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In our last episode of Health Update, my M-protein level was starting to rise, indicating that the Revlimid was losing effectiveness and the multiple myeloma was staging a comeback. This is normal and expected after two years. When it got above 1.0, it would be time to switch to a second-line treatment. In the end, I got nearly three years out of the Revlimid, but the time has now come to move on:

The new treatment will consist of an oral version of my old friend Velcade teamed up with Darzalex, a monoclonal antibody that’s one of the slew of new treatments that have been approved over the past few years. I will also once again be taking the evil dex, a sleep killer marketed as a corticosteroid. During my last round of dex, I used my treatment nights to write a 40-page tutorial on special and general relativity. I can’t really say why I did that, but I’m sure it would have been a publishing sensation if I had ever published it.

Anyway, the new treatment will start in a week or so. It’s once a week for two months, then once every two weeks for two months, and then once a month. The total length of time depends on how I respond. Once the M-proteins are back under control, I’ll begin a maintenance routine which will hopefully last a couple of years. Keep your fingers crossed.

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We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

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Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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