Wednesday, February 21, 2007
The Day We've Been Waiting For...Brianna's Transplant
It is almost noon and Brianna's new marrow is almost through being infused. By 1 pm, she will have a new lease on life. This is the second of two bags that doctors were able to get from our generous 24-year-old female donor from somewhere overseas. All our hopes and prayers were answered with this unknown young woman who agreed to an immediate harvest of her marrow stem cells.
The doctors say it will take 24 hours from the stem cells to find their way to her marrow. The vast majority of the cells will be taken to the lungs, where they will just die and the body will carry them away. Those that make their home in the marrow, will immediately identify it as the right environment to stay and begin the long process of reproducing. In about two to three weeks, some of her blood counts will begin to show signs that the new marrow is making white blood cells - usually the first "line" to show up. Brianna's remaining "lines" will slowly start to come in during the following weeks.
Last night, I couldn't sleep much thinking about this miraculous process and all the steps this marrow must go through before it made its way to our daughter. Coming from overseas was a long way to travel and we thank God it make its here safely.
I am humbled by our donor's willingness to go through a minor surgical procedure. And, her willingness to spend the night in a hospital - which most adult donors endure. And that she welcomed the pain that may follow the harvest.
At the same time, I am so grateful for the wonderful doctors and nurses who are taking care of us here. The Stanford Children's Hospital Bone Marrow Transplant unit is filled with caring, compassionate people! For the past two days, Lindsay has been our sweet nurse taking care of us and answering our calls from the nurse call button.
During Brianna's transplant, her vitals are being taken every 30 minutes and she's hooked up to a heart and respiratory monitor to ensure she stays stable. Her blood pressure did rise a bit with all the fluids and marrow they were pumping into her. But it was quickly rectified with a dose of Lasix (a fast acting diuretic that had her running to the bathroom several times within 15 minutes) and a blood pressure medicine that she swallowed.
She's doing great now and so we wait. Thank you for your continued prayers! They're helping!!