Saturday, March 20, 2010
Addison has started her next step in her treatment plan. Since the steroid she had been on is only helping to heal her esophagus and not her stomach or colon her Doctors decided we needed to go to the next step in her treatment. This step is the first of three options. This is the easiest and we are hopeful it will work. She is now on a new medicine along with all the other medicine that she already takes. This new medicine is a chemotherapy drug that has also been shown to work on diseases in the GI tract. It is called 6-Mecaptopurine, or 6 MP for short. The medicine bottle actually says: Hazardous drugs require thorough hand washing after handling. Pregnant women are not even suppose to handle or breath in the dust from this medicine. It also has some very serious side effects. Addison so far has been blessed to still feel pretty good while taking it. We hope and pray that will continue. This is how I understand that it works. Normal cells stop dividing when they come in contact with like cells. Cancerous cells continue to divide rapidly not being able to stop dividing when they are suppose to. This medicine belongs to a class know as antimetabolites. Antimetabolites are very similar to normal substances found in the cells. When the cells incorporate these substances into the cellular metabolism, they are unable to divide. I guess this medicine works on the Eosinophil cells like it would the cancerous cells. Eosinophils are white blood cells that are one of the immune system components, along with mast cells, they also control mechanisms associated with allergy and asthma. Eosinophillic Esophagitus and Colitis are allergy related. It is the allergens in foods that react with and cause the white blood cells to release toxins that attack the body. It will take about 3 months before this medicine will start to really effect the EE. After that time the Dr.'s will then re scope everything and do biopsies and determine how successful this medicine has been. If for some reason this medicine does not positively effect Addison's EE throughout her body the next step would then be Intravenous feeds. The Doctors are still somewhat stumped as to why the special formula has not helped her stomach and colon to heal. By not eating ANY food her esophagus looked great and there were hardly any eosinophils there. We just have to get the rest of her body healed. Her Dr. never did tell me what the 3rd step would be. I guess he was very hopeful that the first 2 steps should work.