Blood counts and Ibrance

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

I can't help but feel disappointed with my CBC results this week; the numbers themselves are not bad, but it's the fact of how they have gone down compared to last week. Because my blood was not drawn until AFTER my oncologist appointment yesterday, I don't know what his thoughts are on it.

I've been on the Ibrance now since June 28, so I think the drops in some of my counts this week are due to that, as that is listed as one of the side effects, especially with the WBC (white blood count). I knew it would probably happen eventually, but I was hoping not so soon, as I've only been on it a little over a week now.

Last week, my hemoglobin was 12.3; yesterday it was 10.6. My WBC last week was 4.1, this week it's 2.12, which is considered low, but over the past year or so my WBC has been in the "2s" most weeks. Usually, I wouldn't worry too much about a 2.12 WBC, but due to the fact it's gone down from 4.1 in only a week, that makes me think that it's probably the Ibrance causing it. Having a WBC that is too low can put you more at risk for infections, even catching a simple cold can be dangerous to someone whose WBC is too low.

I've had my WBC down in the "1" range in the past, when I've been on I.V. chemo; I did not get sick from it, but usually my doctor would want me to stay home and away from crowds, and sick people especially, for a few days until it went back up. The first time my WBC got down that low, it was several years ago, and it was when I was still working. Even though I felt fine, he gave me orders to take at least 4 days off from work (I worked in retail at that time) until the counts went back up.

There is not really anything I can do to keep the WBC from going down. I'm not going to get paranoid about it, but I do need to be a little more cautious than usual. And I know that if my WBC gets down to a level where I have to worry about, I'll be getting a call from my doctor's office, and they will let me know if I need to adjust the dosing schedule of the Ibrance. Most of my friends and family also already know that if they are sick, that is not the time to visit me.

I take the Ibrance at dinner time, and I've noticed that I seem to start feeling sleepy within a couple of hours of taking it, which is not really bad thing, because I have also noticed I have been sleeping better at night since starting the Ibrance, (with the exception of a couple of nights when people were setting off a few fireworks around the neighborhood at all hours of the night), so I will stick with what I am currently doing and keep taking it at dinner time. The schedule for the Ibrance is taking it daily for 21 days, then taking a week off, so it will be interesting to see how I sleep during the "off" week.

I slept pretty well last night, but was still pretty tired all day today; some of that might be the drop in my hemoglobin level; I shouldn't be so tired with it at 10.6, but I think it's more the fact at how far it's dropped since last week. I also think maybe I overdid it a little yesterday. But I paced myself, and still got a few things done around the house this morning. I took a 45 minute nap, and even though I did not sleep, I felt good enough to do a chair workout this afternoon. I'm doing better with the pain issues today too. Looking forward to an early bedtime tonight, and hopefully, tomorrow will be even better.
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