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How long does it take the immune system to fully recover after chemo?

(19 Posts)
listenglisten Sun 05-Jul-09 23:05:10

My dd (5) had chemo which finished just over 2 years ago and now with swine flu around, I'm just wondering if she would be classed as having a 'normal' immmune system now?

I will talk to her consultant this week but just in case anyone here has any thoughts or info

lisad123 Sun 05-Jul-09 23:11:03

well I know dh has been given a prescription for anti virals "just in case" but his still on chemo. As long as in remmision, I think your LO should be fine, as long as it was all straight forward.
Chemo sucks big time.

listenglisten Sun 05-Jul-09 23:15:30

Hi lisad123 - I hope your dh is doing well and coping with the chemo ok, I have been reading your posts about his illness.

lisad123 Sun 05-Jul-09 23:17:50

we do ok most of the time, cant imagine how i would cope if it was a child.
Hows is yours LO doing now?

listenglisten Sun 05-Jul-09 23:19:28

She's doing well thanks but still has regular check-ups, scans and x-rays.

Highlander Mon 06-Jul-09 10:05:55

my SIL was told it would take 18 months to 2 years for her body to return to normal.

But I guess it may be quicker for kids as they are still growing and developing? (random guess!)

listenglisten Mon 06-Jul-09 19:45:17

Thanks Highlander, was your sil advised to do anything specific to strengthen her immune system?

I hope she is OK now.

pinotmonster Mon 06-Jul-09 19:57:40

My dh has cancer and is having chemo at the moment. At our last appt I asked the consultant about swine flu and he said he would just be given the anti virals. He did say if he did get it he is likely to be more unwell with it than Joe Bloggs with no underlying conditions.

It's so rife now I am thinking it's quite a likely possibility.

Listenglisten, I am glad your dd is doing well, I can't imagine coping with cancer in a child.

Lisa, I hope your dh is doing well on the chemo.

Northernlurker Mon 06-Jul-09 20:02:59

I rang our oncology department in a bit of a panic a few months ago (I work in a hospital) because we were going to be seeing a relative at a wedding shortly thereafter and she had chemo finishing about 5 months before this. Dd3's nursery had been walloped with chicken pox and I was worried about her having it and passing it on. The nurses I spoke to said it was only likely to be a problem if the chemo was much more recent, think she said 6-8 weeks max.

listenglisten Mon 06-Jul-09 21:09:41

My dd was given antivirals when she was exposed to chicken pox before she was 6 months off treatment. She got chicken pox again last summer and was OK without treatment. I remember the consultant saying they would always give antivirals if it was less than 6 months after treatment finished.

listenglisten Mon 06-Jul-09 21:10:44

pinotmonster, I meant to say I hope your dh is doing well too.

lisad123 Mon 06-Jul-09 21:32:10

yep anti virals is something DH has had 2 doses of already and we are only 4 months in, its hard work knowing what to do for best.

Pinotmonster what type of cancer does your dh have? Feel free to email me if you prefer minx101 at hotmail dot com. I donty have CAT.

pinotmonster Mon 06-Jul-09 21:37:32

Lisa, he has cancer of the oesophagus but can't have surgery as it had already spread to liver at time of diagnosis so he is on cycle 6 of chemo.

We have been told it's incurable but he is responding well to chemo at moment and lesions on the liver have disappeared although he is only having 1 more treatment before he has to have a break and they said it would more than likely return within a year.

Prognosis is not an exact science which is what makes it hard to explain things to the kids!

How far along is your dh in treatment and what cancer does he have if you don't mind me asking?

lisad123 Mon 06-Jul-09 21:41:37

we are 4 months into this. He has leukemia, and we have been told he has had it for atleast a year as GPs missed it 4 times. We are still to early to know what is happening for him, but so far hopeful, although chemo daily forever isnt something we like to think about.
How old are you kids? ours are 6years and nearly 2.

pinotmonster Mon 06-Jul-09 21:51:10

Yes it's amazing how chemo and appts etc can take over your life so I am looking forward to having some chemo free time. Our kids are 11, 7 and 5 (very soon to be 6!!).

That's awful it was missed! Has that made a difference to treatment?

As much as poss we have tried to carry on as normal, with kids you have to and there is always something to do which keeps you busy!

lisad123 Mon 06-Jul-09 21:59:20

its being missed has changed some things, like first round of chemo was quite intense and he was rushed straight in with no chance of freezing sperm, and also means that there is a chance he has done permant damage to spleen.

Yes normal is wonderful although he is tired alot. Where abouts are you?

pinotmonster Mon 06-Jul-09 22:27:20

Lisa, have mailed you x

ThingOne Wed 08-Jul-09 00:24:26

OP, I haven't been to my GP to ask abut swine flu yet but I was told I needed three months to recover from chemo (lots of it). My basic immune response was adequate for normal life after about a month.

It's now three months and a week since I finished my chemo and I am remarkably much better in the last fortnight. I would now describe myself as "well" but not yet "fit".

I still need surgery. From that POV I'm not well enough until six months after.

I imagine it depends how well your child is. Have you ring your GP and asked them what they think?

Lisa and pinotmonster, I hope things go well for your DHs. Normal is lovely.

listenglisten Thu 09-Jul-09 22:18:55

Thingone, thanks for your reply and great that you are feeling much better.

I spoke to the consultants secretary and via her asked if dd's immune system could be considered 'normal' now. Answer came back that yes it should be which is reassuring.

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