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Old Wed Mar 16, 2011, 09:12 AM
kgtuck kgtuck is offline
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Location: Sylva & recently Waynesville, North Carolina USA
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Question Flu shot or not?

My doctor has advised me to get a flu shot; I had put this off last fall and winter and she is advising me to go ahead and get one even tho the flu season is almost over. Have you had flu shots and any side effects due to this disease?
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66 yr female;diag 6/09; MDS, unspecified, normal cytogenetics: blasts 10%; successful Dacogen;every 4th wk.; as of Aug.'12 changing to every 5th wk., stable at Hgb 12-14/platelets 200-300/wbc 2.-3.
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Old Wed Mar 16, 2011, 10:54 AM
tytd tytd is offline
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flu shot

Hello kgtuck,
I got a flu shot this year which also protects against the "swine" flu strain. I always worry about any medication or vaccines since I have such a low platelet count. However, I had no problem with the flu shot. I would highly recommend it especially since you have low white counts. I also would consider getting the Pneumovax vaccine which protects against pneumococcal pneumonia. It is usually given starting at age 65 but is recommended earlier in certain younger people at risk. Just be sure and get the flu shot which is inactivated and not the nasal flu vaccine which is live.
I had a few questions for you concerning your treatment with Dacogen. One was why your doctor chose Dacogen over Vidaza? The other was what happened to your blood counts during the first few cycles of Dacogen since you began with such low counts? Did your platelets drop a lot initially and did you have to get many platelet transfusions? Have you been given any growth factors like Procrit, Aranesp or Neupogen while you have been on Dacogen. Thanks for the information and I hope you will continue to do well. Tytd
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possible low to int-1 MDS with predominant thrombocytopenia, mild anemia, dx 7/08, in watch and wait mode
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Old Wed Mar 16, 2011, 11:31 AM
kgtuck kgtuck is offline
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Thanx for the "flu shot" info

Thanx for your advice--I'm going down to get a shot today! From all the things I've read, there were more responses to get one than not!
In answer to you questions re: dacogen; I think they chose that drug because my doctor's group (in Asheville, NC) had had such success with it and I had no chromosome defects and completely healthy otherwise.

Began dacogen when first diagnosed in june '09; was very sick 1st 2-3 months with low counts of 7 hgb; 15-20 platelets; 1 wbc; 5 blood & 6 platelet transfusions; after second round of dacogen nos. began creeping up and jumped WAY up after the 3rd round. The nurse explained that it usually takes 2-3 or maybe more in some patient to get enough of the drug in your system to show improvement. I've had completely stable counts (except for my white count which varies from 2-3.8) for about 22 months now. And no transfusions since that 3rd round of dacogen. (P.S. Yes, I did have the have a few Procrit shots during those first couple months). Also,relatively no side effects!

Thanx for your comments. Take care (where are you in the southeast?)
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66 yr female;diag 6/09; MDS, unspecified, normal cytogenetics: blasts 10%; successful Dacogen;every 4th wk.; as of Aug.'12 changing to every 5th wk., stable at Hgb 12-14/platelets 200-300/wbc 2.-3.
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Old Wed Mar 16, 2011, 11:39 AM
Neil Cuadra Neil Cuadra is offline
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Here are some flu shot discussions from past years that I think you'll find informative:
Flu vaccination, Yes or No?

Flu Shots

Flu Shot Information for Patients
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