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Last Chemo Delayed - RBC Sudden Drop
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Member Since:
30 November 2022
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28 March 2023 - 10:41 pm
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Hi all! It’s been a few since I’ve posted. 
today was Arya’s last chemo post rear amp for osteosarcoma. 
Bloodwork showed a significant drop in her RBC. 6weeks ago it was 48%, 3 weeks ago it was 45% , and today it was 30%. 
Her oncologist said this is a significant drop , indicative of something underlying going on. We had a full chem panel done that showed all her liver function tests elevated. We are going back tomorrow for a liver ultrasound. 

I am so worried. Though the vet said with it being so sudden she feels infection is more likely (possibly hepatitis?!) vs cancer but reminded me that there is still that possibility of cancer. Ugh!!! She has been acting fine, just a bit fatigued but not to the point that I was concerned. Appetite was down too but that has been an off and on issue since starting chemo. 

On the plus, her chest X-ray looked good. 
man I was so hoping to celebrate finishing chemo. What a blow! Keep all fingers, toes, and paws crossed for Arya tmrw. Hoping for the best. 

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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28 March 2023 - 10:55 pm
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And it looks likely is some type of infection. 

When the drop first started occurring, were any antibiotics prescribed and was there any delay between the chemo?

I know this makes you concerned, but Vet's often do share sort of a worst case scenario just as a cya procedure

Overall Arya is feeling good, alert, eating faurly well, drinking etc. Up and down appetite and a little bit of tirednrss sound like normal chemo side effects. BTW great news that the X-ray show clear.

How many rounds of chemo has she had? Some on codes go with four, some with five, some with six.  

Try not to worry, okay? This does happen and usually an infection is the culprit.

Hugs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Member Since:
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29 March 2023 - 6:29 am
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Thanks for your response <3. She did not prescribe anything with the first drop and there was no delay with 4th chemo.

I remember she mentioned the slight drop at the time but wasn’t concerned and said we will just see how the next looks in 3 weeks. 

she is to have a total of 5 rounds of carboplatin.  I wonder if it will be decided to just end with 4 if this does end up being an infection, as I would imagine it would need a few weeks of treatment. I just have to wait and see later this morning. Will keep you guys posted!

The Rainbow Bridge



Member Since:
25 April 2007
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29 March 2023 - 11:00 am
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Arya and Jenny, it's good to hear from you. Sorry for the situation, this is such a roller coaster isn't it?!  Try to focus on how well she is doing otherwise, don't forget to celebrate that (and clear x-rays too ...wheeee!).

I have no idea what could be happening with a situation like this so as soon as you're able please let us know. We are sending TONS of Tripawd Power your way!

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29 March 2023 - 11:13 am
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Fingers crossed for you! 

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29 March 2023 - 12:01 pm
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Well Tripawd family, we got the news nobody wants to hear. She has cancer all throughout her liver and looks like there’s some spread to her kidney. 
Absolutely heartbreaking as I’m sure many of you know the feeling. Not sure if it was the osteo that spread or a different cancer but at this point it does not change anything. 
just going to try to focus on giving her the best time and comfort. My fear is waiting too long and she’s suffering. This is going to be the next hardest decision to make. When to let her go….

Livermore, CA




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29 March 2023 - 12:35 pm
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Oh man, what a blow!!!  I'm so sorry.

It doesn't sound like OSA, but as you said it doesn't matter.  My Pug Maggie lost her leg to mast cell cancer and later developed oral melanoma.  That second cancer diagnosis hit harder than anything to do with the first cancer- my heart hurts for you.

When Mag was diagnosed with the second cancer and we decided there was nothing to be done I immediately made a list of things that defined her minimum life quality.  I wanted to think it though before she started a serious decline.  It helped me to have that written down so I woud not think about that all the time and I could focus on making every day Maggie's best day.

Another thing I would recommend- is look into where you want things to end.  I lost my 16 year old Pug boy last summer- and while he wasn't dealing with a disease he was slowly declining. I had made contact with a vet who made home visits so I knew how to get a hold of her and how far in advance I had to contact her when I thought he was ready.  Again- some peace of mind having that arraigned so I could just focus on him.

Here is a Link to The Penny Jar Method to Measure Life Quality

Here is a Link to Quality of Life Scale

This is such a tough part of the Journey.  Remember to focus on the fact that Arya is still here, don't let stress and grief take away one moment of the precious time you have with her.

 

Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls and Boy

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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29 March 2023 - 3:16 pm
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   real kick in the gut.  So stunned.  This just sucks and I'm somaorry younger this unexpected  curve ball.

As you noted, Arya is feeling fine and, most imp, hasn't  heard a thing about any kive tweets, etc, etc,  She is still Arya and blissfully  unaware  of any prognosis and continues  to live in the present,   Unfortunately we hoomans process things differently and need to master the art of living in the now just like our dogs. 

No longer needing anymore chemo injections could actually help her appetite  now and help her feel less tired.  For now, she definitely  is not '"suffering" nor in any pain.  Hopefully she stays that way for a long time.

Did the Vet mention  any options as far as ways to support the liver and continue to keep her comfortable  like Milk Thistle, denamarin (sp), or Sam-E ?  

Karen gave great input in how to go ahead and make "lists", plans, etc so you can put all that behind  you and be fully present with Arya.

As you already know, the most I'm thing you can do is to not let this piece of crap disease  interfere  with your time together now.  You can still make treasured  memories, you can still spoil and love and snuggle and go to McDonald's with her to eat cheeseburgers.  And yes, lots of pictures.  And don't  forget selfies with her beautiful self. 

Continue to make everyday a celebration of the joy of Arya being with you NOW.  

With love

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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29 March 2023 - 3:46 pm
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Thank you Karen and the spirit pugs for those links and your insight. I am going to work on a list with my husband so I won’t have to constantly keep track in my head and lose out on being in the moment. 
This second cancer diagnosis definitely does hit harder! Especially since there’s nothing more to do…

benny - the vet said to continue her rimadyl to help with inflammation and gave me zofran for nausea if needed later (I still have cerenia too). She also recommended getting some called Yunnan Baiyao - a Chinese herb that is very effective with controlling bleeding. Since she suspects there may be an internal bleed going on due to the rbc drop. 

she didn’t mention anything for pain and I didn’t even think to ask. I guess since we both saw how “normal” she. Though I know dogs are good at hiding pain but typically Arya shows subtle signs like not eating. She still wants to eat everything (except plain kibble). 

Virginia







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22 February 2013
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29 March 2023 - 4:17 pm
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Yes,  Yunnan Baiyao has been shown to have some pawsitive benefits if there is some internal bleeding,  Glad that was recommended. JERRY can refresh my mem, but seems a member was jist highlighted for keeping hermangisarcoma  under control  far beyond the "normal expectancy " for that awful disease.  Yunnan Baiyao was part of the protocol.

 

Also, here's a link from Dr Dressler  avout. Yunnan Baiyao.  https://www.dog.....g-cancers/

Arya gave me a chuckle  turning her nose up at her kibble.  Yeah, she's holding out for steak and pot roast....and I bet she gets it!

((((((Hugs))))))

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

The Rainbow Bridge



Member Since:
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29 March 2023 - 4:39 pm
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Oh no! I'm so sorry, what a terrible shock to get that kind of news. I so wasn't expecting this, we always hope for the best with our Tripawds family and when it doesn't materialize, we all feel the blow. I so wish things like this never happened. It feels so unfair! 

As you said, all you can do at this point is keep her comfortable and focus on quality of life, from day to day. Just as Coco's family is doing right now. Cancer can never take away those treasured times together. They all seem so ordinary before something like this happens. Now we see how magical they really are. And now Arya is showing you how to live in the moment! Focus on her resilience, her attitude, her ability to move from moment to moment without dreading the future or mourning the past. She is such a gift.

I would check in with your vet to see if they can refer you to a hospice vet. They are so good at preparing parents for times like this, and it's comforting to have someone to call who can guide you as the days go on. And of course we will be here too so please don't hesitate to share OK? We are hoping for as many days as possible with your sweet girl, and sending all our sp_hearticon2sp_hearticon2sp_hearticon2  

Member Since:
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30 March 2023 - 7:26 pm
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Thanks Jerry. The onc gave me two referrals for in home vets who do hospice/at home euthanasia. We contacted one just to talk and let them know our situation. 
I fear the time is coming. Though she still perked up for “want to go for a walk?” She seemed spent just walking out for a potty break and that activity made her nauseated.. cerenia and zofran made her feel better but she just looked so out of it and she would just stare at me frequently. As if she was saying goodbye? I don’t know. But the feeling I had all day today was that I can’t let her go on past the weekend. I’m seeing a lot of jaundice and more weakness. 
I gave her the yunnan Baiyao for the first time this evening when she ate a bit of chicken (normally she would chow chicken down but today she just picked at it) and about 30min later she was so nauseated. No vomiting. She looked so uncomfortable tho. Made me feel absolutely terrible for giving her the Baiyao. Guess she doesn’t have the stomach for it. Gave another zofran and she is resting calmly. 
I was so afraid that we’d have to take her in some where. We really want an in home euthanize so I think sooner the better so we can give her that. Hoping tmrw we can get her to the beach and get a hamburger. 
gosh this is so hard. Thanks everyone. 

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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30 March 2023 - 9:12 pm
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It breaks my heart you are seemingly nearing the end of Arya's earth journey.   You are so connected to her and so very tuned into her behavior and every nuance  that defines who she is.  She's so lucky to have a hooman who understands  her with such depth💖

For goodness sakes, don't  feel guilty  about trying the Ynnan Baiyao.   You are trying everthing you can to help her and she knows that....we all know that. I do think that if you are now seeing  jaundice her body is telling you that s**t  disease is taking over.  

You have always done right by Arya and you will "do right" by her to help her transition  peacefully at home.  While she may feel miserable  with the nausea,  it's probably  not a horrible painful thing per se.    It may be  that trip to the beach and hamburger perks her up (relatively speaking)and gives you a Happy memory to hold in your heart.

Please know we are surrounding  you with our love.   We wish for you the peace pf knowing Arya  will be grateful  for a release from her failing earth clothes when the time comes.  🙏

♥️♥️♥️

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

The Rainbow Bridge



Member Since:
25 April 2007
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30 March 2023 - 9:18 pm
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My heart just hurts for you, I'm sorry things are moving so unexpectedly quickly. Cancer. Ugh. smiley7I hope I live to see it eradicated. We've lost way too many beautiful souls to it.

Like Sally mentioned, don't beat yourself up, you are doing your best. Maybe it wasn't even the Yunan B. that made her feel crappy, it could have been something else. You tried, and you helped her feel better quickly so that's what counts. What a relief that you had all those medications to ease her symptoms. 

I'm glad you talked to the hospice vet, as hard as that had to have been. I hope you get to give her a sweet, memorable day tomorrow but no matter how it turns out, just try to remember that this is just one moment of many in her life that were much happier, and healthy. Cancer can never take away those memories you created together. They will last you a lifetime, just like her spirit. 

Sending you all the love and strength in the Tripawds Universe tonight. Know that we are thinking of you both.

Member Since:
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31 March 2023 - 4:50 pm
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Oh man.  I'm so, so sorry.

Feel no guilt, you did everything - and then some - to help Arya have good time, for the time she had.  My heart breaks for you.

You, Arya, and your husband are in my thoughts.  

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