Does anyone know the usual prognosis for AML? I have a very nice pt w/ this, he's only 45. I wig out a bit, accessing his port when his WBC count is only 0.9! I'm sooo scared that anything less than perfection in my sterile technique will result in death for him. He's also going to a gun show this weekend & I lectured him about avoiding crowds. I feel like if he dies it's my fault. It's hard to face this, someone with a wife & kids, a life, who's a good person shouldn't die from going into a crowd. Sometimes this profession is too heavy. Thanks for letting me fret & vent!
Mar 31, '07
I cut & pasted this from the MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia here:
Complete remission occurs in 70 - 80% of patients. Overall, about 33% of persons under age 65 survive free of disease at 5 years from diagnosis. This 5-year survival rate drops dramatically (4%) in those older than 65. In general, patients who are younger have a better chance of survival than older patients. This is partly due to one's ability to tolerate the strong chemotherapy medicines.
Patients who have not experienced a relapse during these 5 years are considered permanently cured, since most relapses occur within 2 years of diagnosis.
Without treatment, life expectancy is about 3 - 4 months.
Good luck with your patient. It sounds like he is getting excellent care and treatment.
Last edit by abooker on Mar 31, '07
: Reason: typo
Mar 31, '07
I don't know the particulars about his condition or where he stands as far as the course of his treatment, but it makes one wonder if this pt truly understands his condition or if, perhaps, he is in some sort of denial, if the picture is as dire as you paint it. I realize that some people might say that they don't want to let the disease run their lives. They want to keep on going, living their lives as they always have. But come on!, a gun show? V.S. staying home with my family, avoiding crowds (to reduce the risk of infection). Where are his priorities? In my book, my family would come first. I would want to stay as healthy as I could to lick this thing. The previous post/ link seems to indicate that the odds are in his favor, being as young as he is. There will be other gun shows, many more, in fact, if he remains healthy. Is this his business/ livelihood? I don't know, there's something just not quite right about this picture.
As far as how you feel, just think of this: It's always a pt's prerogative to refuse treatment/ medical advice. I agree, it's sad to see someone seemingly throwing their life away, but... if you have explained the risks (and I'm sure his doc has gone over this with him, too) and he still wants to go, you have to respect that. He's a big boy and your not his mother (in response to lecturing him about crowds). Given the proper info -which you have done, he can make his own decisions, but the consequences are his to answer for if something bad happens and not you. Hope this doesn't sound callus. good luck and God Bless (both of you).
Last edit by Wave on Mar 31, '07