To Read Tami's Story from the Beginning

Just CLICK HERE. Her blog begins on March 12, 2009 with a post titled "Tami's Myelodysplasia Diagnosis." Then at the bottom of each post, click on the words "Newer Post" located just below the comments section on each page.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Photos of Tami's Actual Stem Cell Transplant

View the previous post below to see all of the details about Tam's Transplant.

This little bag of stem cells can mean the difference between life and death for those in need.

Thank you so much to Tami's anonymous donor whoever and wherever you are. I've been sitting here staring at this photo and thinking how lucky Tami is that you joined the registry, how lucky our whole family is.

I mean really, how do you properly thank someone for giving someone you love a chance to have their future back? There simply aren't words to convey how I feel tonight knowing that Tami, her kids and the rest of us who love her have received such an amazing gift from you.

And now the waiting begins. Will Tami's body accept or reject these donor cells? It will take several weeks to find out. Please keep Tami in your thoughts and prayers and continue to send positive energy in a north-westerly direction aimed at Seattle.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Tami's Stem Cell Transplant is Today! Day "0"

So, today Tami will receive her stem cell transplant at 9:30 A.M.. The day of transplant is often regarded as day zero with each subsequent day post transplant being referred to as +1, +2, +3, etc.

Her doctors have spent the last week preparing her for this moment. Her preparations included both 6 rounds of chemo and various antibiotics to help prevent infection now that Tami's own immune system was destroyed by the chemo.

The Be The Match website describes the actual transplant this way:
"The infusion process takes about one hour, sometimes longer, depending on the volume of cells. The infusion usually does not hurt. A nurse will watch your blood pressure and pulse and watch for any reactions while you are getting your new cells. Some people have mild side effects like those of blood transfusions. These side effects do not last long. You will be awake to receive the donated cells, although you may be mildly sedated.

The donated cells "know" where they belong in the body. They move through your bloodstream to settle in your bone marrow. This is where the donated cells will begin to grow and produce new red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. This is called engraftment."
Your prayers and good thoughts are appreciated as the days following a transplant are often the most painful and grueling for some patients. Thank you so much for all of your support to date, it's very much appreciated.

___________ EDITED TO ADD at 9:27 A.M. ___________

A Delay :( The stem cells have not arrived in Seattle. They are now scheduled to land at 9:45 A.M. with the transplant to take place at noon. Tami's donor lives in the U.S. but not in Seattle so his stem cells are being flown in to her.

___________ EDITED TO ADD at 3:05 P.M. ___________

The transplant began at 12:32 P.M. and will run for several hours until around 5:30 P.M.. Tami was a little anxious and feeling a little nauseaous but I'm told she is hanging in there. Her nurse said she should sleep through most of it, they gave her a good dose of benadryl. Everything is going well.

___________ EDITED TO ADD at 5:43 P.M. ___________

Tami is just about done with the transplant. She ran into some problems which consisted of fever and rapid heartbeat. Both are under control now but she's not feeling very good at the moment :(

Complications like this are to be expected and as unpleasant as they are, are not cause for concern at this point in time.

___________ EDITED TO ADD at 6:50 P.M. ___________

I am happy to report that Tami's transplant is done and everything seems ok at the moment.

They will keep checking her vitals until 8:00 to watch for any problems.

___________ EDITED TO ADD at 9:20 P.M. ___________

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Monday, June 29, 2009

Bone Marrow Donation Video on "What's Up Wit' That?"

A couple of months ago some good luck landed in my lap. I was given the opportunity to come be a guest on Andrew Willyoung's public access tv show on KMVT "What's Up Wit' That?"

I asked if I could bring some friends along and the producer of the show said absolutely! So I called the AADP and Team Matthew. As it turned out the Carol Gillespie, Executive Director of the AADP, and James Nguyen who is part of the team that is heading the Team Matthew donor drive effort were both able to join me for the taping.

The episode is a good crash course in why marrow donation is needed and what the donation process entails.

It was a great taping and host Andrew implored his viewers numerous times to take action and get registered.

