Sunday, February 3, 2008

Greetings from ALASKA!!!!! errrrr,,,,NEBRASKA!

Nothing against my home state but I can't help but wonder "why in the world someone would live here!!!!"

Pat took my oldest son, Mikel and I to the Tucson airport last Wed morning and we flew out here to Omaha, Nebr. and checked into the University of Nebr Medical Center. When we arrived, we were met by my good friends and Mikel's Aunt and Uncle, Larry and Judie Johnson. It was GREAT seeing them again and they graciously took us to the Nebraska House which is a part of of this very large Medical Complex. It was brutally COLD!!! Everybody was dressed like Eskimo's.

Early the next morning Mikel began his preparation for the Bone Marrow Transplant. It was a FULL day of tests and answering questions and filling out forms. At 4:30 he began the series of shots he has to take to increase the number of stem cells in his blood. This is done because the amount of stem cells in your body is normally very low. There are two medicines called Growth Factors that are used. They are Neupogen and Leukine and will increase the number of cells in the blood stream. These are two shots and have to be administered very slowly because they will cause extreme pain if given fast. These shots will be given every morning at 9:30am and on Monday Feb 4th the Stem Cell collection will begin. We will start the day at 7am with more growth factor shots, then at 8am the actual Stem Cell collection process begins. Mikel will be hooked up to a machine that will pull blood from his arm into the machine and remove certain cells from his blood; and then pump the rest of the blood from the machine back into him. This machine will continue to pump blood from him, into it and then back until about 12 quarts of blood have passed through the machine. This process will take from 4 to 6 hours. If enough Hematopoietic stem cells are not collected with one collection, the collection process will be repeated the next day. These Stem Cells are then frozen until Scott has received sufficent Chemo and his body is ready for the Transplant. This will be at least a week after Mikel has donated.

It's very interesting that these Hematopietic stem cells collected for Scott will be maintained in storage until his death or until his Physician indicates that there is no further need for them. Thats neat!!! So if Scott should need more at a later date, they will already have them on hand. WOW,, the wonders of modern medicine!!!

Our flight plans call for us to fly back to Tucson on Thursday. If all goes as planned we should be back in the WARM country and we can put these winter coats back where they belong,,,in STORAGE!!!! Here are a few pictures of our trip and the area:

Tuscon Airport at 7:45 AM heading to OMAHA...

Pat has to STOP here,,,,,,,ticketed passengers only beyond this point........Bye Dear!!!!! Gonna miss ya!!!!

Wasn't long until we were there and the process began!!! Shots, Shots and more Shots!!!

This is the Lied Transplant Center. We have nice room here and all the medical offices and rooms are all right here. This is also the same place Scott will have his Last HEAVY 5-6 days of Chemo and then the transplant.........After that, he has to stay here within 10 minutes of the place for 3 months..........It's 55 miles from his home......

This is the Nebraska Cafe where we eat all of our meals...

We are all looking forward to the BIG day, MONDAY. The day of the donation. Then the next REALLY, REALLY Big day will be the TRANSPLANT. That will hopefully happen in 6 to 10 days. We are all praying that it is successful!!! Please keep Scott in your prayers!!!

There are more pictures of this superb Medical Center on my Web Albums and I will be adding more as it happens.....

click here:

See ya all next week end!!!

It's a GREAT DAY!!!!!

Take care

Mike & Mikel

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