Recovery – WBC Coming Up

July 20, 2011

My blood test on Monday showed that my WBC is finally on its way up. This was great news for me that really gave my spirits a lift; something that I’ve needed for a long time.  I had a feeling that things were changing because I have been feeling better inside; better than I have felt in a long time.  The overall WBC is 2.7 and the goal is to get that number to 3.5 (minimum).  The number that they look at is the neutrophils count.  This has to be above 1000 and mine was 1900.  When I was in the hospital it was around 600 to 700.  Last week it was 1400 so it’s coming up.

I am still anemic and the red blood count has dropped a bit further.  The anemia makes me very tired all of the time.  I thought that it was the medications that were making me fall asleep so often, but it is more likely due to the anemia.  I asked the doctor about this and he said that I should start to see this improve within the next two weeks or so.  My bone marrow hasn’t been regenerating as they had hoped but the last two blood tests indicate that this may have changed also.  The monos percentage indicates that the bone marrow is now being regenerated.  This is good news too.

I don’t have another blood test scheduled for two weeks so I have to wait until then to find out more of what is happening inside.  My next appointment with the oncologist is in a month.

My appetite isn’t that great.  You would think that I would be starving because I haven’t eaten anything other than instant breakfast for so long.  The problem is that my stomach has shrunk so much and the taste in my mouth is horrible, so food does not look or sound appealing.  I’ve been watching the Food Channel to try to get my appetite back.  Over the past few days I have tried eating things like yogurt and pudding.  Not having the saliva that you need for drier foods makes it difficult to eat anything that isn’t already totally moist. (Dang it, I fell asleep again while writing this. But now I’m back.)

This morning I ate some cereal. Although it was only 9 grams of cereal and 120 ml of milk, it was a good start.  After that, I made myself a strawberry yogurt smoothie with ice cream and ate the whole thing (even though the taste was disgusting). That was about 410 calories itself.  I’ve been trying to get my calorie intake up so I will gain weight.  I’ve must be doing a good job because I gained three pounds since my last doctor appointment.

I’ve been worried that I will not be able to eat. But little by little I will get back to eating and feeling normal.  I really want off of this feeding tube.  I found out that when they remove the feeding tube, they do it as an outpatient procedure with no sedation.  They snip the stitches and pull out the tube.  They don’t even stitch you up again.  Apparently the hole in the stomach closes up almost instantly. The hole on the outside closes slowly on its own.  I find this hard to believe and a little scary.  Nothing happens normally with me; hopefully there won’t be any complications when they do this.

Today’s verse:

Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? – Matthew 6:27 NIV

2 Responses to Recovery – WBC Coming Up

  1. irene says:

    Good news on your WBC!
    Get well soon!

  2. Diane says:

    Hey Charles,

    Things seem to be looking up. I can’t help but say, “It’s about time.” I’m so happy for you. This certainly has been a long haul and not an easy one at that. Keep going. I’m so proud of my son-in-law.

    Love, Diane

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