The episode is approximately 30 minutes long and was filmed in Mountain View, CA in April.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE EPISODE on the Fired Up Productions website.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Chemotherapy Day #6 - Final Round

I am so happy to be able to report that Tami is done with her six rounds of chemo.

Today she felt just a tiny bit nauseous but nothing too bad. The Doctors have warned that this could still change but we think the anti-nausea medicine has done it's job well so far as the side effects could have been worse already.

Tonight Tami had beef tenderloin tips with sauteed sweet onions, jasmine rice and broccoli for dinner. Yum.

Tomorrow is a day of rest for Tami. We still don't know what time her actual stem cell transplant will be on Tuesday. It all depends on when the stem cells arrive into town. If I find out tomorrow I'll let you know.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Chemotherapy Day #5

Today Tami didn't feel so good. The nausea is setting in but still not too badly. Hopefully the anti-nausea meds will continue to do their job.

We are expecting that Tami will now begin to feel less well as her marrow is no longer producing new blood cells or platelets. The lack of red blood cells in particular will cause her to feel exhausted as red blood cells are the ones that oxygenate your body and vital organs.

Tami will now need to receive blood and platelet transfusions on a more regular basis until her new donated marrow stem cells are transplanted and the cells engraft and she is able to produce her own new blood.

Only one round of chemo left!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Chemotherapy Day #4

Well today was the first day that Tami felt "blah" after her chemo. Nausea is to be expected but the doctors have been giving her medications that will hopefully prevent or lessen that particular side effect from the 6 rounds of Chemo she will be receiving.

Despite feeling not so great she did still eat a meal of salmon, broccoli and rice today.

Only two more days of chemo left but the doctors said that now is when some of the worse side effects may present themselves :(

Hoping that won't be the case.

Chemotherapy Day #3

I am happy to report that Tami's third chemo session went as well as the first two: Uneventfully.

She did receive a blood transfusion which took the better part of the day.

I also found out that Tami is participating in a study by being a part of a Cytoxan researh group. Cytoxan is one of the chemo meds being used to remove her sick marrow. Fred Hutchinson is one of the top Cancer Research Centers in the world so it's no surprise that there are research groups and clinical tries going on there at all times. Because of the patients who are willing to participate in studies now, medicine will advance a step further for patients yet to be diagnosed in the future so they can receive even better options in their treatment.

The Cytoxan may expedite her recovery process allowing her to be released from the hospital sooner as opposed to later following her transplant.

Tami would also like to thank everyone for the many messages she's received this week. Though she's not up to thanking everyone in person she does truly appreciate hearing from all of you.

If you would like to send Tami a message please CLICK HERE

Thanks so much for checking in.

Dr. Anh Nguyen Reiss Day

To encourage their local community members to participate in the National Marrow Donor Program, Harris County Texas has declared today ( June 26, 2009) Dr. Anh Reiss Day! Anh, like Tami, was also diagnosed with Myelodysplasia in 2009. You can learn more about Anh and her drive efforts at

Apparently it takes a County Judge, 4 commissioners and a Deputy County Clerk to have your Country name a day after you.

It is a symbolic gesture of a Marrow Donor Drive being held today at the:

The Criminal Justice Center
1201 Franklin, 2nd floor
11:00 am - 2:00 pm

If you live in Harris County and aren't in the Registry please attend. If you know someone who lives in Harris County Texas please forward the link to this blog post to them and ask them to help spread the word to everyone else they know there this morning.

We really appreciate the help!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Chemotherapy Day #2

Day 2 of Tami's chemo went even more smoothly then the first with no reaction at all to the medication.

Now that her chemo has begun and she's an in-patient at the hospital Tami's blood is checked every 2 hours. Tomorrow she will receive a blood transfusion as her count was low today. This is to be expected as the chemo medication causes lowering of her blood counts.

One of the question I am often asked is "Will Tami lose her hair?" The answer is yes and in actuality she has been losing some hair recently due to her medications but with the start of chemo she is losing more and will soon have little to no hair left.

On the up side she can eat anything she wants and her apatite has continued to be good. Today she had grilled chicken and artichokes for lunch. For dinner she was going to have take-out tempura.

