CLL: Chemotherapy and its affect on my immune system
Hi, My name is Mary and I am 59 years old, I was diagnosed with Chronic lymphocytic Leukemia nine years ago. since then I have had chemo twice; the first time was two years ago for four weeks and the second was last year for six months. during that time I have been fighting one bought of pneumonia after another. This morning, I saw an urgent care doctor for pain in my left lung and was told I had pleurisy. I work as a cook in a daycare but take all precautions necessary to protect myself from germs even taking multivitamins daily; Nothing is helping! does anyone know of any thing I can take to help my immune system that actually works?
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Hello @pokeyspride2002 (Mary). This is a great question that I think it is relevant for many types of cancers as an unfortunate side-effect of chemotherapy is the affect on the immune system. While I am not a medical professional, I am aware that one of the side-effects of CLL itself can be chronic infections. There are levels that can be checked to determine your immune system's capability. If you don't mind sharing, and the generalness of the question, have you spoke with your hematology/provider recently to have your immune system and CLL levels checked?
Hi Justin, Thank you. and Yes, I check in with her regularly; but it seems every time I bring up the possibility of getting help for my immune system she seems to shrug it off and changes the subject by telling me there is no drug out there that can help with immunity; I just have to take precautions of which I do daily. I am at a loss as to where to turn to for help in this because I don't understand why she won't consider it.
I would like to invite @dougmann and @gmack who have both specifically talked about some of the treatments you have undergone and the affects on the immune system. I hope they join us to share their experiences with how they coped. While we wait for their input, have you thought about seeking a second opinion if your current medical provider is unwilling to address your questions and concerns?
Goodmoring Justin, and Yes, I have already been talking to my son about it. If nothing else, I will contact the Mayo clinic in Rochester Minn. and get some advice.
@pokeyspride2002 hi, may l suggest you to visit a dietician or phyto therapist width this question, with specific diet and/ordietary supplements it is possible to increase the immune level,i had some experience with this in the past,
Thank you Helen
Hi, Mary. I was diagnosed in 2013, underwent chemo and went into remission in 2015. Since that time, I have been on IVIg (human immunioglobulin). My current schedule is infusion one morning every two months. There is no pill, no permanent solution, but one day every two months, I get to spend the day with a group of very special people (infusion nurses and other cancer patients). I hope this helps!