12-30-10   Thursday   +64

Status:  Looks like I’m in a stable slump.  Sort of like a .300 hitter suddenly batting .200.  As we resolve one problem, another one seems to pop up.  Lisa refers to this under the official medical terminology as the “Whack-a-Mole” syndrome.

  Events:   A brief summary:  the search for the cause of my dysuria (pain and burning on urination) has shown up no bacterial urinary infection, no BK virus, no adenovirus, no herpes virus.  So the cause is obscure.  We tried pyridium (an oral pill that acts like a local bladder numbing agent).  Didn’t seem to help and caused nausea and vomiting.  So we stopped it – then the staff tells us they really haven’t seen it work either.

  Cytomegalovirus cultures are negative times two, so we’ll just continue the anti-viral Valcyte for just another week, not a moment too soon since it’s probably the reason my counts are low.  In order to help my neutrophils come back, I’m getting an injection every other day of a hormone-like factor that stimulates those cells.  It’s given like an insulin shot.

  My graft vs. host disease continues to progress, and seems worse on the parts of my skin that’s been exposed to the sun.  One of the nurses said she’d seen a patient that was spared in the pattern of a bikini.  I’ve gotten the most of the graft vs. leukemia effect, so they started a 12-day course of steroids to halt the progression.  The dose is what we in the medical profession refer to as “industrial strength,” and it comes with its own hazard since it’s such a potent immune-suppressant.  It will certainly make me feel better and increase my appetite.  

 Comments:   The kids are coming up for the weekend – good for them and good for me.

 I wish everyone a wonderful New Years Eve, and a Happy and Healthy New Year.  I’m looking to join you in that.  We’ll update you on Monday.

Love,

-Bruce

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16 Responses to “”

  1. wendy Says:

    sounds like a lot of tinkering and you know what they about that. Here’s hoping that the day 100 comes real soon…so you can be sailing a more steady course.

  2. judy moss Says:

    Bruce
    We wish you, Lisa and your entire family excellent health, happiness, peace and prosperity in 2011. May it be the HEALTHIEST and happiest of all.
    Love, Judy and Larry

  3. Susan and Larry Says:

    Here’s wishing you and your family a great New Year. Forget the happy for now. Let,s go for a healthy one. Love, Susan and Larry

  4. Kathy Shands Says:

    Bruce –
    May you, Lisa, and the kids have a Happy, Healthy, and Uncomplicated New Year! Love, Kathy, Joe, & Julie

  5. Joe Robertson Says:

    Bruce and Lisa,

    Catherine, Claire, Antoine and I have been assiduously following your oddyssey for these many months, even if we haven’t commented much. On days like today when you are suffering from the Whack-a-molies, it is easy to view the glass as half empty. But from the outside we see the enormous progress that you have made, and we are all absolutely thrilled that you are seeing another New Year. We anticipate that this is only the first of MANY for the New Bruce. So from all of our family to all of yours, we want to wish you a very happy New Year – full of love, peace, happiness, and (most importantly this year!!) health.

    Oh, and lest we forget: GO BRUCE!!

    Love from France,

    Joe, Catherine, Claire and Antoine

  6. joel steinberg Says:

    Margaret and I also send our best wishes to you and your family for a better 2011. Those anti-virals sure can suppress the white count. I can testify that Ribovirin does. But the steroids taken for a short time won’t do much harm. We know you will hang tough through all this. Love, J and M.

  7. JACKIE Says:

    From the entire Judd-Shulman family–very best wishes for a new year filled with ever–improving health and endless amounts of good cheer with the family. Jackie xo

  8. Bill Israel Says:

    Bruce – Eileen and I wish you, Lisa, Rachel, Ethan, and your extended family a wonderful and healthy New Year…and, for now, keep whacking those moles! -Bill

  9. Henry Miller Says:

    I always thought of you as around a .320-.330 hitter. Except when you were playing a prank — then it was over .400!

  10. Laurie Samuels Says:

    Happy , healthy New Year to you and your family…. this has been a rough road but as everyone agrees… you are closer to 100 than ever before! Continued good progress and hopes for you feeling better very soon. Love and hugs to you and yours. Happy 2011! Love Laurie and Harry

  11. 1-11-11 Says:

    I feel the love radiating from Baltimore, with Bruce, Lisa, Rachel & Ethan
    together for the weekend. Thanks for the New Years wishes, you sound BETTER.

  12. Gail Lehmann Says:

    Bruce,
    Mark and I are thinking of you and continue to be amazed at your “fighting spirit” and resiliance. Keep your eye on the goal and hopefully you will be over the finish line very soon.
    Much Love,
    Gail

  13. Donna Hill Howes Says:

    Sending you love and prayers that this “stable slump” will soon be a memory for you. Your passion inspires us all and we each send you strong wishes to weather this latest storm….
    The sun WILL come out tomorrow.
    Love,
    Donna

  14. Jay & Wendy Greenwald Says:

    (this is from Jay) Bruce – haven’t commented in a while, but want to say again how much reading about what you are experiencing is so uplifting, not to mention interesting and informative. Keep up the fight and the blog, please! We wish you and your family the best from our family in 2011.

    Just a sidenote that I compiled the content of your fantastic blog into a single Word file notated by date and having active links inside the file for navigation and to the comments. I’ve e-mailed the file to Lisa’s ABC e-mail address and the AOL e-mail address I have for you. Let me know if you want me to send it somewhere else.

  15. 1 11 11 86 Says:

    Would love Jay Gruenwald’s link to your blogs Have been collected the print out of all your blogs since April and they are getting heavy, would be esier on the computer.

  16. Tom Linden Says:

    I wish you and your family a happy New Year, Bruce. I’m glad you’re hanging in there with your usual sense of good humor and grace. May the coming year bring you health and happiness.

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