AML - chemo side effects/ infection?

My mother in her late 50s was diagnosed with AML a few months ago. So far she's had 2 rounds of chemo. The first went well, she recovered, was discharged for a couple of weeks before returning for the second round of treatment. Just before the 2nd treatment they said she'd gone in to full remission but would have up to another 3/4 rounds of chemo to ensure it doesn't come back. 

After the second round of treatment, she was again discharged but this time she came down with an infection. She went back to hospital and had fever, diarrhea, nausea. They said it was a picc line infection so they took this out. Its now week 3 and she is not herself and worse than I've seen her throughout this whole process.

She has slurred speech, is confused, her eyes are glassy and have a film in the edges, her face/lips are swollen, she's extremely fatigued, cant eat normal food. They have her on antibiotics and have been giving her blood transfusions, platelets etc. 

I'm wondering if this is normal for a chemo patient - can she recover from this state or will it only get worse? The doctors seem very unavailable to shed more light and don't go in to specifics. 

  • A very warm welcome to forum szb9 although I'm very sorry to hear about your mother.

    It must be very difficult to see her like this but I and the rest of the community are sending our support your way and will have our fingers crossed that everything the doctors are doing will help her in making a full recovery.

    As you can see on our website, chemo for AML can come with a range of side effects and some people can have more severe reactions than others, but if you'd like to discuss this further with one of our cancer nurses, you can do so on 0808 800 4040, Monday - Friday between 9a.m - 5p.m. They're very well informed and will do all they can to answer your questions and give you the reassurance you're seeking at this time.

    Hopefully some of our members who have been on this journey will be along soon to offer their thoughts and advice to you as well.

    Best wishes to you both,

    Steph, Cancer Chat Moderator

  • She really needs to see a doctor. This could be an allergic reaction to the antibiotics.