Sep 19, 2019 Latest post:
Jan 31, 2020
Follow along on Maria's battle with AML.
NOTICE!!! Tributes or donations to CaringBridge are NOT donations to Maria or her family. There is a Go Fund Me page, that can be found via the "Ways to Help" in the ribbon. Any funds raised on the "Go Fund Me" in excess of Maria's medical related costs will be donated to Dana Farber or a similar charity.
How did we get here? Maria, aka Connie, had been feeling generally run down, along with a sore wisdom tooth and some early morning nausea. After a rough Sunday with pain she decided, with urging from her Husband, to go to urgent care on Monday Sep 9th, 2019. They did not find any specific virus, so Maria proceeded to her dentist who found an infection near her wisdom tooth and advised to get her wisdom teeth removed and prescribed antibiotics.
On Wed. 9/11 she went to the oral surgeon for a pre-op visit, her pain was getting worse every day. On Thur 9/12 the pain was so bad she scheduled the tooth extraction for Friday 9/13. Late in the day on 9/12 she vomited for the first time, and then several more times throughout the night.
Upon arrival at the surgeon on Friday, he observed severe swelling along with her recent vomiting he could not operate on her wisdom teeth. He advised her to go to emergency room. So we went to Good Samaritan, right next door. They performed some simple blood tests and within 2 hours we had results that her white blood cells were high, apx 6-10 times normal. They began admitting her and performing several more tests.
After a very restless night, on 9/14/2019 at 11:39am Maria was told by her doctor that he was 90% sure she had Leukemia. He immediately began working to get her a bed at Brigham and Women's/Dana Farber Hospital in Boston. Maria was then transported via Ambulance from Brockton to Boston. Within minutes of arrival at this new facility she was greeted by a team of doctors, nurses, and phlebotomist.
The team worked like a well oiled machine, but in such a manner that reassured us she would be getting the best care possible. I recall nurse Betsy, stopping to get on one knee and while looking Maria in the eye, tell her a likely scenario of some things to come. Betsy made sure to say the scenario included Maria leaving the hospital after several weeks. Her words were so frank, but delivered with such compassion it was calming. Within 2 hours of arrival, @ 9pm on 9/14, the hematologist returned to inform her that he was almost certain that she had leukemia, but many more tests would be needed for certain as well as type and treatment plan.
On Monday 9/16/2019, Maria was informed that she had leukemia, but her blood alone was not enough for the pathologists to identify the specific type of leukemia. She would need a bone Marrow Biopsy to determine the type.
On 9/18/2019 at 5:30pm, Dr. Winer informed Maria for certain that she had AML, Acute Myeloid Leukemia. THe team still needed more results to be definitive in the genetic makeup for a treatment plan.
on 9/19/2019 at 5pm, Dr Winer was able to present the genetic results along with the plan to attack and beat this awful disease.
Maria will begin her ChemoTherapy treatments on Friday 9/20/2019. This is when we begin to fight back.