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Germ phobia!?

MarksKerry
Posts: 34
Joined: Oct 2006

Mark had his second infusion on Monday as he posted earlier this week. He's doing great, although I think we pushed things a little today and he's been pretty bushed this afternoon and tonight. He also has activace yet again as no blood return; x-ray showed position to be correct, so he's also on baby aspirin and coumadin.
That's just sort of an update -- I seem to have a cold -- I feel fine, so maybe it's allergies, but.... His counts were down (obviously not unusual) and I need to get a read on how nuts I should be about staying clear of him. I'm trying to wash my hands a lot, and got out my hand sanitizer, but we do share a house. I don't want to panic at the thought of him getting a bug, but I don't want to wreak havoc either! Any thoughts here would be appreciated! I'm doing the Cold-eze and Airborne like it's going out of style! Should I move to the guest room? Help.........
Best to all
Kerry

vinny3's picture
vinny3
Posts: 933
Joined: Jun 2006

Hi Kerry,

My wife had a cold for about 3 weeks during my chemo and I didn't catch it. Just finished chemo 2 weeks ago and have a slight cold. Your are doing the right thing in washing your hands alot but don't get to phobic about it. He will probably be ok. Even when my wife had the cold we shared some drinks and I didn't get it.

Dick

chynabear's picture
chynabear
Posts: 483
Joined: Jul 2005

Hi.

My onc and nurses recommended me staying away from highly public places; ie, church, movies, mall, etc. They only said to have family wash hands regularly.

My personal feeling was that I would rather have their touch and company. I felt that it helped me heal rather than put me at risk.

I remained very healthy during my chemo. My mother-in-law and child both caught horrible colds and I somehow managed not to. Also, everyone made sure they had a flu shot. It was a year of shortage but they considered me high risk so everyone in household got it.

How does mark feel about the germ issue?

Thanks for the update.

Tricia

kangatoo's picture
kangatoo
Posts: 2115
Joined: Feb 2004

Hi Kerry...aw...don't go nuts gal.I think we all got a little more serious with hygiene after dx. Moving to the guest room is probably not a bad idea but as you are in the same general area if he is going to get your cold he has probably already been exposed already. I used to avoid people like they had the plague and that was nigh on impossible to do. I simply made sure my friends knew that while I was on chemo the immune systwm was up tha creek and told them to let me know if they were unwell. Unfortunately my son(of all people) let me near him when he was feeling poorly, consequently I caught his cold and the old body took a pounding.
Do the best you can to keep personal hygiene at a top level....but frankly if you are sharing a house then he's probably already been in contact with any bugs. Here's hoping he will not suffer any ill effects.
cheers, Ross n Jen

nudgie's picture
nudgie
Posts: 1483
Joined: Sep 2006

Before I started my chemo on 18 August 06 i purchased Purell hand sanizter for my purse and home, laytex gloves for misc cleaning and surgerical masks if my counts get too low. In my house is my wonderful husband, sone (23 yrs old) and brother-in-law. They all wash their hands all the time and are trying to take care of themselves better knowing what can happen with low counts. I am scheduled for my 7th treatment tomorrow, 27 Nov but already now my WBC counts will be too low for chemo.

Use common sense, wash hands, use Lysol for phone, bathroom, etc., when shopping I wear gloves so my hands do not touch the carts, and dress appropriately.

On another note, my Onc Doc asked if I wanted the FLU and Penu Shots, but I turned him down.

MarksKerry
Posts: 34
Joined: Oct 2006

Thanks all! Of course Mark read your answers first because he gets up earlier than I do, and he told me I had to set up a tent in the yard! I said, well, I'd get the motorhome out of storage, but he said, no, you all said I had to sleep in a tent. Yeah -- in the snow -- as if!!! We both did get flu shots, and I still think my deal may really be allergies. But, we will just keep washing our hands and doing our best! We also have my 23 year old and her boyfriend living here, but they are moving on Saturday, so I suppose two fewer sets of germs! I'll let you know how we do -- I love being able to ask 'dumb' questions here! On a side-bar, does anyone know of anyone, or forums for those with lupus? I was diagnosed last week, although I suspect it's been lurking for 25 years!
All the best
Kerry

kangatoo's picture
kangatoo
Posts: 2115
Joined: Feb 2004

Actually not such a dumb question Kerry...and hi Mark.Chemo is bad enough without the extra need for added infections.As I said we can go overboard with contamination awareness but a little extra care is worth the effort to lessen the chances of Mark feeling worse than needs be.
Mark...if yah really gunna make her move to tha tent you could at least install central heating!!!.....lol!
cheers, Ross n Jen

lfondots63's picture
lfondots63
Posts: 822
Joined: Jan 2006

Hi Kerry,

As a mother of 4 kids I was always worried about getting sick from them during chemo. They would get sick and hang all over me. Luckily I joked that the chemo chased away all the germs! What self respecting germ would try to fight against the toxins we are putting in our system? LOL. I think you are doing everything right. If hubby wants a tent put up, tell him to move into it... ONLY KIDDING.

My aunt has lupus also but I don't think she will know of any websites. She always says she is computer illiterate. HUGS.

Lisa F.

MarksKerry
Posts: 34
Joined: Oct 2006

Well - no blood return after the activace today. So, the onc may request a dye study on Monday -- are we having fun yet? He's coping remarkably well through all of this; quite the trooper. He did get a little freaked when it sounded as if they wanted to do a general for the dye study -- NPO and have a driver on hand -- but turns out that is just a CYA deal in case the dye affects him and they need to give him versaid. So -- we're more calmed down -- we seem to have a great onc team that actually listens, gets answers and follows up! As my son would say "It's all good"...

changing
Posts: 135
Joined: Oct 2006

Sorry to hear about your lupus:( As far as the germ thing goes...I believe every hopital has it's own set of germs...each hospital keeps track of their own germs so to speak and when there is an outbreak of illness ..then...they'll do studies to determine if it started within the hospital itself. I say that because I believe each home environment has it's own set of germs and our systems sort of acclimate to that environment. Therefore, if your not realy sick...then I think it's perfectly safe to snuggle up with your hubby like you've been doing. Notice I'm writing this in the evening...when there's a better chance of you reading this before hubby does...that way if you want some "me" time you can still visit the tent:)....Take care ...you seem like such a neat couple!

MarksKerry
Posts: 34
Joined: Oct 2006

You are so funny! I'll snuggle up tonight -- I hate the port though -- I always feel like I'm going to hurt him! We'll get those logisitics worked out though! And I am NOT going to the tent! I think the lupus is just going to be annoying - but I'll cross that bridge when I see the rheumatologist.
Kerry

vinny3's picture
vinny3
Posts: 933
Joined: Jun 2006

It's funny you mention the port. That is what my wife hates the most. It sits where she would usually put her head. Now that I have stopped chemo she wants it out. My onc wants it in for two more years. I will wait until my next scans but figure they can put another in if necessary.
Dick

KathiM's picture
KathiM
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

Kerry,
I, like others was actually saved from all the 'normal' illnesses everyone else around me was getting. I think that your presence is MOST important. My daughter, who was my primary caregiver, made sure to wash her hands before touching stuff.
One day while I was feeling better and working at a client's,my phone rang and it was my onc's nurse. She asked where I was, what I was doing. I told her, and she said "Well, you should wrap things up for today and go home. And please don't touch your face before washing your hands. Your white blood count came back .7"....wierdest thing, I felt great!!!

Sounds like you and Mark have the laughter thing going...cool! He is one lucky person to have such an angel as you watching over him!

Hugs, Kathi

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