The catheter site is a little sore and will take a few more days to heal.

Thanks for checking in and for the many messages yesterday.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Chemotherapy Day #1

Today Tami had her first round of chemo. The infusion lasted about an hour. About 3/4 of the way through Tami felt flushed so they gave her Benadryl in case she was having some type of allergic reaction. Thankfully this was her only negative reaction so far.

Her apatite was good today and she took a couple of short walks around the hospital where she is now an admitted in-patient.

She has had a few family members visit her in the past two days but in the upcoming weeks she will have fewer visitors due to having less energy and she will need to be protected from opportunistic infections as her white blood count will drop to zero and she will once again be neutropenic once the chemo has done its job. Neutropenia is when the white blood count is so low that even the most common germs or infections can become fatal as the immune system is compromised.

I did learn that her six rounds of chemo will be administered over 6 days.

I have not received confirmation that her donor is beginning his injection process to overstimulate his marrow so that it will release his stem cells for the PBSC harvest. But to meet the transplant date next week I believe he has to have begun his treatments.

I will post an update tomorrow to let you know how her second day goes.

Thank you for checking in.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Another Success Story

I love to write about the success stories and this sure is one of them. Jasmina Anema, 6 years old, was diagnosed with leukemia and needed a stem cell transplant. She was extremely lucky to find a donor within five months and it appears her body is accepting the stem cells with no negative reactions!! Singer, Rihanna has followed Jasmina's story closely and said that luckily miracles do happen. The New York Daily News featured Jasmina's story.  There is also an awesome picture of Jasmina with Rihanna!

You can read Jasmina's entire story here.  She has been such a courageous and wonderful role model.  We wish her the absolute best with her stem cell transplant.  She will need rest and will have to be indoors for next six months but then her normal life can resume!  

Posted by Wendy. Learn more about her in this blog post

Tami will Receive Her Hickman Catheter Today

While I was never able to confirm at what point the donor passed his health screening, it has happened! Things are moving forward today in a big way. In just a few hours Tami will undergo the procedure to receive her Hickman Catheter, also known as a Central Line.

• The catheter is basically a tube implanted into the jugular vein and is used to administer treatments into a patient so that needles are not needed for each injection. It can also be used to draw blood.

• One end is implanted into the jugular vein near the heart.

• The other end is a single tube that comes out through an incision in the chest wall and at the end has several IV ports through which various medicines can be administered to patients in small doses or larger drip bags.

• Both Chemo and the Stem Cell Transplant will take place through these ports. This spares patients having to have needles stuck in them each time they receive a medicine or treatment.

• Even after the transplant has taken place the catheter may be left in for several weeks while her post operative care continues.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) Tami will begin her 6 rounds of chemotherapy to eliminate her sick bone marrow. This will give the new donor stem cells, once she receives them, the ability to take over blood production (red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets) in her body.

A week from tomorrow on Tuesday the 30th Tami is scheduled to receive her stem cell transplant!

Please keep her in your prayers this week. It is quite common for patients to experience a lot of uncomfortable side effects from the chemo, some of which are completely debilitating. Hopefully Tami will be spared the worst of these.

P.S. If you are a patient or donor program and would like to use this illustration on your own website or blog please feel free to do so. You can copy and paste or drag and drop the image to your own desktop. If you need me to email you a copy just let me know by using the contact form on Tami's website.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Today is the Last Day of the Marrowthon: Register to be a Marrow Donor For Free!

