Chemo Holiday!!!!

Today was scheduled to be my 13th chemo session, but it turned out to be a “chemo snow day” for Jimmy….no chemo!!!!!!! Yippie!

I did meet with Dr. P to go over the results of the CT scan I had on Monday. Although the report didn’t show any significant reduction of the in the size of the tumors ๐Ÿ™this time, it did indicate “internal cystic changes suggesting necrosis.” So the size of the tumors is stable, but it looks like they are dying. I very much like those words “they are dying”.  There are no signs of any of cancer naughtiness going on in any of my other internal organs, they are all “unremarkable.” My blood count, immune system, kidney and liver ๐Ÿท function are all normal.  Unfortunately I am having a few more side effects as a result of treatment.  The most troublesome is caused by the drug 5-FU.  5-FU slows down cell division. Since cancer cells multiply much faster than normal cells, this slows down cancer.  But it also effects some normal cells, among them are skin.  One side effect of 5-FU is “hand and foot syndrome.” Your hands and feet suffer from tingling, burning, redness and cracking skin.  This has become a problem for me over the past six weeks. One of the treatments for this side effect is to reduce friction.  My left foot is in a brace and friction is a consequence that cannot be avoided when I walk.  Speaking of walking, since I use crutches, I essentially walk on my hands with constant friction on the crutch handles…ouch!  Dr. P suggested applying Eucerin lotion and DMSO.  I have been using both and things have improved, my left foot is fine and my hands are improving.

Dr. P is very pleased.  I am responding extremely well to the chemo treatment, especially considering I am not taking oxalaplatin.  Oxalaplatin is a very effective drug colon cancer but causes neuropathy, nerve damage to the hands and feet.  Because of the extensive nerve damage I suffered as a result of polio, we elected to pass on this drug. In light of this drug omission, my response to treatment is amazing. I am blessed.   Dr. P has scheduled a PET scan for next week to gather more detail and, if the results confirm his suspicions, he will reduce my treatment to a maintenance regimen of Avastin only. That means fewer side effects, no “hand and foot syndrome”, and no 46-hour pump infusions.  Hopefully I will have great news next week when I meet with Dr. P again.

BUT…..there could be a fly in the ointment.  The past few weeks I’ve had a couple instances of double vision.  These instances have been right before I go to sleep, after a couple of glasses of wine and 1 mg of alaprazolam.  I’ve had episodes of double vision for years, but that’s after consumption of a bottle or two of fine wine๐Ÿ˜„.   I’m assuming my current regimen, combined with chemo fatigue, is the cause.  However there is a small (2%)  chance that my cancer has metastisized in my brain. So instead of chemo today I enjoyed 45 minutes nestled inside a horribly noisy narrow tube doing an MRI of my brain.  I consider this just due diligence.  I doubt there is anything going on in my brain, in fact Lee has been telling me that for years!

Enough of this cancer crap.  Let’s look  my latest silly paintings and a booth Lee & I shared this past weekend at a local arts and craft extravaganza.

 

The Quail Creek Fall Festival presents the anazing art of Lee and Jimmy Asbell!
 
 
Regina spiked her hair. curled her eye lashes, added a touch of eye shadow and lipstick for the TGIF party.
 
 
Ronald gets so happy when its time for a walk his eyes almost disappear.
 
 
Leroy is very popular with the lady kitties in the neighborhood. Could it be the shape of his nose?
 
 

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29 thoughts on “Chemo Holiday!!!!

  1. BRING ON THE FUCK YOU FIVE! Or close enough. What a great name for a cancer drug. Jim, the paintings are bright and clever and fun – much like you. May have to send you guys a photo of our Charlie for a portrait.

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    1. I never thought of the name of the drug, that’s funny. Never thought of the “FU” as Fuck You… I love it. I’d love to paint Charlie, but I’m backed up with orders for Xmas, so I wouldn’t be able to get done till January

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  2. Sounds like you are making great progess Jim! As always, I enjoy reading your blogs and feel like we “catch up” even though you don’t hear much from me. Love your paintings and the way all of your critters always look happy – or at least engaged! Thanks for sharing and prayers continue!

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    1. Thank you, I love animals. When we were at the arts and craft show this weekend, almost everyone that walked by smiled at my silly creatures. It made me happy to see my art bring a touch of happiness to them

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  3. Fantastic news, Jim. I hope it works out that you go on an “Avastin only” chemo regimen. 5-FU can be a downer for sure–especially since it takes the two extra days (and the fanny pack) for the infusion. Your spirit, your super art, your excellent nurse/sommelier, Lee–your expert docs–you will prevail.

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  4. We always cheer at good news, so hip, hip hooray! Prayers are continuing…
    Hope to send an e-mail later tonight with news re: future vacation plans.
    John & Kathie

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  5. eucerin I know and think it is one of the few lotions that actually helps dry skin . what was the other thing you use? dsmo or something. what’s that? whatever, I am glad they are helping. enjoy the snow day. I have never had an mri but everyone hates the noise it makes. wouldn’t you think they could do something about it. so here’s hoping for an avastin only regimen.
    love you, marian

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    1. DMSO is used for lots of veterinarian stuff, it’s unregulated. I use a a variation, MSM. The noise is ridiculous, I don’t understand why it’s so loud The noise is varied, machine gun fire, clunking, whirling, banging, the list goes on…..

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      1. it’s sort of adding insult to injury. people having such tests are stressed enough. and we want to put a man on the moon. wouldn’t you think we could do something about this! grr.

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  6. ..John and I rejoice with you and Lee! Such great news! We love your latest offerings and I’m sure glad I got my kitty cat’s painted
    before you got so famous! Mucho Amore…Warmest Aloha~
    Hope to see you soon (at Pat and Buzzes) before we head to a warmer climate. Brrrrrrrrr!

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  7. Good news is good. And next you have a PET scan. Is that like being at a PETing zoo, or maybe it’s that you will be scanning for the next PET painting you’ll be doing. Well, whatever it is, I know you will paint something splendid. Both of you and your arts are alive and well and they make me smile.

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  8. Hi Jim and Lee,

    This all seems very positive – Hooray! By all means, try to avoid reducing the wine regimen – wine has been
    shown to have very positive effects on health.

    Hope you had lots of orders for new paintings at the Art Show last weekend.

    Kathy

    Date: Thu, 12 Nov 2015 00:00:22 +0000
    To: kofollett@hotmail.com

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Glad to read your updates Jim, and hear things are pretty positive. Hang in there! I just love your paintings..so amazing how much you’ve advanced in a short time. I went to a wine and paint party last week and my painting ( first since 7th grade) was no worse than anyone else’s. And it was so fun! Keep your creations coming!

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  10. I am so happy your doctors reports are so good. My thoughts and prayers are with you for continued good health and vast improvements in your art skills! ๐Ÿ™‚ Speaking of nothing “going on in your head” I did speak for a long period of time last night to Tom Frisch. He sends his best wishes! He was very tired and incoherient as he had to endure a visit from John Smith down there in Florida for the prior 6 hours he said….during the course of their conversations, Tom did tell me he was able to speak a few words between Smithies’ pauses to take a breath!!! LOL!!! I need to send you a picture of Bella to see what you can do with her (our dog). Best wishes Jim!

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  11. So happy to hear of your excellent results. Will continue to pray for a negative PET scan and reduced medication. Thank you for sharing your paintings. I love them, bright and cheerful. Always brings a smile on!!

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