Updated 11/4/15 because of recent developments: I believe that I have reached a point that I may have to start preparing to be with the Lord soon.
Now that I am cured, it's time for me
to shift focus to long-term effects of my treatment. I have written
several posts about the possible side effects of leukemia treatment. If
you've read them, forgotten about them, or simply said to yourself "not
going to happen to me", etc., then you need to read this post. There
are consequences, either minor or major, of being cured of leukemia.
From what I've read on the internet and some credible websites, I've
found out that I have a high chance of facing a life-threatening health
complication within ten years. I've determined that I have a 70% chance
of getting acute myeloid leukemia, a 60% chance of getting bladder
cancer, and an 85% chance of getting kidney cancer.
concern is that I have a high risk of dying from a major heart attack
before I turn 50. The three reasons for this are: the doxyrubicin and
daunorubicin chemo given to me during my Hyper-CVAD treatments, my
consistently high blood pressure, and the fact that I have periodontal
disease and tooth decay. This is unique to my situation meaning
it will probably not happen to anyone else, so don't automatically think
this applies to you. However, the material I read indicates that all
leukemia survivors have a higher risk of cardiovascular problems.
There is more, and this is the most serious.
Because I had sixteen intrathecal treatments (spinal taps and chemo
injections into my central nervous system), because I had numerous
Vincristine treatments, and because I had brain scarring from getting
MRSA in my cranial port, I have a moderate risk of serious brain and
nerve dysfunction. In simpler words, I'm at risk of having serious
mental problems in the future including, but not limited to, memory
problems, loss of motor controls, and behavioral issues. Due to recent
incidents, I believe the effects have started.
this is pretty scary to me but not surprising. During my treatment, I
was basically poisoned everywhere in my body. I was given massive
amounts of the chemotherapy drugs cyclophosphamide, cytarabine,
doxyrubicin, daunorubicin, and methotrexate during my seven cycles of
Hyper-CVAD treatment. I was also given more chemo, fludarabine and
busulfan, during the conditioning chemo of my bone marrow transplant.
There will definitely be consequences from receiving all of this chemo
that I will, no doubt, experience soon. Again, I will stress that you
don't automatically presume that all of this applies to you and all
leukemia survivors. You just need to be aware of your health and take
care of yourself!
Get regular checkups, see your cancer
doctor at least once a year, and get any strange health issues
addressed immediately. Also, pray and make the most of everyday! I said
it at the top of this post, but I'm going to say it again because I feel
it in my heart: I believe that I have reached a point that I may have to start preparing for going home to the Lord.
been very fortunate to survive my ordeal and live this long to tell
about it. However, I seriously believe that I am going to face a major
health issue as early as five years from now. My interpretation of
being cured is that you never get back to a normal life (as if nothing
ever happened,) and a cure only extends life a decade or two. So, I need
to cherish every day, tell as many people about my story that I can,
and live life to the fullest more than ever. I am also prepared and
confident that the consequences of being cured of my leukemia will not
allow me to live a full and normal life. I'll be blunt: I'm 41 years
old, and I'm not expecting to live past 50. If I do, it will just add to
my incredible survival story. If I don't, then I will be with the Lord
sooner. Both outcomes seem pretty good to me.
government article complements the reason I wrote this post. It's an
article on childhood ALL which is very similar to my ALL:
This article is interesting as well:
9 months ago