When I was a small boy I had a dog. He had one ear, one eye, no teeth three legs and no tail. Guess what his name was. "Lucky" That's how I feel.
On 8/22/16 I had a pre-op electrocardiagram for an upcoming prostate operation. Dr. Tyler Peterson the cardiologist, said it looks like you may have an errant amyloid protein settling in your heart because your heart walls are twice a thick as they are suppose to be and that may explain your atrial fibrillation [irregular heart beat]. However, there are several amyloid proteins and we cannot be sure which one you have until we preform more tests. However, You may have 4 months to live unless we start you on a blood thinner, a diuretic, and chemo immediately and that will extend your mortality for 1 to 1.5 years and if you survive we will continue the treatment. Pick us up off the floor! I'm not really sick I'm 73 [old] and a little run down from a bladder infection.
After 30 appointments at Rochester Mayo I watched on the monitor as he went into my heart 5 times and took out 5 snippets of heart tissue and said I had a light chain amyloid that will never be killed by chemo, unless we consider a stem cell transplant which could increase my life expectancy 10 to 15 years and put the amyloid in to remission. He went on to say most people that come to the Dr. with light-chain amyloid have a life expectancy of 7 months because there are no obvious symptoms until fatigue drags you down and you go to the Dr. to late. Back to Lucky! My thanks to Tyler Peterson for playing heads up ball.
Dody and I studied every thing we could and decided to opt for the stem cell transplant as the best option with only a 2-5% chance of mortality because I was diagnosed extremely early in the disease process. I was handed off to a hematologist, Dr.Kourelis of the research and treatment team for amyloidosis at Mayo. This was after another 30 or so appointments and tests.
In the last month I have had 4 chemo treatments which consisted of 15 new pills and a cocktail shot determined by a blood test each week with no ill effects. Lucky!