The Numbers and Chemistry of Cancer

It’s now been eight weeks since that Easter Saturday when the bone marrow biopsy confirmed the diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma. Eight weeks of chemotherapy. Eight weeks that have felt like eight years and eight days at the same time.

There is a marker for MM that helps measure effectiveness in treatment and that is the measurement of Kappa Light Chains. Light Chains are complex molecules which clog up the system and at the highest level my marker number had been at 3500. In the past eight weeks that number has bounced back and forth but not really reduced. That speaks to the aggressive hold the cancer had in my system.

But now finally I’ve experienced a significant drop from the 3500 number to just over 2100, which is a drop of 30%. Hooray!!!

So, tonight, Wednesday May 27, Meg and I will be traveling to Stanford to spend the night and tomorrow meet with the Bone Marrow Transplant Team for a qualifying interview. They will be interviewing me for healthy viability (they only perform 300 transplants per year) and we will interview the team for the decision itself. There are some in the discipline who believe the transplant is too dangerous for an uncertain return. They also believe that so many cancer drugs are coming to market that perhaps that’s the best course of treatment.


As an update, we have been blessed by the donations that have been made on our behalf. To date, $3000 has been donated and costs such as the lodging at Stanford have been allayed by the financial support. We appreciate it so much. If someone still cares to help, the website is to use Dan’s Paypal account where He collects his speaking and wedding honoraria.

You may send contributions to

Dan’s Redemption Road

6687 Oakmont Drive

Santa Rosa CA 95409

2 thoughts on “The Numbers and Chemistry of Cancer

  1. Glad to hear numbers are coming down. I have lambda myeloma. My number was 4500 and bounced arounda bit too at first when I was only on Rev/dex. As soon as they added Velcade the number went down from 3700 to 112 after only about 3 or 4 shots. Are you getting Velcade injections? I have opted not to do SCT since my last bone marrow biopsy showed only .2% cancer and I am tolerating the meds well. We’re on the look out for neuropathy from the Velcade, but so far so good. I can still play the violin. It’s a tricky decision this days with the medical community split about SCT. Good luck with your Stanford interview, and I hope to see more reports of improvement. I hope you are also feeling less pain and getting some energy back.

    Kind Regards,
    Peggy (the violinist)

    • Hi Peggy. Yes, Velcade is the injection I’ve taken for about seven weeks. The cancer had advanced aggressively requiring oral Cytoxan for the past three weeks. There are many issues as you know including neuropathy from Velcade and maintenance challenges while on Revlimid.

      Meg and I celebrate your remission!

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