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Persistent Fever on Taxol

jessb727 Member Posts: 2

Hi all, first time poster here.

I’m having neoadjuvent chemo, finished AC on 2/9 and started weekly Taxol and Herceptin/Perjeta every 3 weeks on 2/23. Two days my 3/2 Taxol infusion, I started having chills (didn’t experience this after the 2/23 infusion). I checked my temp and it was normal, but was also taking ibuprofen for the bone pain/aches.

The chills persisted for two days but no fever, then I spiked a fever of 100.5. I called the on call and they told me to come in. I’ve been admitted since then (three days ago), but the docs can’t figure out what’s causing the fever, which hasnt gone down without the help of Tylenol, and has gone as high as 101.5. They have me on a broad spectrum antibiotic but I still have the fever.

I only have fever and chills - there are no localized symptoms indicating where an infection would be. They have done cultures and other tests and so far none have shown anything.

Has anyone else experienced anything like this?It’s frustrating being here without any progress so any thoughts/experiences would be appreciated!


  • BellasMomToo
    BellasMomToo Member Posts: 93
    edited March 2018

    I had taxotere & carboplatin every 3 weeks. About 5 days after my 1st infusion, I developed a fever of 100.5+. So I called the MOs office. They had me go to the hospital for blood test, urine test, and a chest xray and put me on antibiotics for 7 days. My fever went away after a few days and all the test were negative. I developed fevers after each infusion (total of 6) that would last 2 - 3 days. (I'm bad though -- I didn't bother calling the MOs office cause I knew that the fevers would go away and I didn't want to have to go in for tests each time. I would tell my MO about the fevers at my follow-ups, and I would get scolded, but she admitted that's probably how my body responded to chemo.)

    After my 6th and final chemo, I had two bouts of chills. I shivered uncontrollably and my teeth chattered. Each lasted exactly 30 minutes.

    I'm 13 months PFC. My body temperature is rarely normal (98.6). My 'normal' body temp is about 97.5. And I get low grade fevers (99 to 100) for no reason. Sometimes they last for as long 5 days, other times just one day.

    So perhaps your fevers are just your body's response to chemo.

  • jessb727
    jessb727 Member Posts: 2
    edited March 2018

    Thanks for the response, we finally have an answer and I was released from the hospital today. It turns out mine was more than just a fever - it was pneumonitis caused by Taxol. Here’s a summary of what happened for those who are experiencing something similar now or in the future.

    I had a lot of blood cultures (from arms and port) urine cultures, vaginal cultures, flu exam, and a viral blood work up that all came back negative. They also started me on two broad spectrum antibiotics that I did not respond to.

    Then they decided to do a CT scan of chest, abdomen and pelvis to see if they could pin point something because the fevers kept coming back. They saw “ground glass opacities” on my lungs and I had a bronchoscopy to confirm inflammation not infection. All cultures from the bronchoscopy came back negative, and I was given steroids which I finally responded to. I didnt have any lung symptoms upon admission and only later in my stay started getting a very mild dry cough.

    Problem is now my MO and pulmonologist say it’s too dangerous to continue the Taxol. My MO is going to look into whether starting Taxotere may be an option, but it could be taxanes in general that are causing the inflammation in my lungs.

    So I’m nervous about the impact of pausing/stopping treatment, but definitely glad to be home from the hospital and that my condition didn’t worsen before we figured it out (apparently some folks end up in ICU or worse with this).

  • JudyJetson
    JudyJetson Member Posts: 2
    edited March 2018

    I've completed 4 doses of AC chemo and am on Taxol and carboplatin every week now. I've had my 4th dose of these. I've been getting persistent low grade fevers of 99 to 100 off and on over the past few weeks, since just before starting the Taxol and Carboplatin. I've been on broad spectrum antibiotics which seemed to help, but this last week, nothing's helped and it's been accompanied by chills and total exhaustion, meaning that I just want to lay around and get tired from just standing for too long. My white cells were low this past week. My oncologist has been giving me Granix shots and my white cells came up last Friday, and I thought I was getting better over the weekend, but I got another 99 temp and chills tonight. I haven't had chemo for 11 days, so it's not likely the chemo. My white cells should still be up, since they were measured high on Friday. My nose is running and stuffy, but it's been that way for 3 weeks, and doesn't seem to respond to claritin, benadryl, neti pots, or the antibiotics. I don't have symptoms of any other infection. I've tested negative for flu. I was going to get admitted to the hospital when my white counts were low last week, but they came up, and then my PA said that I wouldn't get admitted and my low grade temperatures are not high enough to indicate that I've got an infection. In the meantime, I'm just exhausted, feverish and have chills off and on. Not sure what to do at this point about that. I'm hoping that they can figure this out, and keep my white cells up enough to continue with the chemo next week, because I don't want to miss 2 weeks of treatment.

  • SanJF
    SanJF Member Posts: 47
    edited May 2019

    Hi Jess does the temperature settled down?

    Facing same what tests are needed to rule out for infection God forbid:(