Friday, April 5, 2019

Started Optune, Chemotherapy, and Physical Therapy

We had many visits to various medical offices over the past few weeks. More than the usual fare. That is normal life for a Glioblastoma patient who also happened to break his left knee last June. 😅

It does look like my body has been able to tolerate the new round of radiation therapy very well. Only complaints so far seems to be short spells of fatigue once in a while, and a couple of no-hair-here bald spots on the top of my head.

Second round with Optune:

I am a strong believer of the benefits of Optune for Glioblastoma patients, as evidenced by my earlier statement: I like being alive. So I will wear Optune always forever. I was using Optune for over 90% of the day everyday for nearly 16 months from March 2017 to June 2018. 

In June 2018, I had my first recurrence. At that time, my confidence in Optune was severely shaken, and I decided to stop using Optune. 

Very recently I changed my mind about Optune and decided to give it another shot. The original tumor site has been very stable. The recurrence was in a totally different part of the brain. This makes me believe that my aggressive usage of Optune did help. And it could still help keep the tumor at bay for a few more months/years. 

Started this round with Optune a week ago, and have been able to seamlessly incorporate it into my daily life very quickly.

Chemotherapy with Lomustine:

The chemotherapy treatments this time also has been totally different from the daily Temozolomide tablets I used to take during my previous rounds. 

This time I take 180mg of Lomustine tablets orally once every six weeks. Lomustine is said to be a slow-acting drug, and could cause blood-counts to drop rapidly towards the end of the six-week-cycle. My Oncologist has arranged for me to visit the office for blood-work every week while I am on this treatment - to keep an eye on my blood-counts. 

I also got a Pulmonary Function Test done before starting on Chemotherapy.

The first dose I took early this week seemed to make me mildly nauseous the next day. 

Physical Therapy:

My attempt at starting to run again failed miserably with a very stiff right-foot. That made me finally pay heed to the advice my Orthopedic Surgeon has been giving about starting Physical Therapy. 😆

Turns out my totally inactive life-style since the knee injury last June has made me stiff in many parts of my body. Regular stretching exercises and some good habits around fitness and stretching should get me back on the road very soon. 

It does look very realistic that I will be able to train for and complete the 26.2 miles distance at the Chicago Marathon on October 13th this year. 💪🏽🙏🏽 

The story so far

It has been a month since I decided to start a blog to journal my journey with Glioblastoma Multiforme after bei...