Today is the last day of the 2009 "Be The Match" Marrowthon. If you haven't joined the National Marrow Donor Program today is a great day to join for FREE! If you are in the registry please send out this link to everyone you know and ask them to join today.
EVERYONE who orders a test kit today joins for FREE!
Normally for Caucasians there is a charge that ranges from $25 to $52. But today if  you order a home test kit online you will be able to register at no charge. (Learn more about why by CLICKING HERE)
Just CLICK HERE to go to the Be The Match website and fill in the online registration form. The test kit, containing 4 cotton swabs that you swab your mouth with will be sent to your home. It couldn't be easier to join.
Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about donating your marrow:
Q) Don't most people find a marrow donor within their own family? 
A) No only 30% of people find a match within their own family. The rest find matches from strangers.
Q) Isn't donating bone marrow really painful?
A)Most accounts are that usually the pain isn't too severe. Most donors say the post operative pain is similar to a bruised area. If you donate your bone marrow you will be given a general or  local anesthesia during the harvesting process. It requires no hospitalization and doesn't take long.
Q) Is the marrow taken from my spine?
A) No, the marrow is taken from the upper portion of your hip bones.
Q) Is the marrow always taken from the bone itself?
A) Actually no. 70% of the time donations are now made by a process called Peripheral Blood Stem Cell (PBSC) where the donor receives a medication that helps their bone marrow to over produce stem cells. The excess stem cells are released into the blood stream and are harvested through a process similar to blood donation. The blood is drawn from one arm, the stem cells are harvested in a machine and the rest of the blood is sent back to the donor into their other arm.
Q) Why do I need to join the registry?
A) Only 30% of patients in need will find a marrow match in time. 
Q) Why does ethnicity matter?
A) Every patient's best chance of finding a match is within their own ethnic group. Currently 80% of Caucasians will find a marrow match but less then 30% of ethnic minorities will find their match in time.
Q) If I join who can I help?
A)  You might be the match for any one of the 6000 patients in the United States currently seeking a life saving marrow match. You could also be a donor to a patient anywhere in the world. The registries make their registrants available to donor programs internationally. In fact roughly 50% of the matches made are international matches where the patient and donor live in different countries.
Q) Can I change my mind?
A) Yes, you can change your mind at any time. However once a patient has begun chemo prior to the transplant if you change your mind after their own bone marrow is destroyed by the chemo, they will most likely not survive.
Q) If I donate do I get to meet the patient who receives my stem cells or marrow?
A) It depends on where the patient lives. If they live in the U.S. meeting is a possibility a year after the transplant has taken place. If they live in another country it may not be possible to ever meet them.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Friday, June 19, 2009

How is Tami Feeling

Today we learned some news regarding Tami and her potential donor. We've received word that the potential donor has been undergoing his pre-transplant health evaluation since the beginning of June. Her doctors have not received word yet if he has passed or if the testing is ongoing. Hopefully we will find out one way or the other soon. 

Assuming the donor is healthy enough to make the donation, Tami will receive her Hickman Catheter on Monday with her chemotherapy to begin on Tuesday and the transplant to follow a week later on Tuesday, June 30th. A Hickman Catheter is a type of central line that is defined as follows:

Getting a central line

You will get many drugs before and after your transplant. To make it easier to get drugs into your bloodstream, doctors use a central line. A central line is a tube that is surgically inserted into a large vein in the chest, just above the heart. There are many types of central lines and they may be referred to by different names. These include central venous catheter, Hickman catheter, Broviac catheter and others.

You will have your central line put in before you start your pre-transplant treatment (preparative regimen). You may have it put in when you enter the hospital or a few days or weeks before then.

The outside end of the central line may have two or three ports. IV tubes can be connected to these ports so that bags of drugs or blood products can be infused into a vein. With a central line you will not need to have a needle stick each time you get IV drugs. When you receive your transplant of bone marrow or cord blood cells, they will be infused through your central line as well. The central line may also be used to draw blood from the vein for blood tests.

Your medical team will use the central line often while you are in the hospital. You will probably still have the central line for a time after you leave the hospital. In the hospital, your medical team will keep the central line clean to try to prevent infections. You or your caregiver will continue to clean the central line if you still have it when you return home.

We will continue to update Tami's progress as well as that of her potential donor. It seems that everything is on the right track for now!! We hope things continue to go so smoothly.

Posted by Wendy. Learn more about her in this blog post

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Another patient in need gets great news!!

Back on May 21, 2009, we told you the story of Nick Glasgow. As you will recall, Nick was searching for a bone marrow match. Unfortunately, Nick's doctors told him he had a zero percent chance of finding a donor. Well, it seems Nick has had a miracle!

