Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Pie Making

Our apple trees are loaded! (Gil is the pastry chef here.)

There are plenty of apples from our eight apple trees to share among the hungry deer and our Wednesday lunch guests -- who always get treated to a freshly baked homemade pie each time they visit. (Hey, it's the least we can do.) They (our lunch friends) are still having to stay within the one hour drive's confines of Karmanos until they are further along into their recovery, and we have such a nice place only 45 minutes away where they can spend the day with us here in Milford, have lunch free from restaurant pathogens and take a long, leisurely walk.

Our clinic appointment on Monday went well. We got one of the reports we've been waiting for. It's the one-month post transplant analysis of the percentage of Genie's donor cells that have taken over for Gil's diseased cells.

There are two lines of cells that are being produced by Genie's cells. Her cells are producing 100% of Gil's myeloid line of cells which are responsible for the red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. Of course, the myeloid line was where the original leukemic mutations manifested themselves in the disease process.

The other line of cells being produced is the lymphoid line and Genie's cells have only taken over 65% of that function. Gil's cells are still producing 35% of the those cells. The lymphoid cells are responsible for producing lymphocytes.

The team is expecting the lymphoid line to be at or near 100% by the 90-day visit.

A lymphocyte is a type of white blood cell and there are three major types -- T cells, B cells and natural killer (NK) cells.

T cells provide cell-mediated immunity -- they recognize pathogen-infected cells. B cells provide humoral immunity (relating to antibodies). Natural killer cells defend the host from both tumors and virally infected cells.

Gil's body is susceptible to all these infections -- bacterial, viral and fungal -- for the near future.

His immune system is the equivalent of a newborn's at this time. He will need all the vaccinations that a newborn receives. These vaccinations will begin one year post transplant for Gil -- childhood diseases, polio, etc. He will receive the H1N1 vaccine at the six month mark. (I am getting mine this week.)

There has been a flurry of photographing going on around here and Gil promises to post his own entry later this week letting you know what he's up to and showing some of his recent favorite images.

Stay tuned!


Waking before dawn
A full day always scheduled
Night comes too quickly.

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