First cold

I was in no mood for posting yesterday, even though life has been boiled down to surfing, blogging and TV watching over the last month or so. Today I’m home alone again, but with nary a thing to do… and no desire to nap. So here goes!

Yesterday was the day I came down with my first at home, immunosuppressed cold. I woke up early that morning to my early warning system telling me a head cold was on its way. My sinuses were just beginning to protest. My throat was getting irritable from the my nose’s drainage. I was slow getting out of bed.

“What’s wrong?” my wife asked.

“I’m getting sick. I think I’m going to work from home today.”

Later, my mother in law comes by to pick up the kids. After ascertaining the situation, she pops her rhetorical question: “You’re going to call the doctor, right?”

After one or two non-commital, hedging grunts, my wife started to get in on the action. “It’s probably just a virus, but you better call the doctor and ask if you need prophylaxis.” (I have ER to thank for this.) Now I have my script for azithromycin, which says on the packaging, “less that 1% of patients have to stop therapy due to side effects.” Why do I care (besides the obvious, phobia value)? It just so happens that four years ago I had to stop taking azithromycin due to side effects (nausea and vomiting).

Boy do I feel lucky. First, I got a rare form of leukemia (one of 600 cases per year). Then, I was one of the rare patients who have to be hospitalized for the chemo (which is “generally well tolerated”). When I went in for my follow-up visit with my oncologist, the nurse exclaimed, “we were all surprised you had to be hospitalized so fast.” Then I get sick right after I go back to work, and the treatment of choice is an antibiotic which 99% of patients can tolerate – and I’m an exception. (I’m only on it because I’m allergic to two other classes of antibiotics.)

So here I am. I’m back at home, drugs in hand, ready to fight the good fight against illness. Thank God for compazine.


  1. Glad to hear that you are doing well.

    I just did a blog search trying to find someone else with hairy cell leukemia. I am a 44 year old male.

    I was diagnosed on June 21, 2007. I didn’t even know was sick. Like you, it was routine blood work that signaled something was wrong.

    Starting June 25, 2007, I was in the hospital for seven days of Cladibrine and then an additional seven for some acute life threatening infection, which I never found out exactly what it was.

    My neck is still swollen. I got that during the infection. My counts are still low, so maybe they will give me another neupogen shot.

    I can’t believe 1) i was sick and 2) i had complications related to treatment, as I’m (or was) generally pretty healthy.

    Anyway, It seems like you may have bounced back faster than I, though it’s just a little over a month since I was first treated.

    It does seem I’m in remission judging by the preliminary first post treatment bone marrow test, and now they are doing a staining of the sample. Now if my bone marrow would just start making lovely little nutrophils and white blood cels.


  2. Nice blog, I think you have written this article very well, you bring up some solid information. Thank you for sharing this information with me I really do appreciate it. Keep up the good work. Look forward to seeing what else this blog has to offer. =) TY for taking so much time working on such a great blog.

  3. Have you started buying lottery tickets? Playing the ponies? Trying to get a book published? There’s gotta be some way of making the odds work for you! Hope you’re feeling better soon.

Leave a Reply to ColleenCancel reply