yorhonda's Journey with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)

Survivor: Leukemia > Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)

Patient Info: Finished active treatment more than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: about 13 years ago, Female, Age: 61

  1. 1
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
    yorhonda's Avatar

    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    I was told I had to see an oncologist, my GP had the appointment all ready made for me, I had to report to the hospital the next day for a test and to be admitted. I DIDNT EVEN KNOW WHAT AN ONGOLOGIST WAS!!!!

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  2. 2
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Bone Morrow test

    Procedure or Surgery

    I had to have a bone morrow test done. I had no idea what it was or what for. The doctor who saw me was the best. He explained everything to me durning the procedure and told me what they thought I had. He was so calming durning the whole thing.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  3. 3
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    The various types of treatment offered.

    Decision Point

    I was told the results came back as AML. I was offered different types of treatment but was recommended to do the most common type of chemo used for my cancer. I was also told the treatment could cause the same cancer it was curing to come back as a secondary cancer. I put my trust in my doctor and did what I had to do. I was in no position nor had the desire to try and figure this out on my own. My mind was still trying to wrap its self around the idea that I had cancer. I was told I had a 50/50 chance of survival.

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  4. 4
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Temporary port put in shoulder

    Procedure or Surgery

    I didnt like the doctor who put my port in. He was a intern and very rude. After that incident , my oncologist stop letting interns touch his patients.

    Went as Expected: Disagree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
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  5. 5
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    The first round of chemo had me in the hospital for about a month and a half. I was lucky and had great insurance at the time. The chemo was about a week long. The rebound took a little longer than a month. My white blood cells were so low they couldnt let me out because I had nothing to fight off infection with. After a month and it not moving up I had to receive shots to help my count come up so I could leave. After my first round I had eight more to go. Each was done in the hospital and I had to stay for a week. The additional rounds were not as strong as the first.

    Easy to Do: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  6. 6
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Implant chemotherapy port

    Procedure or Surgery

    It was kind of funny having two lines hanging from my chest. I did have to purchase a different kind of bra. At first I was scared to change the dressing on it. It took me awhile not to be so frighten. I would have the hospital change it. After a short while it was apart of me. I had my port for about a year. It was strange and scary when they removed it.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
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  7. 7
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Everything you can think of!

    Side Effects

    Let's see, I've experienced a lot..now with some humor please, anemia (had several blood transfusions), bleeding (I was still getting my period, so after a blood transfusion I would hemerrage so they had to shut down my period, this also landed me in the hospital for a week), low platelet counts (had several platelet transfusions), allergic reaction ( to platelet transfusion), Diarrhea (due to ??, they couldnt figure it out and put me on different types of antibiotics), fatigue, fever (due to infection I got from cleaning my daughters retainers, landed me in the hospital for a week and had to continue antibiotics thru my port after I left), mouth sores, hot flashes( so much fun!!), low white blood cells(which I had to take shots for), nausea and little vomiting (gave me the best medication to stop it, would send me to sleep), hair loss (I was the very rare exception, It didnt come back after 2 years, so I had to see the dermatologist for shots in my head for about a year or so, full head now!), shortness of breath, rash face (after chemo I would look like I was sitting in the sun), skin changes (I now have vitiligo, spots all over my skin, but my face, thank god!) bruising (big black and blues all over my legs),chemo brain and memory loss ( there are alot of things and times in my life that I dont remember, it used to bother me at the beginning especially memories about my kids but now we just laugh)

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  8. 8
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Plateletpheresis

    Procedure or Surgery

    This was by far the worst part of the whole process althrough it was the best. Since I was in remission and doing well they wanted to take my platelets and put them on ice indefinitely in case it ever came back and I ever needed a transplant. This process took about two weeks. One of giving myself shots which was horrible, two times a day for seven days to increase my platelet count and one week of lying on a bed with both arms straight out unable to move, with long needles in each arm for about seven to eight hours a day. You couldnt really watch TV and couldnt move. Your arms and legs would cramp up and they would give you tums. The needles would have to be moved because the veins would collapse. In the end my body wouldnt give them the platelet count they wanted to have but they are still sitting in a freezer in the hospital.

    Went as Expected: Disagree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  9. 9
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    about 3 years ago
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    Anniversary

    Celebration

    Well its kind of strange, like I have to whisper so it does not hear me but I am about to celebrate "10 YEARS SINCE I BATTELED AML !!!!" I was given a 50/50 chance of survival and I made it. I never gave up hope and now enjoy each day with all the good and the bad. I'm just so thankful to live it all. I say every thing happens for a reason even if that reason is to give someone else whose going thru the battle HOPE!

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  10. 10
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    10 months ago
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    Birthday

    Celebration

    I just celebrated my 60th birthday!! I am so blessed! G-d had a plan for me because I was not done. I started working with children with autism almost 10 years ago. I am 12 years in remission and coming up to 13 in October. I am thankful every day for my journey and how it deepened my soul. Never loose hope, there is a lesson in every experience and sometimes the lessons are for others.

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  11. 11
    • yorhonda
    • Experience with Acute Myeloid Leukemi...
    over 4 years ago
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    Remission

    Celebration

    YEAAAAAA, after the initial treatment and the 6 additional ones they decided I did not need the last 2. I was in remission and finished. I had one more procedure to do after this. I wasnt going to see the people who had been watching me every week for about a year anymore. It was a very scary moment in time. What had become a part of my life was now over. My life since then has changed so much yet has stayed the same. I went into this as an adventure. I know that sounds obscured. I was going to do this with humor, faith, hope and lots of people behind me cheering me on. I also had two young children watching me and I was going to use this as a lesson. One on never giving up no matter the odds and always having a say, on my term even if its only the decision of what color head cap I was going to wear. I have always been very spiritual and believed things in life happen for a reason and a lesson. Not because of something we did that was bad to punish but to teach us or others. I always believe if we die we are still around so I was and still am not so afraid of death. These beliefs are what kept me going. I was always very positive!! Did not want people around me who were down. In the hospital the nurses and doctors loved to come into my room because I was always happy and positive . I tried to make it as much fun as I could for my kids. We had sleepovers, movie nights, parties, and even studying for tests and homework. I was after school care so my husband could go back to work. After my treatments before I would crash, I would take my kids shopping or whatever they wanted to do, even if it ment wearing a mask..I didnt care, my way, my terms. I would suck it up no matter how crappy I felt because I was making the rules, on my terms even if it ment dying.

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