60 ounces and a shot

My goodness! I survived my 4th round of ICE chemo and have started the stem cell immobilization process. This means that everyday I have to take: 1 Bactrim, 1 Levaquin, 3 antiviral, 6 Tums and 1 injection of Neupogen along with any pain or anti nausea medication. This is not much compared to some, but its still a lot of pills. This will continue until I have hit that 10 million stem cell number. Since I just finished chemo, my blood counts have to measured pretty often because chemo kills your white & red blood cells and your platelets. If your white blood cells are too low, then you are neutropenic and have to be hospitalized for isolation. If your red blood cells are too low, then you have to have a blood transfusion. If your platelets are too low, then you could potentially bleed to death and also need a platelet transfusion. None of these scenarios are fun, but are a reality when you are undergoing chemotherapy. Not all chemotherapy kills your immune system. Since I have what is considered a blood cancer, the chemotherapy that I receive will absolutely destroy my bone marrow. People that have other types of Cancer such as breast or other organs receive a different type of chemo. Chemo sucks either way, but there is a greater risk with people that have a blood cancer versus people that don’t. This means that you have to be watched closely to see what your body does.

I have been going to Richmond pretty regularly to check my blood counts. As of right now, my blood counts look okay, but my blood pressure is too low. Chemo can cause cardiac damage and I have to have some medical tests to ensure that heart can handle transplant. This is true for everyone that has to have a bone marrow transplant. My blood pressure has definitely been an area of concern since this whole thing began. It tends to be low (which is good), but when I get chemo it gets even lower and the medical staff start freaking out. In order to maintain or increase my blood pressure, I have to drink at least 60 ounces of fluid a day. 60 ounces? How in the world and I going to do that and will I be spending all my time in the bathroom? I know to some of you that may not be a problem, but to me it requires a huge effort on my part. My mom has been diligent about giving me a ton of water to drink and making sure that I drink it. She says that “its either this or the hospital.” Yes, mom good point.

My mother also has the pleasure of giving me an injection of Neupogen every single day. I prepare the needle and she stabs me with it. No problems there. I tried to give myself the injection, but could not do it. I am grateful that I have her because I am not sure how many other people could give me a shot. Wait a minute… I take that back. I am certain that there are plently of people that would love to stab me with a needle. 🙂 Well, sorry for all of you, but the job is taken. All in all, things are not that bad. I am still recovering from chemo and trying to mentally prepare for what is ahead. Thank you for your emails and comments, I love hearing from everyone.

5 Responses to “60 ounces and a shot”

  1. 1 Boris Maitre November 18, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    Ouf! 60 onces de liquide, ça fait 1.7 litre et des brouettes non? Effectivement, vaut mieux avoir assez de lecture aux toilettes!
    Bon, en tout cas ça fait plaisir de voir que tu gardes le moral malgré ton traitement médical draconien. Les choses ont l’air de se dérouler dans le bon sens apparemment, ce qui peut que être réjouissant et encourageant!
    Je vu que par chez toi il faisait pas très chaud, je tâcherai donc de t’envoyer par email la prochaine fois un peu de soleil et de chaleur de Barcelone car il fait bon chaud chez moi, 20 °C par moment (~68°f) 😉
    J’ai su au travers de la Suisse que vous souhaitiez avoir mon adresse email, c’est donc avec grand plaisir que je vous la donne: borismaitre@gmail.com.
    Je te souhaite très bon courage pour la suite!
    A bientôt!

  2. 2 Brooke November 18, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    G-That’s so sweet of your mama to take care of you. Thanks, Martine! Smooches!

  3. 3 Mary Wilborn November 18, 2008 at 11:41 pm

    I am thinking of you everyday! Thank you so much for taking the time to update the site and let us know how you are doing! Love ya much!!! You call me if you need a ride up to Richmond. I would LOVE the drive!

    Much love to, my Giga 🙂


  4. 4 Vanda November 20, 2008 at 10:25 am

    Keep up the good work, Geraldine!
    Next summer vacation, I will expect to see you, mom and Vivianne here in beautiful Provence and I will not take a rain check!
    Bob courage!


  5. 5 Vanda November 20, 2008 at 10:26 am

    Oops! I meant, BON COURAGE!

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