Actually, my local Dr. told me that the only risk for caregivers would be if their immune system was already compromised. He also liked the idea that I wasn't to see my very young grandbaby until the day AFTER treatment.
There are times though, when you got to do what you got to do...with great care...
Age - 55
T1 G3 - Tumor free 2 yrs 3 months
Dx January 2006
Thank you, Chris, for your reply. The reason I asked was that I had a rt medial pulmonary lobectomy for lung cancer in 2003. My 81 yr old dad has come to live with me while he undergoes treatment for bladder cancer. He is very feeble and needs help with toileting. I also have a 15 yr old daughter who was recently diagnosed with mononucleosis. Dad's doctor has decided to use mitomycin instead of BCG, since his tumors are occupying the majority of his bladder. So, I guess my question is mute. The information you provided is good and I do appreciate your taking time to answer me.
I'm not a doctor, but from what I understand the only exposure you need to worry about would be from the actual urine discharge for up to 8 hours after BCG instillation into the bladder. Most seem to recommend pouring bleach into the toilet for up to 8 hours after BCG therapy and using disposable rubber gloves. I myself (while going through BCG therapy) made sure I had a restroom I did not share with anyone else for 12 hours or so, kept it locked (so no children could be exposed or the dog couldn't drink out of the toilet), and made sure I wiped it down with clorox bleach and made sure to add bleach into the toilet for 15 minutes before flushing to kill off any residual BCG.
The guidelines I have seen also restrict sexual intercourse with someone who has had BCG therapy for 48 hours and suggest using a condom for the duration of BCG treatment and up to a month after.
Its mostly all just precautionary and I do not think the risk of infecting others is too great, but better safe than sorry. I mean us patients are being exposed by having the stuff poured and retained into our bladder for two hours and its very rare that the patient ends up getting an infection from BCG.
Diagnosed T1G3 - 3/01/06
37 yo, Seattle, WA
Does anyone know if there are any risks to the caregivers of a patient receiving BCG immunotherapy for bladder cancer? Should a caregiver who has had a lobectomy for lung cancer be caring for a family member who is receiving BCG for bladder cancer?