Deirdre Sanda hadn’t been feeling well for several months before she was diagnosed with Myeloma – cancer of the white blood cells. As a child minder she remembers having a constant stabbing pain in her side as if she had broken a rib. She went for physio thinking it was due to muscle strain and continued for a time to experience extreme tiredness which she presumed to be a common side effect of getting older.
She pulled her neck out at work one day while lifting a child and the pain was so bad that she physically cried with the intensity. She went straight to see a chiropractor who worked on her neck and when she got home she felt that her ‘blood was on fire’. She couldn’t sleep and went down to her sitting room and knelt on the floor and placed her head on the couch to get relief. She fell asleep like this and when she woke up the bottom half or her body was completely swollen.
She went to hospital and her bloods showed she was anaemic and that there was something going on. She was admitted to hospital and a bone marrow biopsy was taken which confirmed that she had Myeloma, a cancer more often seen is more elderly patients.
She began treatment for a stem cell transplant which first involves harvesting stem cells. She received chemotherapy and remained in isolation for a mother before the harvested cells were reintroduced to try and promote the growth of new cancer free cells.
This treatment resulted in a partial remission of 20 months for Deirdre and she is now attending Beaumont Hospital’s CKB Unit two days a week for an intravenous drug treatment. She has been on this treatment for the last five months is feeling well at the moment. Her treatment is ongoing.
Honour Your Heroes Award
Deirdre thanked staff nurse, Nicola Mahon for an Honour Your Heroes Award for the support and encouragement she has provided her throughout her battle with cancer.