Hello family and friends- we have been so blessed to have so many people reach out about Hannah’s diagnosis. We have decided to create this page so that everyone knew what was going on, and could post positive thoughts and well wishes for our girl.
A few months ago Hannah noticed a lump growing in her neck and went to the doctor to get it checked out. After seeing a dermatologist they referred her to an ENT which they saw in St. Louis. After that appointment it was determined that she would need a biopsy as soon as possible, so on March 26th she had a biopsy done in St. Louis. They were told it would be about a week until the results were in. During this time Hannah remained in school and going to classes, this was her biggest request. Doctors called to inform us that it was Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and that she needed to meet with an oncologist right away. She came home April 3rd and was meeting with Dr. Rampurwala at University of Chicago the next day. At this appointment they went over the diagnosis and what the treatment would look like. Hannah did go back to school this weekend to spend the last few days with her friends. She packed up and headed home for several more scans and tests before her chemotherapy began. Before her first treatment she needed a PET scan, CT scans and echocardiograms, among many other tests, to determine where the cancer had spread. It was determined that she had tumors in both sides of her neck, her chest, right armpit and right leg, and it had not spread to any other organs. After we found this out Dr. R came up with the official treamtnet plan. She would be getting chemotherapy for about 6 months, the drug would be ABVD, and the treatment would be every 2 weeks.
Her first treatment was April 15th (tax day, woo hoo) and she slept for most of the first two days. She did wake up and color Easter eggs the next day with Kathryn, Austin and Jimmy. We were told that the first 7-10 days after treatment were the most ‘crucial’ days so we just chilled out and waited to see what would happen. She had very few side effects, tiredness and jaw pain, but was doing okay overall. The Friday before her next treatment, April 26th, we saw Dr. R for a check-in and blood draw and Hannah also was complaining of tooth pain. She was sent home with an antibiotic and was told if she got a fever over 100.4 that she would need to go to the hospital.
On Saturday, April 27th, Hannah woke up with a fever of 100.5, so we called Dr. R and headed to Silver Cross. She was admitted, and we thought it would be an overnight stay with some antibiotics and home for chemo that following Monday. Boy, were we wrong! She had an infection at her biopsy site, and needed several antibiotics over several days to fight this infection. She ended up staying in the hospital for 6 days, which meant chemo was canceled for Monday. She left the hospital Thursday, with her kidneys functioning at 40%, and went to the dentist to get her tooth removed, because she was unable to fight off a minor infection. So Friday, May 3rd, she went to see Dr. R to see if her kidney levels had improved at all so she could get chemo, they had not, so she returned on Monday.
So Monday, May 6th she went in to see Dr. R again, to hopefully get chemo. They drew her blood levels and her kidneys were still operating at 40%, so no chemo. She got fluids and was told to come back on Wednesday the 8th to recheck. We went back, and her levels were starting to normalize, and she was cleared for chemo. They substituted one of the drugs with a different one, and are hopeful it will help keep her white blood cell levels up. Afterwards she was feeling great and headed to Kathryn’s to hang out for part of the night, she even took the dogs on a walk!
We are hoping that the next two weeks go smoothly, and to keep on a normal schedule. After her first four treatments she will get a repeat PET scan and they are hoping that 85% of it will be gone, and as of right now it is scheduled for June 3rd. Keep the prayers and positive vibes coming our way. We appreciate and love you all.
For those of you who have asked: https://www.mealtrain.com/trains/w3y6ww