Week 14 – Sunday to Tuesday 5th Dec – Kidney function tests

Sunday was a nice quite day with our only visitors being Knox and Cate Heggaton from Tassie.  Knox leases our farm in Tasmania and does a fantastic job keeping the livestock in good health and the irrigators functioning!  He is a long-time friend from the 1980s when working on my Dad’s farm as a Marcus Oldham student.  Cate is gorgeous and runs her own woollen wares shop in Launceston.  She has kindly offered to look after our pet corgi Sparky (and in fact taken the role of surrogate mother from our ex neighbour Jenni Butt – sorry Jen!).   Sparky has taken to the healthy food in Cate’s garden!

Knox and Cate Heggaton


Monday was also a quite day but we managed to catch up with Jason and Caroline Ennels at their Café in Malvern.  These guys are keen golfers and spend as much time as possible on the course.  Caroline is a long-time friend from our university days at Trinity College in Melbourne.

We enjoyed a great lunch at the 8 Days cafe – co-owned by the Ennels.  Photo taken with Jan’s new iphone X!

Tuesday was another day of tests – this time a kidney function test.

The lead consultant on the transplant team, Amit Khot has been concerned that my kidney function is not up to scratch as a result of the Ambisome treatment – a side effect of this drug which has been used to treat my lung infection.  It seems that there is a linkage with all treatments – one will affect another and this might also affect something else.

The tests involved a nuclear medicine tests over a 4.5hr period.  Initially a nuclear isotope was injected into my blood stream and then samples were collected hourly.  The red blood cells separate from the plasma and this is then spun off in a ‘Wells’ machine, with the nuclear sample being counted to see what has been screened by the kidneys and what is still left in the system.

The final test was a Scan of the kidneys after injecting another isotope.  This one lasted for 20 minutes and it is possible to see the concentration of the nuclear particles in the kidneys and the bladder.

The nuclear isotopes collecting in the two two kidneys and bladder are shown quite clearly.

Following these tests we had a meeting with Amit and on his recommendation the Stem Cell Transplant (for bone marrow) will most likely be delayed until early January.

Amit will wait for final test results on Wednesday morning (en route to Altanta, USA for a haematology conference!) but at this stage this is what it is looking like.

So my plans change again! It now looks like the next round of Chemotheraphy will start after Christmas with the transplant on or about January 4th .

In one sense this is slightly disappointing but the positive is it gives me a chance to spend some time with family over Christmas, which I was not expecting.

4 thoughts on “Week 14 – Sunday to Tuesday 5th Dec – Kidney function tests

  1. Hi Geoff and Jan

    It’s a huge web of relationships throughout the body. What an incredible machine we are!

    At least the good side is time with your family at Christmas and you can then settle in for the treatment in January.

    I’m incredibly frustrated at the moment. I’ve been sitting here on hold for the last two hours trying to get on to someone in Telstra to fix my log in to email. I’m ready to pick the phone up and throw it out the window!! It’s logged out and won’t accept my username and password. AAAAAGGGGGGGHHHHHHH!!

    While my frustrations pale in to nothing compared to yours, your team is actually available and helpful in every way. Not so Telstra.


  2. Cheeky Sparky. Turned vego!! Hope kidneys come up with an A+

    Christmas time with all the kids will be a bonus. Love to you both annette s


  3. Hi Geoff
    It must be frustrating to come up with delays but I’m sure you will get there soon.i was thinking that we were both having operations on the same day as I am having a foot op,but not to be.
    Still wishing you and Jan all the best
    Cheers Chris and Cathy
    Ps you did well to get the Ennels off the golf course


  4. Hi Geoff and Jan,
    Disappointing that it’s not all systems go for the transplant, but you need all systems in good order and these drugs do knock crucial organs around! Hope your kidney function improves and you can get off the ambisome.
    Meanwhile, have a lovely family time together with your beaut kids and a great Christmas. We read your blog and think you are both doing a mighty job in the fight.
    Love to all
    Ann and Roger


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