At University Hospital Feb. 2011

At University Hospital Feb. 2011
February 11, 2011 at University of Utah Hospital

Friday, April 29, 2011

Getting chemo in Moab

Phil is the most optimistic person I know. Even cancer can't discourage him. But day 3 or 4 of each chemo treatment always gets him down. Phil described it as the "cumulative effect of the chemo kicking in." He just doesn't feel right and that sends him into depression--so today's been a tough one. But if you hear him on the radio, or meet him in person, you'd never know it.

Chemo was a little touch-and-go this time. Phil barely met the required White Blood Cell (WBC) count of 1500. His count was 1510. (At 1500, nurses are instructed to call the doctor.) It's not just the WBC that results in this equation. For chemo patients, their neutrophil count makes the difference. Neutrophils are immature white blood cells and their level is called an Absolute Neutrophil Count (ANC). The WBC and ANC are factored together to determine if there's enough neutrophils to mature and make up for the loss of WBCs.

Despite this near miss, Phil got his infusion on Tuesday and was disconnected from the portable pump on Thursday. Losing that encumbrance is always a celebration! Actually, this has been a stellar week! Phil has worked every day, long days, with brief naps at Shon's in the afternoon. These siestas are enough to rejuvenate him. Those of you who know Phil, know that he eats, breathes, and sleeps radio, and that has made a big difference in his ability to keep going this week--being in Moab so he can work. We SO appreciate Shon and Roseanna for opening their home and their hearts to us!

Tonight Phil is in Moab broadcasting live from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the April Action Car Show. This guy knows no mercy when it comes to radio! I'm surprised there was any WBC or ANC count at all--I thought he had 100% proof radio waves flowing in his veins!

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