white blood cell booster???

Hi all , was wondering if anyone has been offered and given white blood cell booster. Am starting chemo monday and having white blood cell booster tuesday. Any thoughts comments or advice would be apreciated. Already stressing about chemo and cold cap. Help x

Hi Givli,
I had neulasta injections for 10 days after each chemo - don’t know if this is the same as you?
It is a painless process, my 18 year old daughter injected for me.
The side effects I had were joint and bone pain, but nothing a painkiller didnt sort.
The positives are that I had no problems with chemo at all.
Wishing you the best of luck for Monday.

I had neulasta injections too and the pain was manageable with codeine. Lots of hospitals seem to do this as routine after some types of chemo but not everyone and it’s also dependent on your blood test results too. It’s a useful insurance policy to help ward off the dangers of neutropenic sepsis. It doesn’t guarantee you won’t get it (it didn’t help me) but it does help reduce the risk.

My hospital insisted that the injections were administered by a district nurse even though I am more than qualified to do them myself, but this varies from hospital to hospital. It’s no big deal to either do it yourself or as Marguerite did have someone do it for you.

Best of luck for Monday!
Nymeria x

Hi Givli

I had the boosters for 5 days after chemo (was neutropenic on several occassions) injected myself its relatively painless and easily administered.

My advice is take one day at a time I know its frustrating (I’m a total control freak and its difficult not to plan to much ahead) but it really helped me to take small steps and keep things in perspective.

Listen to your body whilst on treatment and be good to yourself.

Good Luck xx

Hi Givli,

I’m having Nuelasta too.
The type I am having is given once every 3 week cycle, 24 hours after chemo so it might be the same as one as you will be having. It is very expensive so not everyone gets this type.
I inject it myself into my tummy with a pre prepared syringe. It’s no more painful than a blood test at the time though my hips do ache for a few days afterwards. Not enough to need painkillers though.
So far it seems to be doing its job as I’ve had no problems with my white count as yet…
Best of luck,
Kate x

Hi girls, thankyou so much for your comments. I didnt know you could inject youtself with Nuelasta ( have learnt a knew word today ) though onc nurse did say district nurses would be visiting to give injection. Maybe its worth speaking to her about doing it myself , it would save time for district nurses ( though would be a shame not to see them as they are so lovley ) and free me to go and do normal stuff the day after chemo if i feel up to it.
onc nurse did mention about achey joints but when you are being told so much you dont always take it in and i thought that it was the chemo that would be to blame . If I did hear her correctly its one dose 24hrs after chemo.
I get the feeling that i am one of the lucky few as not only being given nuelasta but the much raved about Emend and to top it off complimentary therapy on referral to boot.
I think my oncologist will be expecting to see me to do cartwheels down the ward lol (watch this space)
Two days to go and counting , just need to go and buy hair conditioner that i will never use again after chemo.
Wish i could be kind to myself and have a red wine tonight but am on antibiotics so will have to settle for big bar of chocolate.

thanks again girls you have all given me a boost with your good wishes alone xx

Hi givli,

I had the single dose Neulasta as well - it costs over £600 per jab! The district nurse came to give mine. I think that’s more common with the single dose one just because it’s so expensive if you do it wrong! It will almost certainly cause pain in your bones, you feel all achy as if you’ve got flu.

Make sure you’ve got plenty of ibuprofen and codeine in. I don’t know if you’ve been told yet but you should try to avoid taking paracetamol when on chemo as it brings down high temperatures so could mask signs of infection. I was told if I want to take paracetamol I had to take my temperature first and only take the paracetamol if my temperature was normal, and even then only take the minimum dose and to avoid it completely if all possible.

I had Neulasta for four out of my six chemo cycles and twice I was very achy and twice not so bad, so it was quite variable. It worked very well for me though so I really hope it does for you too - good luck!

Jane xxx

Hi Alto
wow , didnt know it cost that much, i definatley feel looked after.
Great tip about the paracetemol, wasnt aware you couldnt take with chemo, will stock up with ibuprofen this wkend and talk to dist nurse nxt wk for prescription.
Its great that there is so much help out there to ease the distress and discomfort of treatment but cant help feeling a little annoyed and upset for those who are not offered and dont get what is obviously beneficial. So sad that its down to money as usual. xx

True givli, and if you read any of the American forums they can often really struggle to get Neulasta as the insurance companies don’t like paying for it. I think I saw a figure of 2,000 quoted for it somewhere!

