I just wanted to give a dad's perspective on what is happening now... There are a few things I wanted to write about. Her white blood cell count, or absolute neutrophil count (ANC) is really dropping now as the chemotherapy starts to do its job. Her count this morning is down to 0.0 which normally should be 800 to 1800. This shows that the bad cells are being killed, but also the good cells (ANC) are being killed as well.
A result of this is her immunity will drop to zero and she will become very susceptible to infection.We want to let you all know that we want you all to be more vigilant when you come to visit. If you are sick, fevered, runny nose, or around someone who is, or are thinking of getting sick, please try to find another time to come visit Rachel. We have also been cautioned to limit visitors to groups of no more than two or three at a time. Please don't let this discourage you from coming up because we all know what a social animal Rachel is and the good that it does to have visitors. I just wanted to make you aware of the added precautions necessary at this time in her treatment.
Some information on her treatment regimen that may be of interest... Rachel will be on chemo for at least five rounds. Each round consists of approximately 28 days. The first 10 days she will be receiving the chemotherapy drugs which are mostly given via her IV. She receives four different drugs at varying times and concentrations through that 10 day period. After the chemo is finished she is given three weeks for her body to rest and recuperate. Her ANC should start to rebound and when it is back up above 500 she can be discharged and go home for a week or ten days until the next round begins, then back to the hospital we go for round two, etc. While her ANC is below 500 she is very susceptible to infection, therefore the concern stated earlier on regarding healthy visitors.
I want to thank all of you for all you have done for Rachel and our family in this difficult time. We have been so blessed by the hands of so many and will be forever indebted to so many. Thank you for your love and prayers!