 at Mountain High and played the violin at church and at our cousins anniversay party on Sunday.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Day 28 bone marrow biopsy - remission

Dale is officially in remission. His last biopsy was negative. The orginal plan was to do another month of chemo before the transplant but the doctors decided to go with it now since he is so strong . Derek is the donor and has already started his
pre-donor testing. Derek spent 6 hours at UCLA this past Friday. He bravely gave 8 tubes of blood , a cup of urine and took his shirt off to take an x-ray and EKG. For those of you who don't know Derek, he is alittle shy about taking off his shirt because of his slightly chubby profile. The staff at UCLA made Derek feel very special about this gift he will be giving to Dale because he is the only one that can give it to him. If all his tests clear, the anticipated admission date for Dale is Feb. 4th. He is to have surgery on Feb. 2nd for his central line placement. Dale will receive 3 days of radiation (2/5- 2/7) followed by 3 days of chemotherapy. He gets to rest one day on the 11th and the transplant will take place on 2/12. Derek will be admitted that morning and stay until Tuesday. The doctors said Dale and Derek could room together as long as neither of them were sick. From there, it could be 1-3 months before he gets to come home.
Dale will also receive 3 days of head radiation prior to his admission. This is sceduled for 1/29 - 1/31.
A lot will take place over the next 2 weeks. Please continue to pray for the strength and courage both Dale and Derek will
need to get through this. (And Danny too, he's trying his best to keep his busy schedule and spend time with Dale. I often wonder what's going through his teenage mind as we all go through this.)
Dale is at baseball practice today. He is happy to be back in remission and is eating constantly.
Thank you for your continued support and prayers. It is what we need most.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Day 21 Bone marrow biopsy

Thursday's (1/11) bone marrow biopsy procedure went well. Dale woke up, ate lunch and went off to school . He was able to talk the doctor into letting him go to school. He did wear a mask while in the classroom since some of the kids according to Dale were coughing. With a low white blood cell count, Dale is very susceptible to catching a viral and/or bacterial infection.
Hand washing was deeply emphasized and Dale promised to do it all so he still manages to go to school.
The bone marrow result so far shows " HYPOCELLULAR MARROW WITH REGENERATING TRILINEAGE HEMATOPOIESIS. 0.4% RESIDUAL LYMPHOBLASTS." According to the doctor, this is a very good sign that Dale is well on his way into remission. He was catagorized as a "early rapid responder" which is a good thing. A repeat bone marrow biopsy will be done next week and hopefully Dale will be in a full remission. The day 28 marrow is the important one. Dale received chemo again today. He is now at his violin lesson. He just started to learn to play the violin and loves it!
Take care and thank you all for your prayers.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

UCLA update

I heard from UCLA today with a preliminary report on the search for a marrow match. There were no marrow matches but there were two 5 out of 6 matching cords (umbilical cords). The doctors at UCLA felt that unless these cords were perfect, Derek was still a better match. So it looks like Derek is still our best bet so far.
Dale's ANC (absolute neutrophil count) is now less than 1000 so he was told today he should stay away from school until
his counts recover. He was very very upset about missing school.
Tomorrow is our big day. He will undergo another bone marrow biopsy and more chemo. Hopefully, it will show that he is in remission or at least on his way into remission. Please pray for God's blessing to be with Dale tomorrow. A full remission by day 21 will take a miracle and we are hoping for one.
Thanks again for your prayers.

Thursday, January 4, 2007


Happy New Year! Our meeting at UCLA was positive . Our whole family attended plus Millie and Eric from Hawaii. The plan is to do a search for a 10/10 match or anyone better than Derek (9/10). They initiated the search that day. Initial results will be available in approx. 2 weeks. If there are any potential matches, those people will be called for further testing. If there is no other possible matches, we will proceed with Derek. In the meantime , Dale and Derek will start preparing for the transplant. (i.e. lab tests , echocardiogram, chest xray, etc,,) Once admitted into UCLA , Dale will receive more chemotherapy and radiation for 10 days to prep him for the transplant. Once the transplant takes place , Dale wil be supported with blood and platelet transfusions , antibiotics and nutrition until his new marrow kicks in. UCLA mentioned stocking up on blood for Dale prior to the the transplant. Once I find out more about this, I will let you know. Dale is B+.
Dale will continue to receive chemotherapy for about 8 weeks. The more treatment he gets before the transplant , the better
so they say. During the meeting, Dale developed a horrible headache. He said he felt like he was going to die. He became nauseous and vomited . Needless to say, this sent us in all different directions, getting water and tylenol and a pepsi.
The doctors felt Dale suffers from steroid induced "migraine" type headaches which explains why the pepsi helps. In a few hours Dale was eating an "In and Out" burger with fries and was off to Long Beach Memorial that afternoon for more chemo.
Dale is also gaining weight from the steroids. His cheeks are rosey and puffy.
Today Dale is scheduld for more chemo. (Dauno,vincristine and Erwinia - Aspariginase) He just finished bike riding with Derek and is now playing video games with Danny. Life goes on....
Thank you for your conintued support and prayers.