Home…and a measles vaccine tested on myeloma patients…

My Dad is finally home from the rehab center. Relief! Joy!

As you can imagine, I have been incredibly busy in these past few weeks (so much to do!), but I’d still like to apologize for having ignored the blog for so long…AND I’d also like to thank those of you who have written me private and public messages of support…much appreciated in this difficult time, let me tell ya!!!

But really, things are going very well. Dad has made a remarkable recovery from the stroke (=it was a lacunar stroke, we were informed), and, as strange as this is going to sound, in my opinion he seems better than before the stroke, which goes to show that all the exercise he did on a daily basis at the rehab center has worked like a charm.

I’m still at my parents’ house, of course, and I will be here for another couple of weeks, just to see my parents through this initial phase. I plan to be back in Florence for Stefano’s birthday…June 7, that is. Because of what happened to my father, Stefano and I weren’t together on our 15th wedding anniversary earlier this month (indeed, I confess I completely forgot about it until now!), but I really want to be with him on his birthday…

Now for the measles vaccine mentioned in my post’s title: about ten days ago I was notified by many blog readers of a possible “cure” for myeloma. So I clicked on and read many of the articles discussing this matter. In a nutshell, two myeloma patients were singled out from a Mayo Clinic Phase I clinical trial testing a genetically modified, high-dose measles virus on patients with myeloma who had been through all the usual treatments and really had no options left.

From what I read, it seems that most patients did not respond to the modified measles treatment. But the news went viral anyway, based on the case of a patient, a woman, who went into complete remission, which is amazing news, of course…or so I thought at first. According to a Cancer Research UK article (see below link), the tumor she’d had on her forehead, which had initially disappeared during treatment, did return at some point and is now being treated with radiotherapy. So I wonder what that means…hmmm…

As for the other patient, also a woman, her myeloma initially responded well to the treatment but then, sadly, came back with a vengeance (that is, it was worse than before), according to the Cancer Research UK article, which I really encourage you to read, mainly because it has a lot of details about the trial, including dosage of the vaccine, etc. AND it is easy to read.

So, what to make of all this? Not much, in my opinion. It’s simply too early, and I don’t feel very excited about it. But, certainly, it’s an intriguing study…

And now for the links:

Here’s the Cancer Research UK article: http://goo.gl/Bufh7s

I chose this Medical News article mainly because, toward the end, it links to another article discussing a study that has found a link between the “aging” gene and myeloma….certainly worth looking into when I have more time: http://goo.gl/KR0sGs

Stefano sent me this article published in one of Italy’s top newspapers, the “Corriere della Sera,” proving that there has also been international interest in the outcome of the Mayo Clinic measles trial (note: the article is, obviously, in Italian!): http://goo.gl/5OCF4M

For those who enjoy/understand medical jargon, here is the link to the actual Mayo Clinic trial proceedings: http://goo.gl/b4QzPW

That’s it for now! Take care, everyone! Ciao! :)