A setback with my recovery, as I get hospitalised by an infection.

There’s a certain kind of inevitability to events in life. Within days of my last post, where I declared myself infection-free and not in hospital, my temperature flared and I ended up admitting myself as per the instructions I had been given.

What followed was a rather grueling and unpleasant ordeal lasting 11 days, captured in the usual matter-of-fact style in my YouTube video:

And of course, some aspects of the hospital stay which I didn’t capture onto YouTube, for fear of upsetting anyone unfortunate enough to be following in my treatment footsteps and using the videos as a guide to what might happen. Prepare yourself for the gruesome details…

Like the knowledge that your condition is continuing to deteriorate each day due to an infection you currently have absolutely no immunity to, even though you’re in the best place and apparently getting the best IV antibiotics. Or being sick so often your whole stomach hurts, and unable to stop even when there is ┬ánothing left inside you to bring up. Or the empty disbelief when someone takes your routine observations and tells you that your blood pressure and oxygen sats have suddenly dropped below acceptable levels. The nursing response was fantastic, calmly putting me onto an oxygen mask for the rest of the night, and setting up the first of three bags of fluids to be run in via my drip over the course of the next few hours. But all I could do was to lie there dumbfounded, wondering where it was all leading and could it possibly get any worse.

The next day I was started on vancomycin, and its effect was nothing short of miraculous. Within just a couple of days I felt fully recovered, and keen to get back home as soon as the course had been completed. Circumstances also meant that I was given a series of injections of a growth factor, to stimulate my body’s production of white cells and get me quickly out of the dangerous neutropenic territory.

I’ve been back out of hospital for a little over one week now, and generally feeling much better. There’s still a lingering physical tiredness which strikes after only minutes of even the lightest activity, forcing me to rest frequently and hampering my return to normality. I’m unsure if that’s a result of the infection and hospitalisation, or whether it’s linked to the original chemo’ treatment. Something to ask my consultant about when I see him again this week.

Maybe my next post on this particular subject will be the one I’m most looking forward to, where I hope to announce the treatment has been a success and I’m officially ‘in remission’.

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