Monday, March 3, 2014

A Very Busy Weekend

Things have been VERY busy this weekend - starting with last Thursday. I will try to give you a quick update.

Last Thursday we went had two doctor's appointments. The first was the normal (twice a week) chemo visit to the oncologist in Hookset. After that, we met with another doctor at the hospital in Manchester. This second doctor does something called  Kyphoplasty. I have three vertebrae that are badly collapsed - and possibly collapsing more. In this procedure, they drill little holes into the vertebrae and insert tiny balloons in there which they somehow inflate to expand the bone back to something closer to its original shape. They then inject some sort of quick hardening cement to make the repair permanent. I know it sounds kind of gross, but apparently, they do this all the time and it is low risk and highly effective. Anyway, that was our first consulting visit with this doctor. He recommends going ahead with the procedure this Friday.

From there, we drove to Boston and stayed over Thursday night with friends. On Friday, we arrived at our new pied a terre at Fox Hill Village in Westwood. What a hectic day - but everything came together beautifully.

First of all, we have zero furniture for the apartment. However, we had ordered a very nice sleeper sofa from Bloomingdales and miracle of miracles they had delivered it that morning just before we arrived. Fox Hill also has a sort of furniture exchange area and we found a chair and love seat there which we purchased for small money on the spot. The Fox Hill guys delivered that to the apartment within a few minutes of the purchase. So we now have some actual furniture.

We also managed to get checked out and get keys to use the Fitness Center and the Wood Shop and get keys to our mailbox. All of that took an hour or so, but it is good to have all that stuff out of the way.

Barbara and I then hauled our truck full of items to the unit - which took us about an hour. This was things like towels and sheets and suitcases with a few basics.

The next most vital thing of course is internet access. I had purchased a cable modem as well as a router and Comcast had sent a "self install kit" for the TV part of our service. With some considerable effort - including a support call, I managed to get the cable modem going. After that, electricians came and ran a wire to the place where I wanted our router. It now all works great. We needed to be able to watch Netflix.

So, we have now been here for three days and will be leaving tomorrow. The sleeper sofa is very comfortable. We have met a number of very nice people and it seems like we will like it here a great deal. So far, all indications are positive.

Now on to the latest medical news. Well - actually - the news we have has to do with treatment plans rather than with any particular results. I will be very busy over the next two weeks. Actually, Monday (today) was supposed to be the first day of my "rest week" from my chemo. Instead, I will be getting two weeks of "rest" during which time I will get radiation therapy. According to the schedule, chemo will start up again on March 17.

So, later this morning, we will drive from Westwood up to Concord for the first of what will be 10 weekdays of radiation therapy on my spine. We are told that each treatment will take just a few minutes - but unfortunately, this needs to be done in Concord, so it will be 2 - 3 hours per day. As far as side effects go, they should not be too bad. Mostly, I might feel very tired. It won't even make me glow in the dark.

Then on Friday, after my radiation therapy in Concord, we will drive to Manchester where I will get my Kyphoplasty procedure. This will be done under general anesthesia. They expect to send me home at the end of the day.

Actually, I am thinking that since this Kyphoplasty procedure involves injecting some sort of quick hardening cement into the spine, perhaps I should call the guys at Laconia Sand and Gravel to see if they can do it. They would probably charge less and it would save us a drive to Manchester. 


  1. Holy cow!!! Congrats on your new home! I know you will love it. Based on when you posted this…the sleeper must not be that comfortable!

    Lots of hugs, prayers and energy!!! Joan

  2. Wow. Who knew papier mâché would inspire a cancer treatment.

  3. Wow! What a week you've had! The Kyphoplasty thing sounds really cool, Warren, and I bet you will feel so much better!