Friday, September 20, 2013

Embarrassing Chemo Side Effects

Oh, what a pleasant last week it's been. Ha ha. I tend to share really personal things on here, but the nature of my latest chemo adventure just does not allow for full disclosure. I will try to tactfully explain what's going on without going overboard on the TMI.

So what is my latest body part affected by the chemo? My. . . bladder! Trust me, this is a part of your body you want to function properly. My latest chemo was five days in a row of both ifosfamide and etoposide. Ifosfamide is known for irritating the bladder, so, like always, they gave me a drug called mesna to help protect the bladder. Clearly it did not work this time around.

I was in a lot of pain Saturday through Wednesday, having these horrible bladder spasms. When I would have one I imagine it was like a contraction. I couldn't talk through it, sometimes tears, usually squeezing anything close to me tightly until it was over. Saturday night I went to the ER where they guessed I had a UTI. They gave me some morphine while there, sent me home with some medications, and said it would clear up soon.

The ER communicated with the cancer center about what had happened and as soon as the cancer center was open again on Monday, they called me. They are much more familiar with my chemo regimen and side effects and things. They told me they didn't think it was a UTI and recommended I go to the hospital immediately. So I packed a small bag and headed to the hospital. I expected to leave within a day or two, but boy was I off. It is now Friday and I am still here.

This is where I will majorly gloss over the details. It turns out my bladder is just really irritated. They have tried a ton of things to get me better. Luckily, I'm not really having the bladder spasms anymore, I'm just painfully using the restroom every fifteen minutes to one hour, which is annoying, but a serious improvement.

Why am I still at the hospital? Mostly because my counts are just so low. Despite getting three units of blood and two units of platelets, things continue to drop, specifically my platelets. Platelets are what help you to stop bleeding if you get a cut or something. They are nervous to send me home because if my platelets continue to go down, my bladder will continue to be irritated and bleed even more. Yeah, not a pretty picture.

So I'm just chillin here at the hospital, using the bathroom way too much, and waiting for my counts to come back up.

Question: How many times did Crystal use the bathroom from 10:15am  to 10:15pm (a twelve hour period)?

Answer: 25

1 comment:

  1. Hi Crystal,
    My path crossed with your mom's tonight at a little Mexican restaurant called Las Brassas. We ended up having dinner together and she told me all about your battle. I have a son who has a battle with cogenital heart defects. We swapped hospital stories and she told me how amazing you are. I believe it. Our conversation led to record keeping via blogging and she told me your site. I'm sorry about your bladder! Geez that's gotta be annoying. Anyway, thought I'd say hello. Tell your mom thanks again for the adult conversation amidst my days saturated with 4 kids and abc's and potty training. Good luck with everything. You have a beautiful smile. :)