Stem cells collected and what a treat to have some days out of hospital

It’s been a real treat to have a week at home with both girls – albeit punctured with appointments and some nights in hospital. The girls have enjoyed Easter activities, playing in the (sunny) garden and just generally getting time with one another. Eloise continues to recover exceptionally well from all her operations and is now walking around very well, unaided and with only the occasional wobble.

However, the most remarkable improvement Eloise has made recently is her improved language, her increasing smile and her bubbly character occasionally returning.  Life has been pretty chaotic since January and all the hospital appointments, surgeries and treatments often mask the fact that Eloise is a developing and maturing toddler. Eloise is a tough little warrior and has coped with all the treatments with very, very little compliant but has also (understandably) lost some of her zest, bounce and smile in the process. Seeing her smile again, chat a lot more with us and Anna and relax because she is ‘home’ has been hugely encouraging.

On Monday lunch, Eloise got admitted into the Royal Marsden in preparation to have her stem cells collected on Tuesday. Eloise had her operation to insert the line and they collected cells on Tuesday, but unfortunately not enough stem cells were collected and Eloise had to repeat the collection again all day on Wednesday. She was brilliant on both days, sitting still all day, and we are now in a good position to start high dose chemotherapy next week.

Eloise then had an ECHO and ECG tests on Friday to assess her heart (which is in good order) before we met with her Oncologist to discuss the next steps for High Dose Chemo. Eloise will be starting high dose chemotherapy with stem cell rescue later this week (most likely Thursday) – this usually means being an inpatient for 6 weeks but can be much longer (or ideally slightly shorter if her blood counts recover unusually quickly….we would like this!).

The plan is then for Eloise to start focal radiotherapy for 6 weeks, immediately afterwards. No decision has been made on Eloise’s Proton Beam Therapy application but her chemotherapy protocol has been designed around the assumption it will be successful and that Eloise can be transferred as soon as she is well enough to go to Manchester. We are grateful for all the efforts of the team in pushing forward on fast treatment and designing the chemotherapy protocol around Eloise and her situation.

Eloise will have an MRI (under general anaesthetic) and Ophthalmology (eye) appointment on Monday at St George’s, followed by an Audiology appointment on Wednesday before being admitted. So, another full week again.

For those that pray;

  • Please pray for no evidence of tumour re-growth on Monday’s MRI scan – whether or not it has grown is crucial for Eloise’s prognosis (even if her treatment would remain the same)
  • Eloise’s Proton Beam Therapy application being successful
  • For protection over Eloise as she starts High Dose Chemo (HDC) with stem-cell rescue (also known as Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation). We would greatly value prayers for two main risks:
    • Septicemia
    • VOD: Veno-occlusive disease – a serious complication starting with the liver

Thank you for all your continued love, support and prayers.

9 thoughts on “Stem cells collected and what a treat to have some days out of hospital

  1. Bless you for keeping us updated so clearly. I don’t know how most adults would cope with all Eloise is going through your week certainly is very busy. We will continue to pray for your all as you walk this difficult road. It’s lovely to hear and praise the Lord the Eloise’s bubbly character re- emerging and you have been able to enjoy happy family times together

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  2. Thank you so much for the update .
    Praying as you ask , and giving thanks .
    Blessings and love .Penny xx

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  3. Thank you for all that has been happening and we will continue to hold you all, especially Eloise in our prayers. Shirley xx

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  4. So good to hear Eloise has had some fun days at home and her bubbly character shining through! I’m sure that thrills your hearts! Will pray for upcoming chemo and radiation to work well! What an amazing little warrior! May God continue to provide wisdom for those treating her during this difficult time.

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  5. God bless this little soldier. I’m sure that the Lord has many plans fpr Eloise. What a testament to God’s goodness and mercy. May He strengthen all of you in the days to come, xxx

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