Monday, September 25, 2017

ITP Awareness: Treatments

Is there one treatment that is usually recommended?

An initial course of prednisone (a corticosteroid) is often given to newly diagnosed patients. Prednisone suppresses the immune system. It is hoped that suppressing the immune system will cause the patient’s platelet count to increase and remain elevated after the patient stops taking prednisone. Sometimes a short course of dexamethasone, another corticosteroid, is used instead of prednisone.

There are 5 main treatments for ITP (of course there are others but these are the 5 main go-tos):
- Steroids
- IVIG: a liquid concentrate of antibodies purified from the plasma (the liquid portion of the blood that doesn’t contain red blood cells) of healthy blood donors.
- WinRho: is also a liquid concentrate of antibodies derived from healthy human plasma. However, this medicine is targeted against the Rh factor* on red blood cells. It is thought that WinRho binds to red blood cells to such an extent that the spleen is fully occupied eliminating red blood cells and does not have much opportunity to remove the antibody-coated platelets.
- Chemotherapy Agents (Rituxan): reduces the number of B cells in the body. B cells are a type of white blood cell that, when activated, multiply and produce antibodies. Since Rituxan reduces the number of B cells, it also reduces the number of cells that produce antibodies, including the antibodies that attack platelets, thereby enabling the platelet count to rise. 
- Spleen Removal: The spleen is a large blood filter which, for many people, removes antibody-coated platelets. Theoretically, if the spleen is removed, the platelets will remain in circulation. However, there are other ways the body removes platelets, so this treatment sometimes fails to have a lasting effect.

Some of the side effects of these are:
Steroids: patients may become more irritable, have stomach upsets, sleep disturbances, increased appetite, weight gain, puffy cheeks, frequent urination, sugar in the urine, loss of bone density, or acne. When the medicine is stopped, most side effects will begin to disappear.

IVIG: Some patients treated with IVIg experience nausea and vomiting, headaches or fever and rarely, aseptic meningitis, abnormal blood clots or kidney failure. Many patients are helped by pretreatment with acetaminophen and Benadryl

WinRho: Temporary side effects include fever, headache, chills, nausea and vomiting, anemia, and rarely, kidney failure. Rare cases of intravascular hemolysis (red cell destruction) has been experienced by a small number of patients.

Rituxan: Side effects of Rituxan were reported in 87% of patients. Ten percent of patients reported very serious adverse effects that included fever, chills, weakness, nausea and headaches. Some hypersensitive patients may get serum sickness. Some rare cases of progressive multifocal leukoencephalophathy due to a specific virus have been reported to the FDA.

Spleen Removal: Short-term complications of splenectomy immediately following surgery may include infection, incisional bleeding, deep vein blood clots, pneumonia, incisional hernia, pancreas inflammation, and pulmonary embolism (blood clot that travels to the lungs). While general anesthesia prevents pain during the surgery, there may be incisional pain for several days after surgery. The spleen filters your blood and produces antibodies to help fight infections. 

This was taken directly from PDSA

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

I WILL Like Them!

I have never been able to really get into classics. I want to. I want to read and fall in love with all of the great classics everyone I know loves. So I try one or two a year. So far I am still not a classic book lover but I am trying. So here the Top 5 classics I want to read (and love).

I am one of the five people who has neither seen or read Gone With The Wind. This is one of my Grandmother's favorite books so I want to read it and love it.

"The story is set in Clayton County, Georgia, and Atlanta during the American Civil War and Reconstruction era. It depicts the struggles of young Scarlett O'Hara, the spoiled daughter of a well-to-do plantation owner, who must use every means at her disposal to claw her way out of the poverty she finds herself in after Sherman's March to the Sea. A historical novel, the story is a Bildungsroman or coming-of-age story, with the title taken from a poem written by Ernest Dowson."

This next book is my cousin's favorite book. I have heard her talk about it and quote it for years.
"Armed with only his wits and his cunning, one man recklessly defies the French revolutionaries and rescues scores of innocent men, women, and children from the deadly guillotine. His friends and foes know him only as the Scarlet Pimpernel. But the ruthless French agent Chauvelin is sworn to discover his identity and to hunt him down."

One of my friends named her son after the main character in this book. I feel that that in itself warrants the need to read this book.

"Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, he leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days. The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it."

The last two books are simply because they sound like books I would really enjoy and they are...

"a startlingly original and haunting novel that creates an imaginary world that is completely
convincing, from the first sentence to the last four words. No one can deny the novel's hold on the imaginations of whole generations, or the power of its admonitions -a power that seems to grow, not lessen, with the passage of time."

"Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage. Are books hidden in his house? The Mechanical Hound of the Fire Department, armed with a lethal hypodermic, escorted by helicopters, is ready to track down those dissidents who defy society to preserve and read books."

    What are some of your favorite classics or classics you want to read? I can always add a few more to my list! Let me know below.

ITP Awareness: 2016 Awareness Video

Did you find my family? We're in there! 

Friday, September 15, 2017

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Warm, Fuzzy, & Colorful!

Can you tell I'm in the mood to crochet all the things? I have been crocheting non-stop for the last week or so. I am loving all the patterns I am finding! What are you pinning this week on Pinterest? Share with me!