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White blood count way down

ReeRee2's picture
ReeRee2
Posts: 39
Joined: Oct 2017

I am ge my second round of chemo. My white blo count dropped again. Today it was at .660. They are going to see if insurance will approve Neulast. 

Anyone else have this happen. They said, if it goes to .5 or below I could win a hospital stay.

bobby66
Posts: 69
Joined: May 2017

It does happen. I try to keep mine up by eating veggies, vitamins and healthy food. Google food that is good to keep your white blood count up. Good luck

Mikenh's picture
Mikenh
Posts: 777
Joined: Oct 2017

My WBC and RBC and other numbers were quite a bit below normal on chemo and radiation.

mozart13
Posts: 118
Joined: Nov 2016

My lab results were constantlly in the boots, started to receive boost injections after 3rd dose of folfox.

Dose of oxylaplatin had to be dropped couple of times, after 8 doses, folfox had to be stopped , neuropathy kicked in, last 2 doses received xeloda pills. Few times chemo had to be delayed by one week, every think was low, neutrophils, RBC, Leukocytes, liver functions were elevated, I was tired, 3rd day after folfox was toughest. There were days I couldnt get out of the house, memory was polluted by chemo, couldn’t remember 3 things, eyes were wattery, gained weight. My hemoglobin dropped during chemo from 141 to 121, finished chemo 4 weeks ago, coming around nicelly.

Be patient, injections will make you feel better, at leastthey did for me.Chemo is small price to pay, considering it can kill the cancer.

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5222
Joined: Jan 2013

Sadly, allot of us are or have been in the same boat.  I persoanlly had the Neupogen shots, mostly in the tummy or in the fleshy arm. Chemo was cancelled on days my count was too low. 

Also had low red and platletes. Had to have one blood transfusion for the low red. 

Good luck getting insurance to cover. 

Tru

airborne72's picture
airborne72
Posts: 278
Joined: Sep 2012

I am scheduled to begin FOLFOX6 next Wednesday for at least 6 sessions.  My highest WBC level has only been 4.9 since June.  Am I going in to this with a marginal level of WBC or are we using two different units of measurement?

Mikenh's picture
Mikenh
Posts: 777
Joined: Oct 2017

I agree: interesting. Mine was 4.22 the week before surgery, 4.49 the day of surgery (probably before it), then 7.24 and 7.69 the day after surgery. Were the higher levels in response to the surgery? Probably. I'd guess that they're going to take blood again at the post-op meeting this Tuesday.

ReeRee2's picture
ReeRee2
Posts: 39
Joined: Oct 2017

My white blood count is at .660 so at .5 something I am in trouble. Going to start wearing a mask when I am out. I do eat veggies and bananas along with other fruit. My potassium was also low.

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5222
Joined: Jan 2013

No matter what you look like, or how people stare, wear a mask, especially when you know you're going to be around school children and folks who think its fine to share their germs. 

Tru

Slow-runner
Posts: 55
Joined: Oct 2017

My husband's WBCs dropped after his first and second treatments but we were told that the specific white cells they look at are the  neutrophils. Neutophils need to be at least 1.0 for chemo, according to the protocol that we are following. I don't know what foods we can eat to increase our white count (not sure there really is any) but sources of potassium are easy to find - bananas, spinach, leafy greens, potatoes. You're smart to wear the mask when you're counts are low, and watch out for other people, especially toddlers - they maybe adorable but they are truly walking germ carriers.   

Bunny822
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2017

I just completed 3rd Round of Folfox. Also now with low WBC and RBC. Just received 3 subcutaneous injections of Neupogen to boost WBC. Will know if effective on 11/20/17. I'll keep you posted. No real issues with the shots, was told can cause bone/joint pain. 

 

Footann
Posts: 2
Joined: Nov 2017

The same here after 2 rounds had to get the injection also...had lots of muscle and body ache..I found out that when I  go to disconnect before i get the shot i would take  a 600 mg ibuprofen and it helped me with the body ache

tanstaafl's picture
tanstaafl
Posts: 1292
Joined: Oct 2010

My wife has been on daily, oral chemo for over 7 years.  The first year we struggled with her RBC, Hgb, WBC and platelet counts dropping.  Her first doctor almost stopped her treatment a few months in.  We were able to find alternative adjuncts to beef up the 5FU action without oxy- or iri-.  Although her immunochemo formulation is not as rough on the body, there were things that might apply to others here, even if it is not enough to fully restore blood counts.   

1.  radical removal of folic acid sources - obsolete, poor quality multivitamins (most common), enriched flour, commercial bread and grains. Folic acid is toxic in any quantity with 5FU, more is only worse.  Need supplements that use leucovorin, L5MTHF, or best, natural folates instead.

