Well, yesterday was officially change over day to the Royal Marsden in Surrey. And god am I pleased that we have done it. Whilst it is over an hour to get there (in comparion to 10 minutes at Wycombe!), the hospital is in another league. Everyone we met from receptionists to the cafe staff to the nurses who took blood were SO SO SO nice! It just seemed that everyone was going out of there way to make us feel as comfortable as possible....I mean we even had someone offer us a cup of tea in the waiting room!! In a NHS hospital!!!! (And before the bah humbugs out there say it is a waste of NHS money, those people are all volunteers).
So the first thing was my MRI. Not too bad with that as I'm not claustrophobic and just closed my eyes. Given I hadn't got to bed till nearly 1am that morning and we'd been up at 6am to get to the hospital (dropping the kid at my sisters on route) the closing of eyes wasn't too difficult! After that I had to give blood and even that was a pleasant experience in comparison to usual. Interestingly, they took far more samples this time, my light chains are now going to be measured on a monthly basis and for the first time they have taken a urine sample to check for bence jones etc. They also did a nasal swab (hmmm, not sure why that was needed!). I feel like already everything is being done more thoroughly than at Wycombe and that gives me more confidence.
After the bloods it was the bit I'd been dreading. The bone marrow biopsy (BMB). Because this goes into bone, they can anethetise the skin around but not the actual bone. So you sort of get this grating feeling as they dig a corkscrew-like implement in deep!!! I have to say that this time was slightly less painful than last time I had it done, even though they weren't able to offer gas and air like I had at Wycombe. Lots of people have it under sedation but I'm not sure it helps that much. And hey, it was much more fun squeezing Nicks hand until he had no blood moving in it!! The BMB always makes me a bit shakey afterwards, but this time it was Nick who was shaking the most....not sure he'll want to be there next time. Still, at least I held his left hand (he had jokingly talked about it not mattering if I broke that one...how little he knew!)
What was great though was that they gave me a copy of my blood results on request....and I didn't even have to wait for them to be sent through! No hassle at all. It looks like my haemoglobin has gone up again...whoopee! Up from 11.3 to 11.9 so it is definitely rising fast! My calcium is still quite high at 2.55 but most of the other readings that I could have so quickly were fine - only the protein to find out about.
So I'm still hoping the chemo can be delayed....we'll find out on the 9th. I have emailed the hospital to see if they are able to give me an indication any sooner but unless my BMB or MRI shows up anything, I don't see how I'm far off where I was this time last year so it seems odd to treat. Fingers crossed I will get to do a term at least with Sam starting school.
Anyway, all good for now bar the sore back from the BMB!!!! And I can cope with that one!