Day -7: Harvesting day! Early in the morning Dr. Fedorenko is already preparing the machines for us at 6:50 am. After 4 days of stem cell stimulation injections, the harvesting of the stem cells will start early in the morning: 2 million stem cells per kg body weight are needed. So for my current weight of 58 kg, that means I need 116 million stem cells! All the stem cells that have ‘bursted’ out of my bone tissue into the bloodstream in the past few days (ouch) are now filtered from my blood via this blood dialysis machine via the neck line that was inserted yesterday.
This process takes 5 or 6 hours and is not pleasant and even painful. Occasionally it seems as if the device is going to spin like a washing machine and the feeling of spinning the stem cells from my body comes closest to my back pains when I was in labour… and this takes 6 hours. Anyway, we need to do what must be done. Don’t worry too much, listen some music and try to catch some sleep. Hopefully enough stem cells have been harvested at the end of the day so that no second day is needed tomorrow. To be continued!
Anyways, it is very nice that, although we cannot leave the bed today, the patients still keep in touch with each other and send each other messages. And last but not least, Simon is keeping me company in my room. 🙂
Click on the images to open the gallery including explanations: