Flu Shots

britta
britta Member Posts: 107
Hi,

My oncologist told me last Tuesday, that I could have a flu shot, but when your immune system is challenged they only worked in one out of six people. Finished RCVP in May and then had the Zevalin in July. I asked him how long I should wait to have one, and he didn't seem to have a definitive answer. Anyone else asked their drs about the flu shot?

Darlene

Comments

  • dixiegirl
    dixiegirl Member Posts: 1,043 Member
    Mine says
    Mine tells me to absolutely get it. The shot is not a live virus so I'd think you'd be fine, but I understand your hesitation.

    I've not had problems. I think I finished chemo in August and I think I got the shot that november.
  • allmost60
    allmost60 Member Posts: 3,178
    dixiegirl said:

    Mine says
    Mine tells me to absolutely get it. The shot is not a live virus so I'd think you'd be fine, but I understand your hesitation.

    I've not had problems. I think I finished chemo in August and I think I got the shot that november.

    I'll ask
    When I go in for treatment tomorrow I'll ask my doctor about getting a flu shot. I haven't had one this year, so it's a good idea to find out. Thanks for reminding me. Take care and I hope you have a great week. Love..Sue (FNHL-2-3A-6/10)
  • miss maggie
    miss maggie Member Posts: 929
    dixiegirl said:

    Mine says
    Mine tells me to absolutely get it. The shot is not a live virus so I'd think you'd be fine, but I understand your hesitation.

    I've not had problems. I think I finished chemo in August and I think I got the shot that november.

    flu shots
    I agree with dixie girl. The injection is not a live virus. Here's something to think about. My friend was getting her flu vaccine around nov 3. She was so busy and didn't have time to get shot sooner. Anyway, she developed the flu that went into pneumonia. She is now in the hospital. I cannot imagine getting the flu with my immune system the way it is.

    Of course, whatever your doctor suggests. My doctor said get flu vaccine.

    DX 09/09 indolent, marginal, stage 1, low grade B cell NHL - I found out my sub type yesterday. "Extrandal marginal zone b cell lymphoma"

    Blessings to all from maggie
  • KC13167
    KC13167 Member Posts: 215

    flu shots
    I agree with dixie girl. The injection is not a live virus. Here's something to think about. My friend was getting her flu vaccine around nov 3. She was so busy and didn't have time to get shot sooner. Anyway, she developed the flu that went into pneumonia. She is now in the hospital. I cannot imagine getting the flu with my immune system the way it is.

    Of course, whatever your doctor suggests. My doctor said get flu vaccine.

    DX 09/09 indolent, marginal, stage 1, low grade B cell NHL - I found out my sub type yesterday. "Extrandal marginal zone b cell lymphoma"

    Blessings to all from maggie

    Flu
    FYI: Before I got my shot, my oncologist warned me to stay away from anyone who recently received the nasal spray, flu mist, as that is a live virus and those with compromised autoimmune systems can actually catch the flu that way.
  • 711tom
    711tom Member Posts: 44
    Hi Darlene
    My ONC told me not to get one until I get through the low counts from the Zevalin. You had it in July, did your counts go down a lot? I just received the Zevalin last Tuesday so counts have not fallen as of yet. They all expect them to go down but could not really estimate how much. They did tell me to restrict travel (for my job) until my counts come back up, presumabley to eliminate exposure to the flu and colds. Let's hope you don't get it but let me know if you do get the flu shot, seems to me that we should both get one. Stay strong!!

    George
  • britta
    britta Member Posts: 107
    711tom said:

    Hi Darlene
    My ONC told me not to get one until I get through the low counts from the Zevalin. You had it in July, did your counts go down a lot? I just received the Zevalin last Tuesday so counts have not fallen as of yet. They all expect them to go down but could not really estimate how much. They did tell me to restrict travel (for my job) until my counts come back up, presumabley to eliminate exposure to the flu and colds. Let's hope you don't get it but let me know if you do get the flu shot, seems to me that we should both get one. Stay strong!!

    George

    Flu shots
    Thanks everyone for your input. I'm really wanting to get the shot, I know I can't get the flu from the shot, but what he said is with a weakened immune system we cannot form the antibodies to fight off the flu, so the shot is essentially worthless and we feel as though we are protected. My onc is a lymphoma specialist at Mayo Rochester.

    George, my counts went really low about the 6th week after Zevalin infusion, and bounced around down there for about 4 weeks. They are slowly coming back, but are not as good as when I finished chemo. My wbc went down to 2.3 and is now at 3, absolute neutrophils went down to one - now at two, and my platelets were at 40,000 - now at 134,000. My main complaint is I'm so tired and my arms and legs ache all the time. Have you been able to work through your treatments?
  • 711tom
    711tom Member Posts: 44
    britta said:

    Flu shots
    Thanks everyone for your input. I'm really wanting to get the shot, I know I can't get the flu from the shot, but what he said is with a weakened immune system we cannot form the antibodies to fight off the flu, so the shot is essentially worthless and we feel as though we are protected. My onc is a lymphoma specialist at Mayo Rochester.

    George, my counts went really low about the 6th week after Zevalin infusion, and bounced around down there for about 4 weeks. They are slowly coming back, but are not as good as when I finished chemo. My wbc went down to 2.3 and is now at 3, absolute neutrophils went down to one - now at two, and my platelets were at 40,000 - now at 134,000. My main complaint is I'm so tired and my arms and legs ache all the time. Have you been able to work through your treatments?

    Darlene
    Thanks for the info! That is why my ONC is saying don't get it, he thinks it will not be effective. My counts are good now but I am only a week in and I am sure they will start to go down soon. I just did the Zevalin as a single treatment, no chemo before. When I went through chemo (in 93 CHOP; 05 Treanda-R; 08 CVP-R) I did work through all of it, some days were really rough and I am not sure i actually worked that much but I was there. My counts never went down that dramatically from the chemo with the exception of the first three CHOP treatments; so for the most part I tolerated it fairly well. I lost a lot of weight on the Trenda-R but my father was dying during that time and I think that may have had more impact on my diet than the chemo. This Z is a new frontier for me and my ONC says because of the previous chemos I may experience significant count drops but on the other hand I had almost no marrow involvement which should help. I have already noticed significant tumor shrinkage which is awesome.

    I think you are at one of the premier facilities in the country so I would feel confident in what your ONC is saying. I go to UVA in Charlottesville, VA and I am quite confident in their abilities and the access to so many specialist really makes me feel good about the treatments. I live in Richmond so it is an 80 mile drive but well worth it. Stay strong and hopefully you will be less tired and stronger each day. I will add you in my prayers!!
  • onlytoday
    onlytoday Member Posts: 609 Member
    711tom said:

    Darlene
    Thanks for the info! That is why my ONC is saying don't get it, he thinks it will not be effective. My counts are good now but I am only a week in and I am sure they will start to go down soon. I just did the Zevalin as a single treatment, no chemo before. When I went through chemo (in 93 CHOP; 05 Treanda-R; 08 CVP-R) I did work through all of it, some days were really rough and I am not sure i actually worked that much but I was there. My counts never went down that dramatically from the chemo with the exception of the first three CHOP treatments; so for the most part I tolerated it fairly well. I lost a lot of weight on the Trenda-R but my father was dying during that time and I think that may have had more impact on my diet than the chemo. This Z is a new frontier for me and my ONC says because of the previous chemos I may experience significant count drops but on the other hand I had almost no marrow involvement which should help. I have already noticed significant tumor shrinkage which is awesome.

    I think you are at one of the premier facilities in the country so I would feel confident in what your ONC is saying. I go to UVA in Charlottesville, VA and I am quite confident in their abilities and the access to so many specialist really makes me feel good about the treatments. I live in Richmond so it is an 80 mile drive but well worth it. Stay strong and hopefully you will be less tired and stronger each day. I will add you in my prayers!!

    Flu Shot
    Hi,

    I am being treated at Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson Hospital in Philly. My Onc had me get the flu shot and I didn't have any adverse reactions from it, I guess it's because my levels were decent and it is not a live virus. Good luck. My doc didn't want me to risk getting the flu that would be worse than any reaction I could get.
  • britta
    britta Member Posts: 107
    711tom said:

    Darlene
    Thanks for the info! That is why my ONC is saying don't get it, he thinks it will not be effective. My counts are good now but I am only a week in and I am sure they will start to go down soon. I just did the Zevalin as a single treatment, no chemo before. When I went through chemo (in 93 CHOP; 05 Treanda-R; 08 CVP-R) I did work through all of it, some days were really rough and I am not sure i actually worked that much but I was there. My counts never went down that dramatically from the chemo with the exception of the first three CHOP treatments; so for the most part I tolerated it fairly well. I lost a lot of weight on the Trenda-R but my father was dying during that time and I think that may have had more impact on my diet than the chemo. This Z is a new frontier for me and my ONC says because of the previous chemos I may experience significant count drops but on the other hand I had almost no marrow involvement which should help. I have already noticed significant tumor shrinkage which is awesome.

    I think you are at one of the premier facilities in the country so I would feel confident in what your ONC is saying. I go to UVA in Charlottesville, VA and I am quite confident in their abilities and the access to so many specialist really makes me feel good about the treatments. I live in Richmond so it is an 80 mile drive but well worth it. Stay strong and hopefully you will be less tired and stronger each day. I will add you in my prayers!!

    Amazing
    George,

    That's amazing news that you've noticed tumor shrinkage in a week.
    Mine was used as more of a "clean up" after the chemo. I think there are four of us online now that have had the Zevalin in the last year.

    Keep in touch and thank you for the prayers, you will be in mine also.

    Darlene
  • truckingalong
    truckingalong Member Posts: 445 Member
    britta said:

    Flu shots
    Thanks everyone for your input. I'm really wanting to get the shot, I know I can't get the flu from the shot, but what he said is with a weakened immune system we cannot form the antibodies to fight off the flu, so the shot is essentially worthless and we feel as though we are protected. My onc is a lymphoma specialist at Mayo Rochester.

    George, my counts went really low about the 6th week after Zevalin infusion, and bounced around down there for about 4 weeks. They are slowly coming back, but are not as good as when I finished chemo. My wbc went down to 2.3 and is now at 3, absolute neutrophils went down to one - now at two, and my platelets were at 40,000 - now at 134,000. My main complaint is I'm so tired and my arms and legs ache all the time. Have you been able to work through your treatments?

    Fatigue issues
    Britta,

    I relate to what you are saying about fatigue - aches etc. I just was done with 6th week of chemo and now feel weaker and realize I have lost muscle mass. My sister who is a gym trainer just sent me a new study saying that cancer patients should exercise as much as they can. Duh - little late for me!!! I will have to move around as much as I can but it is not easy - I have done Yoga but it is not enough. Do you get Neupogen or Neulasta shots to get your WBC count up? That helped me get some of my energy back during the off weeks. I also try to eat more as well as do more physical activity during the off weeks like doing light housework. I notice I feel better after I stay hydrated and eat more protein. Hope this helps.

    With good thoughts
    Liz