10 August 2012

Day 3 - Medication Details

Millennium Falcon is complete!
Playing U-Build Battleship with Caleb.

This is the white board in Caleb's room that lists all the treatments he will be receiving.  I will go over each one in detail below.

1. & 2. ATGAM:  Anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG) is an infusion of horse or rabbit-derived antibodies against human T cells which is used in the prevention and treatment of acute rejection in organ transplantation and therapy of aplastic anemia.
  • Basically, ATGAM weakens the bodies immune system, so it body doesn't reject the new bone marrow.
  • Caleb had the horse-derived version of this drug
  • Side effects: nausea, diarrhea, mouth and/or throat sores, aches and pains, headaches, night sweats, and unusual tiredness
  • Given through IV
3. Cyclophosphamide:  (Chemotherapy) A synthetic cytotoxic drug used in treating leukemia and lymphoma and as an immunosuppressive agent.  In order to work, cyclophosphamide first is converted by the liver into two chemicals, acrolein and phosphoramide. Acrolein and phosphoramide are the active compounds, and they slow the growth of cancer cells by interfering with the actions of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) within the cancerous cells. Unfortunately, normal cells also are affected, and this results in serious side effects. In addition to slowing the growth of cancerous cells, cyclophosphamide also suppresses the immune system and is referred to as immunosuppressive. 
  • Side effects:  hair loss, vomiting, diarrhea, mouth sores, weight loss, sterility, and jaundice. Can also cause kidney failure and heart and lung problems.
  • Suppresses production of blood cells from the bone marrow, including white blood cells (leukopenia), red blood cells (anemia) and platelets (thrombocytopenia).
  • Leukopenia reduces the ability of the body to fight infection, thrombocytopenia impairs the ability of blood to clot, and anemia reduces the ability of blood to carry oxygen. 
  • May cause inflammation of the urinary bladder with bleeding
  • Can cause lower abdominal pain and problems urinating
  • Given through IV
4. Mensa: This drug is used to protect the bladder and kidneys from the effects of the chemotherapy drugs.
  • Side effects: nausea, vomiting, taste changes, diarrhea, headache, joint pain, tiredness, weakness, and irritability
  • Given through IV

5. Solu-MedrolA steroid that decreases inflammation in the body and is used to treat a wide variety of diseases.
  • Side effects: nausea, dry skin, headache, stomach pain, dizziness, insomnia
  • Given through IV

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