Monday, September 16, 2013

Back on Sprycel; Side Effects Return

I have returned to the land of Battling CML! I resumed my Sprycel intake, eleven days ago. This time, I was happy to do so. With my last PCR being negative (a great thing for those of us with CML), I am extremely anxious for it to remain there. To do so, I must be on my medication.  Feeling crummy when you receive good lab results is so much more tolerable, than when you receive unfavorable ones. I am SO ready to get back on this horse!

My oncologist suggested that I waited until my pleural effusion cleared up, and then to begin taking 140 mg, 5 days a week, as opposed to 140mg, 6 days a week. Since I could tell that my PE wasn’t quite cleared up, and I was beginning to freak out because I had been off of my medication for two and a half weeks, I asked him If I could begin taking 70mg of Sprycel, just to get some of it back in my body, and see how my lungs would respond.

I suppose that he knows how stubborn I can be, so he just said, “That would be fine.” So, that is what I have done. The results are: my PE seems to have cleared up; I would say that it is 95% gone. However, some of my side effects have returned. The most bothersome side effect is the back spasms, I have been absolutely miserable with those. I cannot sit for very long, lying down can be torturous, but at least standing and walking are tolerable; I was even able to dance, a bit!

The mouth sores have reappeared, but fortunately only two of them, and they are not too horrible, yet. I am getting that flu-y, fever-y feeling, late in the afternoons, and am much more tired than I was, while I was off of the medication. I suppose that these are to be expected, and I find that it is interesting that they are present, on half the dose of medication. I am thinking that the vinegar is helping with the absorption, and really is an accurate proposal.

At a Friend's Wedding
I imagine that eventually my body will begin to adjust to the Sprycel again, and that these side effects won’t seem as bad; regardless, I am grateful to be able to continue fighting, for another, negative PCR.
All of this makes me wonder if I really do need to be on 140mg, even five days a week, to remain in PCRU. How much should I experiment and gamble? I was planning on upping my dose this week, to 100mg per day, to see if my PE remains stable; but the next question would be, do I remain at 100 mg, or do I go back up to 140mg, 5 days a week.

My brain is leaning towards 100mg, 7 days a week equaling 700 mg a week, which is the same amount as 140mg, 5 days a week. I suppose that I will email my oncologist and see what he says, but in the meantime, what do you think?


Bricks for the Brave!!