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Blood Levels and Aranesp injection??


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Just thought I'd let everyone know that Darrell started feeling really bad last thrusday and really weak. It continued until today, along with a small cough, sore throat and runny nose..and a low grade fever of 99.8.. So we called the oncologist and had to go to Columbus today to get his blood levels checked and they did a chest xray just to be sure his lungs were fine. They were clear, They put him on antibiotics. His WBC were 1.5 and ANC is 0.9 ... his PLTS 203 and his HGB was 8.9 so they started him on a shot of Aranesp (Darbepoetin Alfa) They said this is like procrit except newer and you only have to get every 2 weeks instead of every week. He has to get this every 2 weeks for probably 3 to 5 injections... Hopefully this helps...They said if his temp. had been 100.5 they would have admitted him with his levels being so low. They didn't give us his rbc levels, computers was down, so they just wrote these down for us. He is suppose to stay away from crowds and people...Which I'm sure I don't need to tell any of you about this... Does anyone have any experience with this injection and what kind of side effects did you have if any? I would appreciate any information on this that anyone can offer me. Thanks!!

I know this is one expensive injection!!! Thank God for insurance... They said they bill the insurance company 2500.00 for just one shot..The pharmacist came in and talked to us about it. Says it cost them 1100.00, big mark up huh?

Can anyone tell me how fast a persons levels usually come back up? I'm sure this varies!

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Buddy just had a shot of this last Tuesday because his wbc was 1.2 or 0.9. not sure now, can't find the paper work. It was the chemo that has brought it down. this happened the time before with Taxotere but they didn't give him a shot that time. His wbc then was 2.1. They never said anything about the cost of this med nor did they say he would get it again. He doesn't go back until a week from tomorrow. As far as I can tell he had a little more shortness of breath but that was it. As if that wasn't enough.

I am so glad you posted this because I had forgotten about it and noticed his shortness of breath being a little more and was so worried it was something else. God, when does the worry stopppppp.

I think, no I am not going to say I think he might be a tad bit better because I really don't think he is....he is not walking as much this past week.

Give Darrell a big hug from us and have a good nite sleep if possible....

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I remember reading that shortness of breath can be a side effect from this. I hope Darrell doesn't have this problem..If so at least it should just be temporaily. It does seem that the worrying never stops!! Thats all I do anymore...Sometimes I think I'm gonna stress my self totally out into medical problems myself. Darrell was so grouchy yesterday.. I just had to bite my tongue. I understand him not feeling good and that this makes him grumpy not to mention having the cancer alone makes him this way. I DO UNDERSTAND!! But dang sometimes its hard! The nurse practioner said that he actually could of had this shot last time, but no one mentioned it..I wish they had of, maybe he wouldn't feel so bad now, and who knows maybe it wouldn't have mattered.. They told me this only help 6 out of 10 of the people thats why after the 2nd or 3rd shot if it doesn't help they discontinue it with it costing so much...

I hope Buddy gets feeling better too!! I'll say a special prayer for him and you!!


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