Monday, April 18, 2011

Drains, Bacteria & Clinical Trials

Let's start with the drain... Nick went down to radiology so they could see what that rascal drain was up to. Turned out it was clogged near the cap so they just snipped it off and added a new cap. Tah dah! Two liters were promptly drained and a portion sent off to see if it had bacteria in it. Regardless of where the infection started, they will pull the drain from his stomach if the fluid has bacteria. Nick's body is already flippin out trying to kill the whopper infection he has going on and the big, long, plastic foreign object is upsetting to his body and the bacteria thinks it is a great place to lodge on to, so out it goes. Yes, turns out it had bacteria in it so Nick is getting it removed as I type, properly medicated, of course! Actually, testing positive to bacteria means that it is an infection, not tumor growth, so it's a good thing!

Nick's pain is still intense and they have agreed to up his pain medication. They are pretty sure the pain is due to the bacterial infection. They are giving him whopper antibiotics to help tackle it (white blood cell count now up to 23). He still has a fever hovering around 101 and his pulse remains at 120. He hasn't been able to sleep more than a few minutes at a time and he is exhausted.

Dr. Gouw, Katie & Grace came to check on Nick and to discuss the clinical trial. The trial has two parts; the first one starts by giving the patient three increased doses of the drug while monitoring the effect. The second part starts where the first one ended, giving only the highest dosage deemed safe by the prior test. Dr. Gouw said Nick's tumor sample not only tested positive to the test drug, but SCREAMED positive. This is really encouraging to Dr. Gouw. That being said, he wants to hold off on starting Nick on the trial for a couple of weeks and since his scans and blood counts indicate infection vs. tumor growth, he thinks it will be ok. We still have the NY study and possibly chemo for alternative options.

So right now, we are focusing on Nick's battle against this raging infection. I'm home now to shower (the hospital staff will thank me), have dinner with Lee & Kelsey then back to spend the night with Nick. Carly drove up from Provo to go visit him tonight. He isn't quite up to visitors yet, but will feel better when his fever breaks.

Thank you so much that have already reached out to Nick (both spoken and unspoken) and offered up your prayers and support. Today turned out to be a good day.

With love, Lori


Susan Abrams said...

Hello Nick,
We met you at Christ Our Savior UMC in Quartz Hill, CA. Chris Ulvin keeps us updated on your progress. I want you to know you are in our prayers and we look forward to your next visit to Quartz Hill.

May God Richly Bless You Nick!
Susan & Robert Abrams

Lorin Decker Buck said...

Hi Nick and Lori,

Those infections can really wipe you out and be very scary. But, as always, you guys are handling this latest crisis like troupers and getting things resolved. I hope Nick feels 100-percent better in the next few days.


Anonymous said...

Your Aunt Chris keeps us informed about your progress. Your in our prayers! Always remember how much you are loved.

Robert and Cathy Rough
Quartz Hill

Chris Ulvin said...

Good Morning Nick and Lori,
Good news! I will pray against infection though - not as scary as cancer but still deadly. This week is a reminded of life and miracles - both of which I pray for Nick. Dear Lord, bring more good news to us through Nick and his family this week. I thank you for the Great News in your son Jesus Christ. Amen.
Love, aunt Chris

sdigerolamo said...

Dear Lori and Nick,
I am full of prayers.. HUGE prayers that Nick's pain subsides, that the drain is as normal as it can ever be and that this new clinical trial WORKS!!!

I am sorry to hear about the infection. I hope antibiotics can get rid of it quickly. I know it is scary. Hang in there.... I am thinking of you.
Sarah (Vinnys' Mom)