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Delays, good news and an update

lizard44's picture
lizard44
Posts: 409
Joined: Apr 2015

My third chemo treatment last month was delayed a week  because of a low white blood cell count. The count was back up after the third week. Went for my fourth treatment today after  two weeks and the same thing happened, so  we're waiting another week for the count to come back up. I asked my oncologist if  she was going to switch me to once every three weeks instead of every two weeks but she said she'll change the dosage on the 5FU when I  go in next week instead. She thinks that may take care of the problem. I hope so,  since I'd rather get them over with rather than stretch the treatment time. So far, other than  fatigue, which is hitting sooner and lasting longer, and a few bouts of constipation  which led to hemorrhoids,  I've been very fortunate in that I've had minimal side effects, and the few I've had are more anoyances than anything else, like the jaw seizing   for the first few bites of food after treatment, or getting a little dizzy when I  lie down or bend over abruptly or my voice suddenly  disappearing in the middle of a conversation (my husband is probably secretly pleased at that one Wink).  I'm still able to  get out and about once the fatigue fades and have joined a yoga class, which is wonderful and relaxing. And I have managed not only to hold my weight steady- remember, I weighed 79 pounds when I began treatment and some of you  were concerned about that, but I've actually gained a couple of pounds. But best of all, after investing in a padded toilet seat cushion and a bag of prunes to snack on Laughing, I got rid of the constipation and hemorrhoids!  Now the bleeding and the rectal pain are gone, bowel movements are  much more normal in all respects and the doctor thinks the tumor  had probably shrunk, too.  We'll know more after the next scan, but keeping my fingers crossed that she's right.

sflgirl
Posts: 220
Joined: Jan 2015

I get Neupogen shots once a week a couple of days before chemo to raise my WBC.  There is also a shot called Neulasta that raises WBC over a two week period.  You might ask your doc about that.

Best,

Andrea

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5487
Joined: Jan 2013

I had the Neupogen shots every weekday for weeks to keep my WBC up. It was a pain going down to the hospital, but I did it of course. 

A padded loo seats sounds wonderful. 

One thing that I wished I had purchased while in treatment was a Bidet. One you hook up to the loo. Oh my word! It is wonderful! If only I had gotten one earlier, I think it really would have been a life saver during treatment, especially the Radiation. 

I'm glad that you are experiencing very few side effects. What a blessing!

Its great to get your update. 

Keep on keeping on. 

Sue - Trubrit

lizard44's picture
lizard44
Posts: 409
Joined: Apr 2015

sounds like a very good idea, Sue.  I'll have to check that  out. One of my facebook friends has one and says it's the ultimate in civilized bathroom routines. Laughing

I'm hoping we can avoid  having to  resort to Neupogen and/or Neulasta and that decreasing the 5FU dosage works. Both drugs are  quite expensive, and even with Medicare and  supplemental insurance the co-pays are pretty high. Of course, if it turns out  that   what we're planning doesn't work, we'll  have to go the  medication route. My  WBC count and GRA counts were low this time, but not as low as they were the last time we had to delay, more in the moderately low than in the severely low range, and I'm taking  precautions to avoid  infections. So far, so good, and it's nice to have a husband who doesn't complain about cleaning the cat's litter box or doing some of the other  household chores when I'm not up to  doing them. Smile

Grace

danker
Posts: 1282
Joined: Apr 2012

If you are experiencing bunn burn, try RADIAGEL from walmart. It soothes and ccools.  Good Luck!

Easyflip's picture
Easyflip
Posts: 588
Joined: May 2013

you're progressing right along. Any time a tumor responds to chemo is a good thing! Best wishes!

Easyflip/Richard

lizard44's picture
lizard44
Posts: 409
Joined: Apr 2015

My white  blood cell count was still down after a three week rest, so I got a neupogen shot today.  Will go back for shots for the next two days then try for another chemo session next week. On the upside, though,  my CEA level is down from 8.7 to 6.9. Another happy note: a church group has been making and donating blankets for  patients in the infusion center so we now have our very own lightweight fleece blankets to carry back and forth to the clinic instead of the scratchy heavy  blankets from the linen service. Mine is a lovely purple one Smile

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