2.  liver for natural folate and other nutrients; an integrative dr might have a plant based recommendation

3.  high quality PSK clones (a hot water extract of Coriolus versicolor, differences matter)

4.  dosage adjustments,it has to stay active and yet not burn the bone marrow;  mostly we adust leucovorin

5. bone marrow soup

6. remove sources of inflammation (e.g. dental)

7. other supplements are possible.  

Last week her WBC was 5.8, RBC 4.5 and platelets almost 150, although I suspect she may have slipped some on her 5FU content.   I assure you it is hard won, a little thing here, a little improvement there.  There are oncology oriented integrative doctors that (any of) you could seek out and discuss any recommendations/experiences here, too.

Better living through (natural) chemistries and mind over medicine.

ReeRee2's picture
ReeRee2
Posts: 39
Joined: Oct 2017

i just read an article on that. Thinking I need to read it again. I do not eat beef anymore after my resection. My juicer was just delivered and I am taking CBD oil.

My potassium is always low. Today my WBC was .8 so I know the Neulasta is working. I will now be getting Neulasta with each treatmen.

if anyone has any good recipes to share on the soup please post. I am also looking for good juicing recipes.

Lily Flower's picture
Lily Flower
Posts: 253
Joined: Jul 2017

I remember my mom used to always make soup from bones. , It just taste better too. She would get the bones from the butcher or she would save the rib bones and make broth from it. Then add veggies. I wish I had learned from her cooking skills. Now that she's gone and I miss all her cookings. 

CathC
Posts: 17
Joined: Sep 2017

Hi there, my Mam has cancer we have used a lot of  supplements, juices, fermented food and bone broth to assist her recovery combined with chemo.  The bone broth recipe is easy and you can use it as is or use it as a stock for anything. I constantly have jars of it in the fridge. You can use with chicken or beef bones (with marrow). I use a slow cooker/ crockpot and all organic with filtered water. You literally pop it all in the pot for 24 hours or 48 hours for the beef bones.... chicken/beef bones with an onion, carrot, garlic, celery stick, turmeric, ginger, cider vinegar (3 tablespoons), tamari ( or soy sauce), 3 bay leaves, thyme, and anything else you have; spinach, leeks, cumin, paprika.... fill up with water and simmer for 24/48 hours!!!

we juice wheatgrass everyday and a combination of green veg (kale, spinach, celery, cucumber) with apple, beetroot, ginger , 1/2 lemon (peeled) and mint leaves(if we can get it) we mix it up depending on what we have and what she likes!! We find that the supplement graviola has helped keeping her neutrophils up!Best of luck with it all xx

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5222
Joined: Jan 2013

My favourite herb! Well, one of them. 

I have an Areogarden, and have mint year round. It is also a very hardy plant, and will grow anywhere. 

I love mint!

Tru

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6550
Joined: Feb 2009

When my white count was low they gave me Neupogen shots.  My insurance wouldn't cover the other shot so my husband gave me mine 5 days in a row.  Hoping that you don't need it but if you do, you might have terrible aches everywhere especially your head and hips.  They don't tell you that, or at least they never told me.  Hope that things go better for you.

Kim

airborne72's picture
airborne72
Posts: 278
Joined: Sep 2012

I began my second cycle of FOLFOX6 yesterday.  Before the infusion my oncologist discussed my case, just as he had the prior cycle.  After mumbling some scientific data and outcomes, etc. he finally said that he was going to reduce my bolus by 50% because my WBC was dropping.

I asked for a replay on the explanation.  He again mumbled about the acceptable thresholds for WBC and infusions.  I asked - where am I and what is the threshold.  The lab had just reported on my earlier blood draw.  Yesterday I was at a 2.5.  The clinic's threshold for intervention (injections maybe?) is 2.0 and the threshold to temporarily cease infusion is 1.0.  Because he is well aware of my motivation to only do 6 cycles instead of the standard 12 and to do so as soon as possible so I can get this ostomy reversed, he decided to continue the infusion yesterday but to simply reduce a portion of the formula.

I then asked what I can do to affect the situation, such as diet modification or lifestyle modification.  Because I am nursing my ostomy diet right now I am pressed to injest sufficient amounts of food to truly boost my blood levels and he agreed.  But his concern about lifesyle modification is doable and it caught my attention.  He cautioned me about being in crowds or around anyone who may be ill.  Mentioned wearing a disposable mask.  Then it told me to not get cut due to low platelet count.

When I got home I logged into my records, via the online portal, to review my lab results from earlier in the day.  My curiosity was focused on "rate of change" in my blood levels, particularly the WBC count.  On 15 November it was measured to be 4.5.  Yesterday it was 2.5.

I'm going to think happy thoughts about increasing numbers of white blood cells for the next 13 days.  I so much don't want treatment delayed but I even more don't want any more injections.

Jim

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