We recently received an update on Nick's progress and we were happy to learn it was excellent news! Like Tami, Nick has found two matches!! This is a message from Nick's mom.

We learned yesterday afternoon that Stanford Cancer Center has found two donor matches for Nick out of the thirteen potential matches that had been developed by the national registry. Human leukocytes antigen (HLA) typing is used to match patients and donors for transplants. The immune system uses these antigens (markers) to recognize which cells belong in your body and which do not. Stanford was searching for aset often markers for the best match. Each of the two donor matches that were discovered, match tenout often criterion markers. Further evaluation needs to occur on the two donors by Stanford before a final selection can be made. Moreover, up until the actual transplant event,the national registry will continue to search for other possible donors that might make an even better match. 

In any event it looks like Nick is going to get his chance at a transplant procedure which is heartening indeed for all of us. Nick and his family are so very grateful to all those people behind the scenes at EMC, as well as the other large companies that joined in, The Asian-American Donor Program, the Be The Match Donor Program, all the media involved, and the Stanford/Kaiser medical teams that have helped bring about this hopeful development. We are equally thankful for all of the outpouring of personal support by individuals all over this land and around the globe for their good wishes, prayers, support, and for all the donor volunteers who have come forward this past month.

Five weeks ago, we received the devastating news that there was 0% chance of finding a donor. Due to all of the overwhelming support and response to our call to action, not one, but TWO 10 out of 10 matching markers have been found and secured. We have not been told who these angels are due to confidentiality reasons, but we are so grateful for them! Both donors will be prepped, as well as Nick, for a transplant, which should take place within 30 days. Nick still has a long road ahead of him, so we ask that you continue to keep him, as well as both donors, in your thoughts and prayers for a successful transplant. We ask you to continue to spread the word for the need for donors, as Stanford will continue to search for even more perfect matches, until the actual transplant day. Also, we never want any family to experience the hopelessness of not being able to find a donor match. The harsh reality is that there are thousands of people just like Nick waiting for a donor match to be found. Time is ticking away and they need your help too. Please continue to spread the word that every person ‘in good health’ should be tested and enlisted into the registry. Time is of the essence! This is Nick’s wish, and ours, that every person should have a fighting chance!

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts and God Bless!

You can follow Nick's progress through his Facebook group. We will also continue to update his status.  

We could not be happier for Nick!!! This is such awesome news!

Posted by Wendy. Learn more about her in this blog post

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Mario Lopez on Extra features Krissy Kobata

Last night I was watching EXTRA and all of a sudden host Mario Lopez starts talking about Krissy Kobata and Be The Match, the National Marrow Donor Program. As always I had my camera nearby and grabbed a few screen shots.

26 year old Krissy Kobata also suffers from Myelodysplasia, just like Tami. However where Tami has found 2 marrow matches within 3 months of her diagnosis Krissy has been looking for a match for over a year and has not found a single one. As she said on EXTRA at some point her marrow will either stop working altogether or she may become one of the even less fortunate 30% for whom the disease will progress to become Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

Krissy needs to find a marrow match. Could you be the one? Right now is a great time to join the registry as the cost to have your tissue typed is FREE due to the Marrowthon that runs through June 22, 2009 or until funding runs out to register 46,000 new donors. You can order a FREE home test kit by Clicking Here to go to the Be The Match website.

Here host Mario Lopez perfectly illustrates what the home test kit looks like as he shows his tv audience that it only takes a swab to join the Registry. Thanks to Mario, EXRTRA and NBC for helping to spread the word about the Krissy and the donor program. We need all of the help we can get!

CLICK HERE to view the video clip on EXTRA online.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How Tami is Feeling

We have the latest news from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Hospital. The last two bone marrow biopsies Tami had confirmed the diagnosis of Myelodysplasia. Obviously, this means Tami will need a donation. We are so thankful that she has found a match. Now we have to pray the donor is able and willing.

All of Tami's pre-transplant health testing is now complete. The remainder of this week she has appointments scheduled to receive back the results of all of the tests she's undergone since arriving at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Hospital.

