I’ve been back home since Saturday pm. I slept all Sunday and most of Monday. As of Tuesday I’ve been feeling mostly back to normal.
The G-CSF worked incredibly well to stimulate the growth of neutrophils. My counts shot up from a dangerously low <100 to a healthy 1000 within 48 hours, then to 3000 within 72 hours. Apparently my bone marrow is very healthy. So I’m no longer neutropenic. Apparently this severity of immunosuppression affects under 10% of folks going through my chemo protocol (not sure underlying causes). It’s also unclear to me why they didn’t check for this since post chemo infusion white blood counts reach their nadir around day 7-10. This would have been actionable information. I’m assuming it’s because 90% of patients don’t experience this though I’ve been asking around and haven’t gotten a good answer yet. Will be digging into this piece w/oncology team. I’ll likely need to supplement my chemo with these g-csf injections to ensure I stay out of the neutropenic red zone. I’ll pickup chemo next week.
Also my hair has started falling out. This really would have been more troubling had I not pre-empted by shaving my head. Literally every time I touch my scalp I get a clump/handful of hair (see below). I took a shower yesterday and the tub was literally filled with hair. I lost about 30% of my hair in the space of a 5 minute shower. It’s a reminder that despite feeling fairly ok I am sick and these drugs are doing their thing.
I’ve always associated the start of the school year with freshness, opportunity and potential. In a strange way I still feel that way despite the circumstances.