I saw my oncologist last Thursday and I told her about my experience at the Pain and Symptom Clinic consult. I started with the bit about not getting any medals. Let’s just say she was a little stunned that a doctor would say that to anyone. I suspect that she didn’t want to believe me but she knows me well enough to know I wouldn’t make something like that up.
I told her the rest and she said she would talk to the nurse that I knew that had been at the appointment with me. My onc would pass on my feedback and get my next appointment switched to the other doctor at the clinic. Hopefully I will get along better with him as I will need good rapport with someone at the clinic down the road.
After that appointment I kicked around the cancer agency for a bit until it was time to pick up my next cycle of Capecitabine pills. When I went to the pharmacy I was told they were backed up and my pills wouldn’t be ready for at least another half an hour. I decided I had better things to do, like going to see Moonlight (excellent movie but a little depressing at times), than just sit around waiting so I requested the pills be shipped over to the pharmacy at Saanich Peninsula Hospital and I would pick them up on Friday.
When I got up Friday it had snowed a little bit.
I had been told my pills should reach the San Pen pharmacy around 10:30 so I left a little after that to go pick them up as I wanted to get my Friday morning dose in. When I got to the hospital there was no space in the short term parking, of course, so I had to go to regular parking. That means buying a 2 hour ticket. Boo. I figured I’d be in and out in 5 minutes so I would skip the ticket buying and hope for no bad parking luck. At the pharmacy they didn’t have my pills. Apparently the courier doesn’t get there until between 11 and 12. Gah.
I hadn’t eaten yet so I went and bought a ticket and then bought the last sad looking muffin in the cafeteria. And either I was really hungry or that was an awesome muffin, I sure enjoyed it. I hung about for a bit, talked to Mom and found out she was sick. Uh oh. We had spent most of Tuesday together so I hoped I didn’t get it. I was feeling a little scratchy throated tho.
Finally my pills were available and I could go home. I spent the rest of the day doing nothing and by evening I was beginning to get a fever. Joy. Saturday morning my fever was at 38.2ºC so I phoned the on call oncologist to find out if I should be taking my pills.
I was told to skip my morning dose and if my fever did not go away I should go to emergency. Ugh. My neutrophil count should not be low and I was pretty sure it was a virus but by 2 pm my fever was sitting around 38.5ºC so Ian took me back to San Pen. It had been snowing off and on and that seemed to keep people away from emerg as there were only a few patients ahead of me.
In the end we were there for about 4 hours. I had blood cultures collected plus regular blood work. I was happy as they follow the lactate protocol for sepsis. It may be a standard thing now, I forget I have been out of the lab for such a long time now, but I remember when adding lactate to the sepsis protocol was just being researched and put into practice. It turned out I was febrile, my temp hit 39ºC at one point, but my neutrophils were still fine so it wasn’t febrile neutropenia.
Based on the algorithm supplied by the Cancer Agency I didn’t need antibiotics and I could take my regular doses of pills. I could even take Tylenol to control the fever. All in all I had a virus and I could get on with life but I should stay home for a few days as my immune system is likely feeling abused and I don’t need to pick up anything else. That was okay with me, after a day of fever I felt like I had been hit by a truck so I was happy to sit on the couch and watch Netflix.
On Sunday my fever was down and by Monday it was gone. It is now Tuesday and I still feel wiped out. It could be from the fever or from adding the Lapatinib to the Capecitabine regimen or it could be a combination of the 2. So I am still spending lots of time on the couch watching the snow……
And finally, the puppies and kittens, or 12 year old Orchid giving me a CAT scan
And 10 year old Jasper after some fun in the snow:
He could look happier, but he is tired from running through the snow and he is hoping I will remove the snowballs he has stuck between most of his toes.
And that is it for now. Everyone on the west coast stay safe tomorrow, it sounds like the weather could be pretty awful.