Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Life on drugs.
I've been meaning to post this picture for awhile -- mostly just to document for ourselves how crazy life has become. Taking pills has never been Andrew's thing. Other than Rolaids, and the occasional allergy relief, he's always been pretty averse to taking anything. This is an aspect of treatment he really detests -- it's a whole different ball game. The drugs above are medicines Andrew now takes daily. Daily -- all of them! He has to take anti-virals, anti-fungals, kidney protection, heart protection, eye drops, ear drops, steroids, blood cell production injections. This doesn't include all the anti-nausea drugs and other things he's given during each hospital stay. Now that we may be done with the hospital, I'm afraid we'll have to add them to the daily regimen.
I'm a fairly organized person, but it's not easy keeping these all straight -- which ones to take once a day, which ones are twice, or four times. This one goes for five days post each chemo, this one for seven days post chemo. Not to mention the many, many trips to the pharmacist for refills. Incidentally, the costs of these drugs would floor you -- a bottle of acyclovir is $100, a single injection of neupogen costs $500. Neupogen has to be taken for 7 days following each chemo round -- the doctor has been fighting with our insurance to allow us to get a single injection that can be done in her office called neulasta, but they keep refusing, so I can only imagine it must be even more expensive than the neupogen. It's a really insane schedule of drugs, and very easy to see how patients can fail to take all their meds correctly. We've forgotten a few doses here and there, simply because with the sheer number of pills, we couldn't remember if he had taken something already. I can't imagine how elderly people manage, unless they have someone helping them keep it all straight. I should have made a big chart with dosages and days, and made check marks for each dose taken. Oh well -- an idea that hopefully we'll never have to use...