Following Maggie’s adenovirus infection, we started tapering her off cyclosporine a bit earlier than the usual schedule. So, yesterday, I’m happy to report, was the last (scheduled) dose!
For anyone following my 5-hurdles of transplant, getting off of cyclosporine is the first step in the fifth and final hurdle.
Several people have asked when we will start to think of her as having a normal immune system again, so I asked one of her doctors this question and he said that barring major complications, this would probably occur sometime around mid March. At which point she would be able to go outside without a mask and also socialize with other people again.
What is cyclosporine? It’s a very strange drug in lots of ways. (It causes he entire body to grow monkey hair, for example.) The most important feature of cyclosporine for us is that it suppresses the part of the immune system that might attack the parts of Maggie that we want to keep around! We’ve been giving her the drug to keep the immune system at bay while it learns to think of Maggie cells as okay to hang out un-hassled. Now with the cyclosporine out of the picture, that immune system is free to interact with all the Maggie cells in its full glory and we are waiting for the next month or so so see what if anything will happen.