Ever since our first discharge, the oncologists always said, “you’re likely going to be back here with a fever before your next round.” Robbie would grin and assure them that was not the case.
Well, he got away with it the firs two rounds, but this time it got him.
Robbie woke up with a fever Thursday, midway between rounds three and four. In fact, he started the day at 102.4 so we had to take him to the ER. A fever means automatic admittance and he has to remain fever-free for 48 hours before release.
Once a bed space was cleared for him, we returned to 7-West, and his favorite nurse, Jess, won the tussle over which nurse got him. She was being shadowed by a student nurse who mentioned to us her surprise at how the nurses all wanted him as a patient. Given space considerations, he wound up down the hall in the ICU. However, his fever spiked to 105, his blood pressure dropped dangerously low and it was clear he has an infection. He was officially transferred to ICU care to help him.
Things are more under control, the fever is down and the blood pressure has improved thanks to dopamine. He received platelets Thursday and two units of red blood cells on Friday (which he was scheduled to receive anyway).
After spending Thursday and Friday sleeping most of the time, this morning he was awake and alert.
The oncologists are pleased that things are better, saying his color looks improved and things are headed in the right direction. His first blood cultures showed an infection and subsequent ones have not grown anything so the antibiotics work.
Everyone has made it clear that this is totally normal during treatment and that he got this far without a fever is rather excellent. He’s tired but his spirits remain positive.
His 7-West nurses have visited and keep asking after him, looking forward to his coming off the dopamine and a return to their care until release.