Yesterday Jemma began her final phase of intensive chemotherapy. Phase 2B began with an overnight stay in the hospital followed by a lumbar puncture in the morning. She has to take Thioguanine pills at home throughout the phase and visit the hospital four days per week to receive Alexan shots through her catheter. If all goes well the phase will only last two weeks.
Extracting blood from Jemma's catheter continues to be a problem. Although it hasn't been confirmed, the nurses and doctors believe that the opening of her catheter lies inside her body next to the wall of a vein. Think of trying to drink through a straw when the end is plugged, because it is close to fruit or ice in the glass. Air or water goes into the drink through the straw, but getting liquid out is a problem.
Yesterday when it happened Jemma was very cooperative changing her body position while they tried to take blood. (She didn't want another finger prick.) Unfortunately only a little blood came out which was not enough for the blood test. Instead of giving her the blood thinning medicine, she was given an iv drip. Thirty minutes later the blood came out.