Tango With Taxol, Part 1




Well, here we are again at the Bureau of Poisons and Profits (also known as the oncologist’s office, wink wink ;)).


After a wonderful 3-week “chemocation”, I’m back to start my first round of Taxol. First, the CBC to see how my blood counts are holding up. My hemoglobin is bouncing back at 12.2, up from 10.2 last time.Yay! But my white blood count is still pretty low at 2.5, even though I had Neulasta after the last round. I almost got sent home for bad bone marrow behavior. I imagine that my white blood cells are holed up in a dark, cozy corner catching up on “Breaking Bad” reruns, refusing to come out. At $8,000 per shot, I’m gonna drag those¬†bitches out if I have to reach in that bone marrow myself!

This time, I am getting extra pre-meds above and beyond what is given for AC (Adriamycin/Cytoxan). There is an extra steroid, Decadron, combined with Pepcid. Then a whopping dose of Benadryl to prevent an allergic reaction. Let me tell you, I never knew that Benadryl could pack such a punch. Talk about loopy! After about an hour of pre-meds comes the star of our story, Taxol. Dramatic music plays here. If you haven’t read about my horrid experience watching an allergic reaction to Taxol, catch up at¬†https://drlisamallen.wordpress.com/2013/06/08/trampled-by-the-kool-aid-man/. I’ll keep you posted on how everything turns out.


I took some advice from several fellow breast cancer warriors and decided to ice my hands and feet during Taxol infusion in an effort to prevent peripheral neuropathy. This is a more common side effect, causing anything from numbness and tingling in the hands and feet to severe pain. Being a runner, feeling my toes is not really optional, so I put some ice in ziplock bags, dug out some snazzy electrical tape, and voila! The stunning results are below. I’m thinking this could be an overnight sensation. Think of the possibilities! These can go to the beach, the pool…or, you can just slip them on to keep you cool while you tan. Genius!