Week 40 chemo complete: Got my flu vaccination

(photo from flickr)

Last Monday, shop I went in for my monthly big blood test to determine what my Hematology profile is (how my body responds overall to my chemo treatment) and learn what my Serum Proteins (Electrophoresis & Immunoglobulins) are, healing which are my cancer levels. The process was fairly quick. I drank lots of water beforehand and the technician was able to draw blood out of my left arm without difficulty. As I’ve stated before, here in BC I use an online service called myehealth, to get free access to my lab results as soon as available (24 – 30 hours for the big test, same day for the small test).

I’m happy to report that the results are the best since I began chemo in Feb. My cancer levels dropped again and my hematology profile is in the normal range. These results are spectacular. My chemo continues to work exceptionally well fighting my multiple myeloma (MM).

The igG is the general cancer marker used by Hematologists to measure progress in a patient’s cancer level, however each patient can be unique. My particular multiple myeloma resides in the Beta-2 microglobulin region, that is the specific protein marker that we (my Hematologist and I) watch to determine the progress of the chemo treatment on my myeloma each month. It is the best indicator of how effective my Pomalyst chemo is.

Serum Proteins (Electrophoresis & Immunoglobulins) (g/L)
Date Albumin Beta Globulin 2 Gamma Globulin igG igA igM
Reference Range 34.0-53.0 1.8 – 4.8 5.1 – 15.0 6.7 – 15.2 .70 – 4.00 .40 – 2.30
Nov 45 7.7 4.8 12.5 1.00 .68
Oct 48.5 9.0 4.0 13.3 .82 .43
Sept 44.1 9.2 3.2 12.9 .66 .31
Aug 47.7 10.7 3.0 14.8 .62 .32
July 45.8 11.4 3.6 15.7 .56 .37
June 41.2 15.2 3.9 16.5 .49 .40
May 42 17.2 2.5 18.7 .28 .33
Apr 44.4 19.2 1.5 21.4 .29 .41
Mar 39.1 27.1 2.6 27.5 .26 .50
Feb 38.9 33.9 3.0 36.1 .33 .53
Jan 39.3 30.6 3.7 33.4 .29 .22

My Hematology Profile is the Complete Blood Count test I have every 2 weeks that measures my overall health.

Hematology Profile
Date WBC Hemoglobin Platelet Count Neutrophils
Reference Range 4.0 – 11.0 135 – 170 150 – 400 2.0 – 8.0
Nov 8.1 137 387 5.9
Oct 10.5 139 329 8.8
Sept 5.3 130 363 4.4
Sept 13.7 122 304 5.2
Aug 6.1 130 378 4.9
Aug 12.0 133 329 8.3
July 12.8 131 302 9.47
July 4.8 123 386 3.8
June 10.6 124 281 8.0
June 6.5 122 439 4.7
May 12.4 118 271 8.9
May 10.0 118 320 5.2
Apr 12.5 123 297 9.8
Apr 7.6 113 357 3.9
Mar 7.0 133 247 5.6
Mar 6.8 127 467 5.2
Feb 5.5 133 191 4.6
Jan 4.4 129 206 2.3

Feeling great. Doing a happy dance!

To recap: On Sunday, November 8th, I completed Cycle 10 Week 3. I have Multiple Myeloma and anemia, a rare blood cancer. It is incurable, but treatable. From February to November 2013, I received Velcade chemo through weekly in-hospital injections as an outpatient. Since February 9th 2015, I have been on Pomalyst and dexamethasone chemo treatment (Pom/dex). I start Cycle 11 on November 16th.

Weekly chemo-inspired self-portraits can be viewed in my flickr album.

Sunset in a UBC ForestSept 2012: UBC Pacific Spirit Park
Week 40 chemo complete: Got my flu vaccination

On Remembrance Day (November 11th) I was at Stanley Park and attended the Japanese Canadian War Memorial Remembrance Day Ceremony. Afterwards, purchase
I wandered into the woods to take my self-portrait. Thankfully it was a sunny day.

flushot2015Last week I went to a medical clinic to get my annual flu vaccination. My Hematologist recommends it as I’m at high risk of a serious illness due to my cancer. The specific vaccine I was given is called Fluviral and it is free in BC for anyone that is also high risk (e.g. pregnant, prescription
heart disease, pharm seniors).

To recap: On Sunday, November 15th, I completed Cycle 10 Week 4. I have Multiple Myeloma and anemia, a rare blood cancer. It is incurable, but treatable. From February to November 2013, I received Velcade chemo through weekly in-hospital injections as an outpatient. Since February 9th 2015, I have been on Pomalyst and dexamethasone chemo treatment (Pom/dex). I started Cycle 11 yesterday.

Weekly chemo-inspired self-portraits can be viewed in my flickr album.

River Rock Casino MarinaJune 2014: River Rock Casino Marina

About tyfn

From December 2019 I've been on Darzalex (daratumumab) IV chemo with Velcade (Bortezomib) injection chemo + dexamethasone. Have Multiple Myeloma + anemia, a rare incurable cancer of the immune system. Life goal: To spread awareness about Multiple Myeloma through my self-portraits. UBC MSc Grad.
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2 Responses to Week 40 chemo complete: Got my flu vaccination

  1. Willow Jones says:

    Great minds think alike Phillip. I received my flu shot as soon as it became available in Ontario. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of a cure as the old adage goes.

    Phillip, what a feat you’ve accomplished; forty weeks of chemo under your belt. That is quite an accomplishment, my friend. Keep on keeping on as we used to say in the 70s.

    You look like you’re element in the beauty of nature, As well. the photo you took of the marina was shot at the optimum time of day when the grey. metallic hues of the cylindrical casings emit an subtle, electrical mist across the marina. Nice photo!

    • tyfn says:

      Thanks. I enjoy photography and I’m happy I got my flu shot as I feel safer. Also, here I would need a mask to go to a Vancouver hospital if I didn’t get it.

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