Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 0...finally!! and creamed corn??

Finally!  Around 11:00 this morning Reid began receiving his stem cells back.   There were three bags that had to be infused and that's the first bag hanging all the way to the right in this picture.  It took a little over an hour and initially he was sick, but the nurse gave him something for nausea and then he pretty much slept through the whole thing and the rest of the day.  They've been giving him Benadryl anyway because he's had a reaction to one of the chemo drugs and has broken out in a rash.

The nurse stayed with him the entire time.  A nursing student observed.  Needless to say, Reid did not feel like posing for a picture, so you won't be seeing him today.

The whole thing was very interesting.  The stem cells arrived from the lab frozen in a thing that kind of looked like a cooler inside this white box.  Here he is getting ready to remove one of the bags.  (I'm sorry...I didn't get his name, but he was very nice about explaining everything to me and answering my 1001 questions.)

He thawed the bags as the stem cells were needed.  Here's one of the frozen bags sitting on the counter.  It came in the flat metal box that you can see in the picture and I assume it was to protect the bag from being damaged.  I understood him to say that they're hung by number inside a cryo...something, but we'll just call it a fancy refrigerator here.  Sorry, I'm no scientist.

He placed the bag of frozen stem cells inside what looked like a large Zip Lock bag and then placed them in water to thaw.  I think he told me the water was body temperature, but would drop a few degrees while he turned the bag around and the stem cells thawed.  It probably only took five minutes or less to thaw each bag.

With the third bag he had to take a couple of samples of the thawed stem cells so they could determine how many died during the freezing process.  It's normal for some to die off and I guess they want to have a pretty good idea of exactly how many good cells were infused.

And that was it.  The whole thing was finished in a little over an hour.

Then the entire room smelled like creamed corn.  Even though we were wearing masks we could still smell it.  The preservative that's added to the stem cells causes a smell like creamed corn that Reid's body puts out through his skin.  We were told ahead of time to expect it, and they weren't kidding.

Now it's in God's hands.

And while all of this was going on the nurse came into the room and said, "He's gotten a bunch of cards today," and handed me a stack of envelopes.  Thanks to Jenny over at Jenny Matlock..."off on my tangent" people are sending him cards after she wrote about him on her blog.  He'll have mail to open when he's feeling a little better tomorrow.  Thanks to Jenny and everyone else who read her blog post and responded.

All the caring, concern, and prayers are greatly appreciated.


  1. Praise the Lord Betty! I'm glad that everything is going to plan with the doctors. Looks like they have the entire process down to a great science. I'm sure you'll never look at creamed corn the same! I know I won't!

    Hugs and Prayers!

  2. I'm so glad this process went well and one more step to healing. Perfect healing.... complete healing.

    Creamed corn..... isn't that something, sure beats smelling a medicinal smell.

    Continued prayers from me.

  3. Thanks so much for keeping us posted on how Reid is doing. When he is all better we'll have to change our photos of him to a healthy Reid. He remains in my prayers and you all do too. God is good.

  4. Oh Betty! Such promise! Such a hopeful post! Such making us all, forever, able to associate creamed corn with your beloved son!

    I am still giggling over the corn smell...thank heavens they didn't make him smell like chocolate or you wouldn't have been able to concentrate at all!

    Sending my prayers along today as I do every day.

    I'm glad cards are coming in! I can remember being laid up and when my husband would bring the mail in and there was a card it always lifted my spirits.

    Hugs and hope and healing for all of you.

  5. So glad to hear that the deed is done at last. I wonder what will happen next and all the best wishes, may all go well.

  6. It's amazing. All the best to you and Reid. xx

  7. Oh my gosh -what a process that is. God gives men and women such brains to do all these fantastic miracles.

    Cream corn huh?

    What a brave family you all are.

    And Jenny is a good friend.

    Love, sandie


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