I was explaining to Harry the other day about graph versus host disease, or as we professionals call it, gvh. The nastiest cases, especially when the digestive system is attacked, can be deadly. Milder cases can be merely annoying, especially when it's the skin. Much of the time, gvh attacks a panoply of systems: the liver, the eyes, the joints, the muscles, etc. The drug of choice to keep this under control is prednisone which causes its own set of devilish problems. Water weight, high sugar, high blood pressure, muscle weakness and more, pop up and make you feel like crap.
HOWEVER, gvh has a positive side in that while your donor is kick-boxing your cells, he or she is also fighting any remnants of leukemia that might be lingering in the body. Treat it you must, but in the end, you shake hands and carry on.
Over time, gvh rides off into the sunset. It can take five years, but the chance of leukemia rearing its ugly head again are remote.
Sorry for the bio lesson. I hope you enjoyed the mix of metaphors.