Friday, July 10, 2009

Final Decision on Lovenox

On Wednesday evening, we got a call from Abbey's oncologist to discuss what the doctors had decided to do with Abbey's shots.  When we talked to the nurse practitioner, we knew what she said wasn't written in stone, but we felt pretty good about how much better the clot was and didn't think the plan that she said would change all that much.  

Dr. B explained that they weren't sure if what they are now seeing in the area that the clot was is just a little extra that hasn't gone away yet, or if it is scar tissue from the clot being there.  He said over time, both of those will go away, but not on their own.  They aren't concerned about what they are seeing, but want to be very conservative in the treatment to get rid of whatever is still there so this clot never is an issue again.  

He explained that cells can get caught on this area and can form another clot if this doesn't completely get taken care of now.  So, they have decided that they want us to continue the shots for three more months to be sure that there is no sign of this clot ever being there.  As he heard my disappointment on the phone, he promised me that in a couple years, we will be really glad that we did these three extra months because it should never be an issue again.  He said that if this clot was in her arm or leg, they most likely wouldn't be as conservative and cautious in the treatment of it, but since it's in her brain they don't want to take any chances.

Abbey has been getting 15 mg two times a day for three months.  He did cut the dose in half (to 7.5 mg), but she still needs to get two shots a day since each shot only thins her blood for 12 hours.  

So, Wednesday was a hard day as our hopes for being completely done with this shot are gone.  I have a chart that I made to write down where and what time she gets each shot so I can keep track of the location on her little body.  I rotate from her arms to her legs and I try not to do two shots in a row in the same location so each area can get a little break.  She has little bruises on all four shot sites and at times her skin just looks irritated and sore.  Last week when we went for her MRI I stopped with Monday on my chart, feeling so confident that we were going to be completely done with them.  So, it's hard to have to continue this chart for three more months.

When we sat down with Abbey and explained what the doctors told us she just calmly said "o.k." and went back to playing without ever getting even a little upset or complaining about it.  Not a day goes by that she doesn't help me to handle this all.  She just accepts each step of this process with such ease.  She never complains about her many medicines and has accepted these shots so much more these last couple weeks.  I really can see that God was preparing us in accepting these three months before us by Abbey getting so much more accepting of the shots these last couple weeks.  I can't tell you how proud we are of her and how her sweet spirit and trust in us encourages our hearts so much.  

So thank you for walking through this week with us.  Although the results and treatment plan from here on out with the shots wasn't what we were hoping for, we are at peace with what we need to do.  We will do anything to get this girl better so we continue to trust in our doctors and ultimately trust in our Lord.  We feel blessed everyday to be where we are and to see how far we have come. 


The Gammons Family said...

These are the verses that I have in front of me at my desk. I am praying them for you.

Psalm 121
I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved;
he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keep Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper;
the Lord is the shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.

Bethany said...

When I first saw from my dashboard that you'd posted, I immediately thought you were going to say that you were going to be able to stop the shots afterall. The words from a praise song immediately filled my mind as I opened your page, "Shout to the Lord all the earth let us sing; power and magesty, praise to our king!"...and I was going to leave that as my comment. Of course after reading your post I see that you do have 3 more months ahead of you for the shots, but I am still singing that song because our Lord IS healing Abbey and already has shown so much of himself through what you all have endured. May the next three months go by quickly in terms of the shots and may you never have to give your little girl another shot yourself again! Thinking of you today Shelley :)

Beth said...

I am so sorry that Abbey has to endure three more months of shots! She sounds like such a little trouper and amazing kiddo!!

I know that you had hoped that the shots would be ending, but your positive spirit is amazing!!

Praying that Abbey continues to accept the shots and that Mom's heart continues to be at peace with this situation!!

Anonymous said...

sorry for your dissapointment...i am still praying for your family. it is funny how often our kids teach us how we should respond to things by the way they do!
i am praying that abbey will be completely healed and the cancer will never return again. also, praying for you that you will be able to guard your mind against all of the 'what if's' and have God's peace with you each day.

Cindy Bailey said...

Dear Shelley, Abbey and family...I can feel your disappointment and I'm joining in with the others praying that once the shots are finished, that will be the end for good. Abbey sure has accepted her fate with the maturity of a much older person. She continues to amaze me. As I was reading the latest message, I was watching the slideshow on the right and enjoying seeing Abbey and her beautiful smile, you're children are all adorable. My favorite is Abbey in her purple hat. Please tell her she's beautiful in that hat. Hang in there, the clot will be taken care of in God's time. Bless you!

Amber said...

It was so nice meeting you at the Gross's wedding today. What a small world!

Emma said...

As a lurker, i've decided to come out of hiding for a bit-i couldn't find your e-mail so i hope you will excuse this.

As a young woman who has experienced both cancer at childhood, and now a blood disorder in my 20's i am hoping this will help:

1) ask your doctor for a prescription for an EMLA cream. This will help with the pain.

2) After giving the shot, place a cool moist towel on the injection area. This helps with bruising and swelling(it worked for me as a kid...and now as a an adult)

3) sounds strange but purchase a small bottle of odorless fish oil. Place a small amount on a q-tip and rub the injection sites with it after they have dried out. This will also help to lessen many of the problems: I know, i know "old wives tale" but it helps with scarring/scabing.

I hope this tips help.

suzanne said...

Sorry to hear the shots have to continue for sweet Abbey. She's being such a trooper :) My prayers continue for her and your family.

A cancer mom

Manic Mother said...

Just wanted to say hello, my son was recently diagnosed with ALL, its such a long hard road!

Jason Haymaker said...

Your "praying for Abbey" bracelets made it all the way to Cambodia. Praying from half way around the world!! Love you guys- stay strong!
Love Marcie (for all of us)