Chemotherapy, Cycle 3, Day 1 – Rituxan

Today began my third cycle of R-CVP, in which I receive Rituxan on Mondays and CVP chemo on Tuesday.  As always, I was loaded with pre-meds (Benadryl, Solumedrol and Tylenol) before beginning Rituxan.  The Rituxan antibodies are grown in mice and can therefore cause an allergic reaction…..thus the pre-meds and blood pressure monitoring every half hour.  As my chemo nurse approached after the first half hour, I reached down to scratch my calf.  “Do you have an itch?” she asked.  “Ummmm…..yes, I guess I do” I said.  It was very minor, primarily on my legs, but she wanted to be cautious so the next 30 minutes of Rituxan was given at the same rate.  My blood pressure remained normal throughout the day but the itching continued for a couple of hours, resulting in a pause in my treatment and consultation with my oncologist.  I got through the treatment ok, a bit more sleepy than usual it seemed, but it was fairly uneventful.  I’ll take more bendryl this evening as needed.

Tomorrow I’ll get CVP.  I’m still losing hair but at a slower rate over the last week.  We’ll see what happens after another round of chemo.  I haven’t been riding any more rollercoasters lately, in fact, everything is going quite smoothly in that department.  I’m eating a primarily high fiber, vegetarian diet along with lots of fresh juices and soups.  On Saturday I made a big pot of Butternut Squash and White Bean soup…..not your typical spring meal but this hasn’t been a typical spring.  On Saturday we had seven hailstorms and two “snow events”…..with a couple of sunbreaks thrown in just to keep us wondering.  Sunday’s weather was a bit less wild but still quite cold.

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