Chemo delayed

Hey guys,

I went in for my chemo today and the doctor decided to delay it until next week due to my blood counts. My neutrophil count was almost 0 and the doc said that we needed to hold off. She is also going to start me on Neulasta starting next week.

I just have a couple of questions.

Is it pretty common to have to mess with chemo schedules due to this type of stuff?

Are there any nasty side-effects of Neulasta that I should expect?

I'm a bit worried because everything I have read talks about how important it is to stay on schedule as much as possible. I have only had 1 treatment and I am already off track.

On a happier note, have a very happy Thanksgiving everybody.

Ryan,
Our son had his checkup today (through first cycle now) and blood counts were acceptable. Doc told us they have strict guidelines as far as what is acceptable not to suppress the bone marrow too far. It was explained to us that if it was suppressed too much it can not regain on its own and then you're faced with a needing a transplant.
I hope this helps! Have a great Turkey day filled with lots of calories!
Christine

Ryan it is normal for the chemo to be delayed because of blood test results and other things. Sorry I didn't have to take neulasta so I don't know about that

I had my first Neulasta shot on Monday and it wasn't too bad. I experienced a few aches in my legs and a mild headache which was controllable with Tylenol.

My husband had to get that shot once. It made him feel pretty achy all over.. especially in his hips and lower back. But, as mentioned above, taking Tylenol seemed to help deal with most of the pain.

Greg never had to have any of his treatments delayed, but from what I've seen/heard/read that's a pretty common practice. They're going to monitor many things closely and blood count is one of them.

I know it must be frustrating to want to move through this process and road blocks are thrown in the way. Just do your best to understand that they're trying to take good care of you!

Hey Ryan, after one of my chemo's my Neutrophil count was .25 and they delayed chemo for me too. It shakes you a bit but it's more important that your blood counts are steady.
Neulasta can make your hips and lower back ache because it stimulates the bone marrow. Heat packs and a heavy pain killer should do the trick. It gets easier each time you inject.

Good luck.
Annie

Thanks for all the advice guys. I guess I'm just a bit disheartend that my treatments are "off-schedule" so quickly. Hopefully the Neulasta will do the trick so we can get things back on track.

I take neupogen shots every week. My neutrophil count dropped rapidly after my first chemo but two neupogen shots later I was fine. The aches and pains suck, but it keeps u on track. I'm not sure why they didn't assume your blood count would be low and start you with shots sooner...... Curious indeed.

That would have been nice. I'm not looking forward to the aches and pains from the shots, but whatever it takes to keep things on schedule. I'll have to ask my Doc why they didn't start with the shots earlier.

Ryan,

I had the Neulasta shot after every chemo treatment. A lot of folks complain about how much it hurts, but besides making my knees, hips, and lower back a little stiff and achy I had no problems with it.

You have to get the shot within 72 hours of your chemo treatment for it to be effective. It's a very expensive shot, but it did seem to do it's job well - I never had to delay a chemo treatment.

Pete

Yeah, it's expensive! I think it was about $3,000! I about choked when I saw that on our bill.

Pete-Thanks for the info. I will gladly deal with achy bones to not delay treatment again.

Ouch...Is that $3000 per shot? I'm glad my insurance will cover it but wow that is ridiculous.

Yeah, it's because they have a patent on it, and there's not a generic yet. SUCKS!

How come I am taking neupogen? I'm confused... Is that the name of the medicine and neulasta is the company? I'm yet to hear that name out here. And I haven't gotten one bill yet... I got two -- not a bill-- statements from my insurance from the hospital.... It says I owe about $2500 but I haven't gotten a bill. My chemo nurse said my chemo and neupogen shots are covered under labs and I don't have to pay anything.... Would be nice to get confirmation on that.

cali,
From my limited knowledge...neupogen and neulasta are two different drugs. Neulasta is what my husband gets only once after chemo session. If I remember correctly, neupogen requires more shots (?) Maybe 'googling' will give you the info you need.
Joyce

Thanks Joyce... To be honest, I'm tired of learning more about my chemo stuff. I'm taking a beating with it and it's just .... Exhausting.

I can just imagine, Cali...
New to this site, so I haven't caught up yet about you're going through (but I will)

I hope you have 'someone' to help you through this...besides us folk.
Joyce