Tag Archives: neutrophils

Peritoneal Dialysis Part 2

Bud had rump steak for his breakfast so I think we can safely say he felt better today. He did throw up last night just as he was heading for his pre-bed wee. If I’d been quicker I could have got the kitchen roll underneath it. Fortunately B was quicker at passing me the sick bowl after my first mouthful of food at tea time. I then got a look when I answered in the negative to the question ‘Have you had any anti-sickness today?’. I had felt a teeny bit ropy at lunch but it passed and I was able to carry on with my watercress bap so I thought I’d give the tablets a miss.

So back to the PD –

the chance of infection does increase with the use of PD as compared to the use of a neck line. The glucose rich fluid and its warm temperature is kinda a holiday heaven for bacteria. Infections however are a risk with any line and the antibiotic line lock used in the renal line reduces the infection rate by 80%, these locks aren’t used with Hickman or PICC lines so by that comparison they would also have a greater incidence of infection and I wouldn’t hesitate at having one of them. The glucose fluid isn’t as sweet as the one previously used

baths are out as sitting in dirty water isn’t good for the cleanliness of the line. Some people do have very shallow baths but where’s the fun in that? Swimming however is not only allowed but encouraged. A waterproof dressing is popped over the exit/entrance site (I can’t decide if it’s where the line comes out or goes in) and then removed and showered down as soon as out of the water. The chemicals in the pool keeping it clear of bacteria – but what about other people’s wee?

the line itself is inserted under either general or local anaesthetic. I said that I’d prefer local. It’s not that I’m looking forward to it but I can’t say I’d be head of the queue to voluntarily have any type of line fitted. I’m okay when it’s happening but get a tad anxious before hand – more the thought than anything. However with the local there’s the added bonus of IV tranquiliser which will be a first and I understand that general generally carries more complications than the procedures it’s used for

PD is only recommended for five years. Someone has been having it for 12 but this has been his choice and he is aware of the recommendations. Apparently it came to light that it can make things inside squishy and more prone to infection after a certain time so a time period had to be be put on it and it was five years

if the line gets infected then it’s a case of antibiotics, removal of the line and then a new one can be put in approximately six weeks later

and the final consideration is storage. A 30 day supply of the bags of fluid amount to about 6′ x 4′ x 4′. B has suggested they go in the garage which would be acceptable or a shed will be provided to go in the garden. The only thing being that if the weather was really cold a week’s supply would need to be brought into the house as the machine doesn’t like cold fluid. B is also now wondering if we can get two weeks’ worth delivered direct to wherever we go on holiday as he doesn’t think there’d be room in the car for us three, out luggage and the boxes. It has been suggested that he just stick a trailer on the back of the car – not by me – and that went down like a lead balloon

So the nurse has added me to the list and I’ll wait to hear about getting the line put in and then once it has settled and healed round the fuzzy bits that secure it I’ll spend up to a week being showed at the hospital how to do it both with the machine and manually.

I can’t wait, I’m already thinking ‘Will I sleep tonight?’ knowing that I have to get up early in the morning. I’d need to call into the Blood Day Unit for blood tests as required whereas these are taken on dialysis now but that’s no hardship and I know that if my haemoglobin was 8.0 as it was on Saturday I’d get some blood that day, on renal however it was reviewed by a doctor and I may or may not get some tomorrow depending on what they say then. (They don’t routinely transfuse they tend to try stimulating the body’s production – which doesn’t provide the nice quick fix of getting some fresh HB rich blood.) The HB level certainly explained why I felt so listless on Saturday morning even after a nap. I didn’t do much else for the rest of the day but I have felt less tired yesterday and today – maybe because I knew so haven’t pushed doing anything but did manage to go for a walk with B and Bud. My platelets had also come down to 101 and my neutrophils were 1.6. B was a tad worried that my counts had gone down instead of continuing the upward trend.

Yesterday I had a couple of low grade temperature readings 37.6 degrees celsius (99.68 fahrenheit) and 37.4 degrees celsius (99.32 fahrenheit) from morning through to afternoon but by tea time it had settled back to 37.0 degrees celsius (98.6 fahrenheit) and it’s been fine today. Where my line goes in/comes out the site has been a little red but I had it swabbed two weeks ago and nothing showed up and it’s not changed since.