As of right now, Tami is scheduled to undergo 6 rounds of chemotherapy beginning June 23rd. If everything with the chemotherapy goes ok, her transplant is planned to begin the 30th of June.

We are still waiting to find out if her potential donor has begun his health screening tests. It is sort of frustrating not knowing about the potential donor, but I understand why they are protected.

Tami has been seeing her kids via webcam which is helping them to deal with her absence. It must be very hard to have your mom going through something so serious. It's almost too much for young kids to process.

Posted by Wendy. Learn more about her in this blog post

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Doctor who needs transplant plays the waiting game

A new news article about Dr. Anh Reiss who, like Tami, also suffers from Myelodysplasia. Today the Houston Chronicle did a story featuring Doctor Reiss and shared information about the Marrowthon. Anh needs more people of Vietnamese descent to join the Marrow Registry if she is going to find a match in time.

Houston Chronicle Article: Doctor who needs transplant plays the waiting game

You can learn more about Anh and how to help at:

The Team Anh website and at her Facebook Group

The Marrowthon runs from June 8th-22nd and testing is FREE to all who order a home test kit during this time period. After the Marrowthon tissue typing for Caucasians will return to $25-$52 per person.

Photo above by: Michael Paulsen Chronicle

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

How Tami is Feeling

We have some new updates on Tami from Seattle where she is preparing for her possible transplant! Tami has undergone tests almost every day that she has been in Seattle. The doctors need to make sure she is well enough to undergo the procedure. Luckily, Tami's last test will be this week.

If the donor also passes all his health screening tests, Tami will begin chemotherapy on June 23rd. The chemotherapy will prepare Tami's body to receive the donation.

Unfortunately, some of Tami's new medications are making her not feel well. Hopefully, the doctors will be able to help but the medications the doctors give her are necessary.

Yesterday, Tami had a Fatburger for lunch. I know no matter how bad I feel, a burger always makes things not so bad.:)

Tami has had several visitors since relocating to Seattle and other family members arrived a few days ago to be with her while she undergoes her testing, chemotherapy, and recovery. I know having her family around her must be comforting. I'm sure it is a scary time for Tami, but also a relief that a donor has been found and all the testing is in preparation of the donation.

Posted by Wendy. Learn more about her in this blog post

What is PBSC donation?

70% of the time donors are asked to give stem cells through their blood using a method called Peripheral Blood Stem Cell donation or PBSC for short. To increase the number of blood-forming cells in the bloodstream, donors receive daily injections of a drug called filgrastim for five days before the collection.

While lying in bed with your arms at your sides your blood is then removed through a sterile needle in one arm and passed through a machine that separates out the blood-forming cells. This process is similar to donating plasma. The remaining blood is returned to you. It will probably take at least two harvesting sessions, with each lasting several hours to harvest the required number of stem cells. You can even watch tv or a movie while the harvest takes place.

Possible side effects include: Headache or bone or muscle aches for several days before collection, a side effect of the medicine used to overstimulate the donors bone marrow production. These effects disappear shortly after collection. For more details and risk factors please CLICK HERE.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Friday, June 12, 2009

How Tami is Feeling

I'm going to give a call up to Seattle today to see how Tami is doing.

I do know that she's had some fun visits with family and friends since arriving at The Hutch. 

I do know that her testing has begun. A bone marrow biopsy was taken last week. I don't know how long we have to wait for the results. 

I do know other blood work has been done. I don't know the results.

I have to apologize for not being right up to date at the moment but the past couple of days I've been in mourning for a friend and Levi, a very sick pup that I and a team of friends helped to save a year and a half ago.

I'll try to post later today. Until then please keep telling everyone you know they can join the marrow registry for free until June 22nd. The Be The Match Marrowthon is underway!

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Monday, June 8, 2009

Everyone Registers for Free Online during the Bone Marrowthon June 8th-22nd

The Marrowthon is JUNE 8-22, 2009
The $52 testing fee is waived and
Please tell EVERYONE you know.

