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Posts: 45
Joined: May 2013

Good morning all,


I need some advice. I am starting 4 rounds of FEC next week, and my doctor has given me a perscription for Neulasta that he says I can take preventatively after the first treatment if I want to. I've just gotten done with 9 weeks of Taxol (tumor isn't shrinking anymore so they're switching me early) and my blood tests are all normal right now. He's saying because I am sensitive to getting pneumonia when I pick up colds I CAN use the neulasta now if I want to, or I can wait and see what happens with the chemo and do it then if needed.

My question is, based on the experience some of you have had with neulasta, is it worth the possible SE's to do it now when I don't actually need it, run the risk that my blood count will drop so far in 3 weeks and i'll manage to find someone in August who has a cold and catch it, possibly giving me pneumonia again, or should I wait until my appointment 3 weeks after the first chemo and see if it's actually needed?

Thank you in advance :)



Cheryl 1
Posts: 42
Joined: Jun 2013

I didn't have this Kat, but, want to say good luck to you!

VickiSam's picture
Posts: 9085
Joined: Aug 2009

Chemo infusions on Tuesday,  with a shot of Neulasta the next day. I find the Neulasta is the culprit of my 'weaken' stage.! I would also have crying spells. I think it is because we are so TIRED and achy! .!  I took Claritin day of chemo, and continued claritin for 3 days.  I SWEAR it helped me with the aches, pains and headaches.

You are on the road to recovery... 

Strength, Courage and HOPE for a Cure.

Vicki Sam


CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

Kat, just to let you know, my white count has always been on the low side (3-4,000).  I did not have neulasta first round.  Six days later, my white count dropped to 0.5 and I was hospitalized with a temp of 101.  I was on IV antibiotics for several days and felt like crud.  Ended up getting 6 shots of neupogen.

Everyone's situation is different and I don't know your baseline wbc.

Of course, now I get the neulasta and the lowest my wbc has gotten is 1.2--not great but it has kept me out of the hospital.

I was advised to take claritin a few days before and after.  Also, there is research indicating that taking aleve the morning before neulasta and continuing an aleve protocol for a few days after can really reduce se.  See: http://news.cancerconnect.com/naproxen-may-relieve-bone-pain-associated-with-neulasta/

I had minimal pain with my first 3 neulasta shots.  Last time, I had significant shoulder and jaw pain, but onc thinks I had a flu-like syndrome from taxotere.  I don't know, but I didn't take the aleve last time.  I will on Friday!

Good luck!

Of course, do not take the aleve without your onc's approval!

Posts: 45
Joined: May 2013

My white count was at 7.3 as of last week (I keep copies of my blood test results from every visit). I'm going to talk to him again next week before chemo but I think i'm going to hold off on the Neulasta until it's actually needed, I think i'm gonna have a hard enough time with this new chemo without throwing SE's from Neulasta into the pot :-/


Thank you for all the answers!



Posts: 20
Joined: Aug 2013

I called it "nuelasta, it'll kick your asta!" becasue it made my long bones hurt so bad. But every little (and big!) pain was worth it! I was able to be around the walking petri dishes that are my grandkids, go shopping, etc. without worrying about getting "sick"- sick being a relative word here. I never once got "sick" while on it. If I have to do it again, I'll take the shot, gladly. And then I'll moan and groan for a few days, and get up and do it all again!

My advice would be to take it before you need it. Before you get a cold, or anything else. It's another tool in the box to make the whole chemo thing do-able. Good luck!

Posts: 4
Joined: Aug 2013


I also ended up in the hospital after my first chemo. Waited until 4:30 AM to call the oncologist, who said get to the ER NOW! I argued with ER Dr about taking antibiotics b/c I get c-dif. He said I would die if I didn't take meds. YIKES! Anyway, after a 3 day stay in the hospital, I improved. After that had Neulasta shot day after chemo. I think I took Aleve before shot. I remember feeling achy, but not too bad. 


If you get a fever, severe diarrhea (sp), call Dr immediately. Even if it's the middle of the night! Good luck with your treatments.



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