Hopefully I’ll get a couple of units of blood tomorrow and be full of beans by Wednesday.

Oh, and when I said Bud was feeling better – he is but it’s done nothing for the odour he’s been producing – we’re lucky it hasn’t made the paint peel.

The knitting’s bright, the knitting’s (still) orange!

Okay, I know what am I doing with all my time?  Am I STILL knitting orange? Yes it would appear I am!  So what? Huh? Huh?

And people keep commenting, well more people than usually comment on my knitting, I think it may be a bit eye catchingly BRIGHT!

AND I’ve nearly finished – realistically within the next two weeks but in my mind by the end of the long Easter weekend is seemingly realistic – ahhhh, knitters’ optimism you can’t beat it down with a stick.

Plus my knitter’s optimism is buoyed by the fact B has to work bank holidays so it’s a typical working weekend except no hospital visits Friday and Monday so all that extra time.  I got to go today and Tuesday instead.

Despite my neutrophils hitting 0.5 today I was able to get Velcade, this level is apparently the absolute lowest for receipt of said medication.  There is no pharmacist’s optimism about my neutrophils being high enough for another shot on Tuesday.  I however thought that feeling whoof on Tuesday may account for some of the drop along with having it a day early and I get an extra two days for my neutrophils to regroup and then, when I sat down to use the lap top I put my hand under my chin, I noticed that apparently I have a slightly swollen gland.  Initially I thought it was the spot that had been brewing nearby but no, it would appear to be a gland.

I’m just going to keep my head down and keep knitting and by Tuesday my gland will have gone back down, my neutrophils will have come back up, my knitting will be finished and I can get round to checking my email inbox and its 1,000 unread messages and turning the washed laundry pile back into the ironing pile!  I may be a bit behind with things – only may be.

Go Neutrophils! And a pair of sunglasses and a pancake pan

Yesterday my neutrophils were… I tell you what let’s have a look at all my most important-est blood counts

Haemoglobin – Friday 10.7 / Monday 10.2

Platelets – Friday 159 / Monday 114  (and if anyone can tell me how to tab on wordpress I would be very grateful)

White Blood Count – Friday 1.9 / Monday 1.0

Neutrophils – Friday 0.9 / Monday 0.4

At 0.9 it’s just 0.1 away from being in the non neutropenic category completely and 0.5 above severely neutropenic which meant we could go out for lunch.  We went back to the Mexican that we’d abandoned last time in search of a Chinese that didn’t exist.  I had BBQ ribs and they were good.  B had his usual Cajun chicken.  Having the ribs made me realise there are two sets of people in the world (presumably or it could be a quaint English/British thing) those that will eat messy food in public and those who won’t.  I have friends who won’t go near spaghetti bolognese in public.

As we have established I don’t eat that much meat so am no regular to chowing down on ribs in a restaurant with my sleeves rolled up, BBQ sauce up my nose, enough paper napkins to wallpaper our lounge and an inappropriately small finger bowl, however when the ribs called out to me from the me’n’u like yesterday I didn’t think ‘No, that would be awkward to eat and potentially embarrassing I won’t get it.’ I thought ‘Mmmmm, ribs.’ with a slight amount of drooling.  That said I was kinda glad the restaurant wasn’t packed when I had to do a furtive check to see if I had sauce on my left boob – well, not my actual…oh, you know what I mean, the dress material over said area.

And then I got a migraine, which did buy me a much needed pair of sunglasses. It was a lovely BRIGHT day (very warm in the sun, very cool in the shade) and that much have triggered a fairly, oh who am I kidding, it was a bit of a stinker of a headache.  When we got home (I didn’t feel up to knitting on the way back) I took 1g paracetamol and 60mg of codeine, double the amount I now take for bone pain, and it did ease quite a bit, enough that I could read during a relaxing bath.  Although relaxing in the bath takes on a whole new concept when you have a PICC line in your upper arm that needs to stay dry.

