Running head: A REVIEW OF POLICY A Review 2may go unnoticed longer because of a lack of dysuria, which is a normal symptom. In many patients with neutropenia and infection, the only sign will be a fever, which may not be pronounced
(Coughlan & Healy, 2008).
In fact, severe neutropenia is a very real threat that cancause even death. Approximately 70%-75% of deaths from acute leukemia and 50% of deaths in patients with solid tumors are related to infection secondary to neutropenia (Larson & Nirenberg,2004). Commonly a chart is used to explain the varying degrees of neutropenia. CRMC uses thefollowing chart which agrees with the literature:ANC Risk for infection> 2000 not significant1,500 – 1,900 minimal1,400 – 1,000 moderate900 – 500 severe< 500 life-threateningBecause of the high risk of infection in a patient with neutropenia, there are far-reaching long-term effects of the lifestyle of the patient. First of all they must deal with the direct side effectsof neutropenia itself. The patient with neutropenia is susceptible to getting infected from their own normal body flora. They are also predisposed to getting infection from other normally non-threatening situations that people with a normal white blood cell count don’t have to worry about(Lewis et al., 2007). In order to avoid severe neutropenia, physicians are often forced to delay or reduce chemotherapy doses which in turn affect patient outcomes. The need for delaying patienttreatment adds anxiety and lowers their quality of life as their treatment course is lengthened(Nirenberg, Bush, Davis, Friese, & Gillespie, 2006). Required vigilance to avoid infection,crowds, certain foods, and constantly watch for mouth and skin sores can decrease the patient’swillingness to continue treatment. They may feel they have a lowered general quality of life because of the need to lower the risk of life threatening infections, but good education and hopethat these interventions will work in the end can give them encouragement.