Monday, January 5, 2009

Poison in a purse

My white blood cell count was high enough to start chemo today. Last week I was at 2. This week I'm 3. Normal is 4-11. I went in at 1 and left at 4:30 this afternoon. During that time they accessed my port, took 3 vials of blood, then I saw the oncologist. He told me to eat ice constantly if I can so that the vessels in my mouth with constrict and limit the amount of chemo that resides there. Otherwise the chemo will cause mouth sores, which I had experienced a bit of over the past few weeks. Not fun. The other common side effect of the new chemo is diarrhea. If I experience this fun new game, I am to take 2 immodium tables. Each time this happens, I take 2 more, even if I am taking them every half hour. If it lasts 24 hours, I am to go to the clinic. I am very much hoping to avoid this side effect.

After visiting with the Dr, they hooked me up to hydration and carboplatin (the same chemo I was getting last time, but now a higher dose). They injected some really good anti-nausea meds in there too as well as something that made me quite loopy. That took about 2 hours, then they brought out the lovely fanny pack. It is black and huge. They hooked me up (via my port and an IV line) to a regulator. The regulator is attached to a bag of Fluorouracil (also called 5FU). This will pump the 5FU chemo drug into me in tiny doses over the next 5 days. I carry it around in the fanny pack, and I hate it! I'm sure I will get used to it soon enough though. Don't know how well I will sleep with this thing on. I don't love to sleep on my back, but it looks like that's my only option for now.

After the clinic visit, I stopped by the pharmacy to get more anti nausea pills and some anti diarrhea meds just in case. I really hope to not need them. If so, I probablyy won't spare you the details, because part of the reason I write this is to one day help someone who is going through the same thing. I want them to be prepared.

So far, I have some ringing in the ears, and my hearing is a little fainter than normal. I am not feeling sick, just tired. I can still taste food, so I am going to have a good dinner tonight with the kids.

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