Saturday, 5 December 2009

White Blood Counts

Today the Doctors showed me my white blood counts (WBC). I'm beginning to understand the terminology they use and what they are looking for.

When I was admitted my WBC was 24.0. The blood test splits this up into the different types of white blood cell. Good cells are Neurotrophiles, Lymphocytes and Monocytes and they should make up 98-99% of the white blood cells in your blood. What you don't want is blasts. Blasts are either immature blood cells that haven't differentiated into proper blood cells (normal in small amounts) or leukemia cells.

My 24.0 WBC broke down as follows:
Neutrophils - 1.7
Lymphocytes - 3.1
Monocytes - 0.5
Blasts - 18.2 (huge!!)

By day 3 of the chemo, my blasts were down to 6.8 and by this morning's test, they were down to an immeasurable amount. The doctor's say that this is excellent so am well pleased today! It suggests that I am responding well to the treatment, or rather - I am not not responding well.

Anyway, I still don't have many side effects other than fatigue and very dry skin so am still considering myself very lucky and touching wood a lot....

(written retrospectively)

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