Go to When prompted use Promo Code:

In 2008, Jon was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, and has been undergoing chemotherapy for 7 months. HIs best hope for a cure and a future with his wife and daughters is a stem cell transplant. Please help us find a match for Jon and the 6000 other Americans in need.

Jon and His Family

Please tell everyone you know. Copy and paste this message into an email along with the promo code or send the link to this page to everyone you know. We really need your help to spread the word.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

The Pre-transplant Testing has Begun!

Tami has begun her pre-transplant testing! The testing will take approximately 2 weeks. Then the potential donor will go through an extensive health screening to make sure he is healthy enough to be eligible to donate his stem cells. There is a 50% chance that the donor may be deemed ineligible to donate or may change his mind. On the truly incredible and miraculous front... A second 10 out of 10 marker match donor has been located for Tami. Her odds of recovery are getting better and better.

Once a donor has been deemed eligible to donate to her, there are still some tough obstacles Tami will have to overcome. She must endure several rounds of chemo before being able to receive a transplant. This is of course a debilitating process followed by a long recovery of several months.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Update on Tami

Tami is now at the cancer treatment hospital. She was to be admitted today as an outpatient. Yesterday upon her arrival she was surprised to find that her personal welcoming committee had already decorated her new place for her with photos of her family and some other personal touches.

Her kids are home with plenty of family there to help ease how much they will be missing their mom. I wish that the treatment hospital were closer so that they could see her each night. Hopefully the video camera has been set up so that they can "see" her already.

Hopefully I will  have more detailed information for you tomorrow :)

Thanks so much for checking in!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

A Little Boy Needs Your Prayers

As you know, we are always trying to help other patients in need.  Right now a little boy by the name of Grant is in need of prayers.

Grant is shown here on the left.  He is an adorable, almost 3 year old toddler, that was very recently diagnosed with Leukemia (specifically Phillidelphia Chromosome Positve Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia or "ALL").  Grant's mom noticed his tummy was very bloated and hard and decided to to take him to the ER when she had a bad feeling about her son.  Right now Grant is scheduled to have chemotherapy for the next three years and four months to keep the cancer at bay.  For the first year of chemotherapy Grant will have to remain somewhat isolated but after that he should be able to do all things other kids can.

You can read Grant's entire story on his website.  Right now his family is just asking for your prayers for Grant.  I will be thinking of Grant everyday and praying for his remission. 

Posted by Wendy. Learn more about her in this blog post

How Tami is Feeling

Well things are finally about to start moving forward for Tami. This week she will be relocating to begin her pre-transplant health screening. While this will be tough on her kids to not have her home, the great thing is that web cams now exist and will allow them to see and talk to their mom each day via the internet. We're also extremely thankful that Tami has a huge support base and between her family and friends there will be no shortage of help for her family while she is at the hospital. We really appreciate how this is something to be grateful for as not everyone is so fortunate.

Tami's counts have continued to rise the past week and her white blood cell count is almost back to normal. Her red blood cell count and platelet counts are still low though. Unfortunately even with her counts improving her overall energy level is still low so she hasn't had a lot of strength and continues to tire easily.

Big news on one of the PSA videos we're creating. Filming has begun on our "Smile, Swab and Spread the Word" video and I spent a day last week with Savadelis Films shooting several cameos including one with Congressman Mike Honda. We also filmed numerous cameos around Downtown Campbell. A special thanks to Chuck and Jewel Savadelis for volunteering their time, talent and efforts to this project for us.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)

Alltop Blog Directory

Alltop, all the top stories
If you're ever looking for blogs about any topic Alltop is a great blog directory that's easy to use and full of great information.

I had submitted Tami's blog to the blog directory Alltop. We were accepted and are now listed there in the "Cancer" category. Hopefully others newly diagnosed with Myelodsyplasia or anyone who needs to look for a bone marrow donor will find this blog useful in figuring out how to go about recruiting new members to join the National Marrow Donor Program.

If you're interested in any topic you can go and peruse their ever growing list of categories to find blogs that are interesting.

Just CLICK HERE to visit Alltop.

Posted by Stacie (Tami's cousin)