Jane xxx

My chemo nurse spotted the price of my Nuelasta while in the pharmacy - £875!!!
K x

No wonder they like the district nurse to give it!

Jane xxx

Hi Givli. I inject myself the day after chemo. The District nurse came the first time and showed me how to do it. Easy. Tip from nurse friends is to pinch your tummy (not so’s it hurts) and put the injection in to the fold you’ve got. I haven’t felt it going in, doing that. I also haven’t had any aches or side effects from it or need for ibuprofen… we’re all different… I asked the DN to come out first time for confidence really, and to feel that someone was checking up on me the day after my first treatment… after that I’ve not needed her. I’d no idea it was so expensive! Jane

Hi all,
Getting a little worried now. It seems price of neulasta varys from area to area. I have all my treatment done in a different area to where i live ( surgery and chemo ). They are the ones that are giving me all the expensive and it seems selective drugs to ease chemo symptoms. They also gave me the best options for surgery and i believe the best results. However I am being refered back to my own surgery for treatment with district nurse and they are in a different nhs trust who are known to spend as little as possible if they can get away with it. My worry would be if they refuse to give the neulista because of where we are. I can only hope that is not the case. More questions for onc nurse on monday. fingers crossed for the next two days i suppose xx

It’s a lot of money for one little 6ml syringe but I’d rather have that than one a day for a week or so! The active stuff is pegfilgrastim rather than the filgrastim that’s in the daily ones and apparently it stays in your body for longer so only needs giving once per cycle.

I wouldn’t worry givli, if it’s anything like my hopsital you’ll be given all your post-chemo drugs including the neulasta in a bag at your chemo centre (the nurses gave me mine while I was having chemo but I think in some hospitals you have to go to the hospital pharmacy before you go home). Sometimes it was a paper bag, other times a carrier bag depending on what I had. I did wonder if one day I’d need a suitcase to get them all home but it never quite got that far!

The neulasta syringe was with the other drugs and I had to take it home and put it in the fridge until the next day. All the district nurse did was actually administer the jab.

Anyway, if you’ve been prescribed a drug by your onc I wouldn’t think it was up to anyone else to refuse to fill the prescription. If there’s going to be a problem it would be in actually getting prescribed it in the first place.


thanks for that jane, wil go and dust off suitcase now. Roll on august when this stage behind me. x

Hi Givli,

I agree with Alto, if your onc prescribed you neulasta then hopefully you woudn`t have problems getting it.

Like GIJane I also get the one day injection type and I have been administering it myself from day one. I had some training in sc injections so my onc was happy for me to administer it myself. I had my FEC2 on Wednesday and all my blood counts were good. I also didnt get any pains or aches at all so far, so didnt need to take any painkillers.

Good luck with all,


I’ve had filgrastim (also known as ratiograstim)for every cycle, 7 pre-loaded injection from the day after the chemo. At the end of the week on it after my first chemo dose I had a bad lower back pain which I was later told was due to the injections sending my bone marrow in overdrive. I got a slight fever twice but I have 3 year old twins who have been ill throughout the first two cycles and I’ve been OK, so perhaps they do help.
I inject myself, I am used to it as I had to inject for IVF. The needle is tiny so it’s painless when it goes in, the fluid can be a bit dense because they’re kept in the fridge but it’s a very slight discomfort only when it goes in. Initially my husband was doing the injections but I find it easier to do them myself now.

Posted for new user Alison
Jo, Facilitator

Hi there Barbwill, sorry to hear about your discomfort. I too have had a course of 6 filigram (?) but this was as an alternative to the one large dose I had to inject the day after treatment, because it caused me to swell up everywhere and make my skin too sore to even touch. The 6 injections though were to be given 5 days into the cycle, and I found that taking them out of the fridge half an hour before injecting helped. Only bruised myself once. glad to hear you’re feeling better today. Ali