Better Numbers and a “Boost”
The Bone Marrow Transplant recovery process is a game of numbers involving blood’s basic components:
- White Blood Cells: the core of your immune system
- Hemoglobin: red blood cells that carry oxygen throughout your body
- Platelets: instrumental in blood clotting.
At the beginning of my post-hospital recovery, I was getting both platelets and blood, because my numbers indicated I didn’t have enough of either (we’re talking post-operative numbers, not compared to your average citizen numbers).
The “game” is to grow these numbers — not yet to normal levels, but to levels that give you the energy and protection to get through the day.
My white blood cells hover around a 2.0. Not great, but these are often the last to grow.
My hemoglobin has been in the 8+ range for ten days now, so as of this Friday I will have gone 13 days without a blood transfusion (Less than 7.0 guarantees one, and I’ve stayed above 8).
And platelets are around 60, and 100 is the low end of human normal, so that’s showing a positive trend.
Last Thursday I had a “boost”, an extra transfusion of donor cells “cleaned up” to take out any aberrations or characteristics the doctors deem negative. This boost itself — a small brownish bag of “stuff” took about 10 minutes but the prep, doctor approval, and post-patient watch for any negative reactions to the slurry took much longer.
All went well. It takes 2 weeks or so to see a response from the body, and I’m looking forward to any good news I can get!