Here we are again! We got to the hospital Monday afternoon. Ethan had a chest X-ray, an echocardiogram, and an EKG. He did great besides having to take his shirt off for the X-ray. He was not a fan. We got up to our room and our doctor came to tell us that his port was out of place, and he might have to do surgery to get it fixed. They tried to do a power flush (push saline through his port really fast) to try to pop it back into place, but after yet another X-ray (this one much harder than the first), they found that it was still out of place. They gave us the option of either doing a new port, or a broviac. A broviac us basically the same thing as a port, but it doesn't sit under your skin. He will need this to do his bone marrow transplant anyway, so we opted for the broviac, hoping to save a surgery in the future. There is more care with the broviac because you have to change the bandage every 7 days, and flush the line daily, but we figured the benefits outweighed the inconveniences.
Tuesday before surgery, Ethan got a visit from Blake. The bone marrow team wanted Blake to come in for a blood test to see if they are a match. I felt SO bad for Blake. It is hard to bring him in and have him poked and prodded as well. Blake did AMAZING, though! He didn't even cry. the picture above is after his blood test with the teddy bear and wooden car they gave him. he was awesome, and I am counting that as a huge tender mercy! Blake will be the best match for Ethan because he is the only full-blooded sibling. We also have Blake's cord blood saved. Viacord does a program where they save the cord blood of siblings to cancer patients for 5 years. I am so grateful we have this. If they are a match, the cord blood has an easier time grafting because the stem cells are immature, and haven't attached to a person yet. We are praying they are a match, and should find out in about 2 weeks if he is a match.
After fasting from midnight until 6:00, Ethan was finally able to go into surgery. All went well with surgery, and he was able to start chemo using his broviac at 11:00 that night. He has had chemo for the last 3 days now, and is doing pretty good considering all his little body is going through. He has of course been pretty tired, and his chest is sore from the surgery, and his appetite that we have worked 2 years for has gone down the drain, but he has been in good spirits, and he remembers to tell everyone please and thank you. He is such a sweet boy. I am sure if I were in his position, I would be a bit of an ogre, but he has been amazing.
As far as our treatment plan, it looks like we will be here for 3-4 weeks, then we can go home for about a week, and then we will be back up here again. He will do this for 2-3 times, or until he goes into remission, and then he will do the bone marrow transplant which will be a stay of 4-6 weeks without complications. I am so grateful to everyone for the help that has been given and offered. I see no possible way of this working without the help and prayers of so many people. A sincere thank you from the bottom of our hearts!