Clinical Trial and Neutropenia


posted by on Chemo Side-Effects, Chemotherapy, Clinical Trial, Lung Cancer, My Lungs


Just had chemo on Friday, which was chemo number 4 in the clinical trial. I have been having low levels of while blood cells and this time, they determined that I have neutropenia.  Neutropenia is an abnormally low level of neutrophils (a type of white blood cell).  As it was explained to me, it’s the first line of defense against infection.  Many cancer patients can get a shot to help bring their blood counts back up, but not me.  I’m on a clinical trial and its not allowed with this type of chemo apparently.

So what does that mean?

I need to be careful. I was told that I should wear a mask when I’m around a lot of people.  Also, if anyone in my home is sick, again, I should wear a mask. Basically I should avoid crowds, which makes it very difficult to take tae kwon do. They also said I should avoid doing the dishes and vacuuming. Can you say, woo hoo for me! See, there is a silver lining in every situation.

I am also planning on singing on Good Friday with a large worship choir. A mask will prove difficult with that obviously.  Neutropenia can come and go, so I’m sure I will be better soon.

Another Clinical Trial Side Effect

The most difficult side effect of this clinical trial is the fact that it is often hard to breathe.  Since I started this clinical trial, I cannot take a deep breath very often, until that 3rd week when it’s an off week.  Then, things start to get back to normal, which is awesome.

I fear sneezing as it kind of hurts. My daughter Kaitlyn taught me that if I put my finger under my nose it will stop a sneeze…and it worked. I just thought that was something silly they did in movies.

I also find it hard when singing and when I try to take tae kwon do. I only do what I can do, right?  It’s not easy for me to sit back and do nothing.  I feel like a slacker, but thank God for my husband. He has been awesome with doing things around the house. So, woo hoo, for him.  Love you honey and thank you.

Overall I’m thinking this clinical trial is the biggest challenge so far. I’m not liking it too much, but if it’s the cure to my cancer, then I’ll stick with it and won’t complain.

Have a nice day everyone.  Keep smiling.

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