I’m pretty sure it was light triggered as when I tried to use the computer later it started up again and I had to request lamps on in the lounge rather than the ‘big light’.  I took the same dose of painkillers then and again this morning so it’s down to a tolerable background looming round my right eye.

I’m now off to give B another nudge as he’s getting out of bed at 9:00 (currently 9:56) and I’m going to make pancakes on my new pancake pan – also bought by the migraine which just wanted to get the pan and go home.  We both waited with bated breath when I said to B whilst in the queue ‘Is there anywhere else you want to go?’ knowing there was a 99% chance there wasn’t but neither the migraine or me wanted to look like a killjoy.

I just realised that the only two ailments I have have the sound ‘my’* at the beginning maybe I should make enquiries about any others just in case.

*And yes I know some people pronounce migraine as ‘megrain’ but even so it’s still all about me!




You be Pluto and I’ll be Goofy

And apparently I am goofy according to B and I was only referring to who got which cup of tea.  In case you were wondering Mickey and Donald were in the dishwasher.

Other Kilgallon household news

I’m now classed as severely neutropenic with a level of 0.4 and therefore wasn’t able to eat the cherry tomatoes I’d included with my packed lunch today.  It also meant I wasn’t able to have Velcade today either.  We’re seeing if my levels go up on their own and my next visit is for a clinic appointment this Friday.

I wondered if my folliculitis (infected hair follicle), which has cleared up completely, and/or floxacillin may have affected my neutrophil levels and it turns out that penicillin can cause a decrease in them.  I’ve written it down in my myeloma notebook  so I remember to ask about it at the clinic.

Along with the bacteria avoiding diet gardening is a no-no because do you know, and I know some of you do, just how much bacteria is in the soil – any excuse to knit instead of gardening.

I have two sore fingers and a sore thumb from sewing up lots of ORANGE knitting.  Obviously now I’ll have to keep a careful eye on these in case they swell up and go funny/manky!  How embarrassing would a knitting related infection be.

The toilet has been blocked since Saturday despite B making a squillion trips up and down stairs with a kettle of boiling water on Saturday afternoon – actually the boiling water was just making the up trip via the stairs and going down a whole or even, hole, other way.  The blockage has also persisted despite two lots of caustic soda going down the pan too.

A plumber came out today and said that his remit goes as far as the ‘toilet area’ and not the drains as they don’t have the right equipment (ahem!) so we needed a drainage contractor.

A drainage contractor is calling out in the morning at which time I will need a stiff drink if he gets it sorted easily and a completely rigid one if it gets complicated.  I am unsure whether the guy at the drainage company appreciated me saying that he should have asked me whether I was sitting down before running their prices past me.

We have been granted use of a neighbour’s toilet and it’s not like we don’t have a second toilet, well it’s more of a facility really, okay, okay it’s a bucket in the garage.






To cut or not to cut that is the question

My hair is just about due another trim but since it is noticeable thinner, well it is to  me when I run my hand through it, but maybe yet doesn’t look it, I can’t decide whether to cut it or not.  It is certainly coming out more than usual.

This time however isn’t like during my stem cell transplant when it made a sudden emergency evacuation, this time is more like a leisurely stroll out of its follicles.  I don’t think it’s growing any more and I’d hate to give it a trim only to reveal general patchiness that isn’t obvious at its current length.

B is on bald patch alert in case it gets a bit patchy round the back where I can’t see it.  I’m not too sure how reliable he is going to be and probably need to sort out back up spotters.

I think I’ll give it another week and see how it goes – boom boom!

Last week during B’s holiday we spent 10.5 hours at the hospital (not the 15 B initially thought we’d stayed there for) and all I managed to get done was the beaded centre section of this crochet sandwich.

When we went on Friday I was able to have Velcade but my netrophil count was borderline.

Hb – 11 (oh er Mrs, highest it’s been since January)

Platelets – 135

WBC 1.3

Neutrophils – 0.6

I got tomorrow for a blood count but may not be able to have the Velcade and it could be a GCSF injection (to make me produce more of the little neutrophils) instead.  This Monday I aim to make sure I have two knitting needles with me!