I go for blood tests once a week to see how my blood counts are doing, and yesterday was not a good result. My platelet level, which help the blood clot, was at 8 (normal person 25-30), and this is the lowest level they have ever been. I saw my Hematologist today, and we have decided on treatment due to my bone marrow failing, and the aplastic anemia gaining the upper hand.
I will be going in for the ATGAM treatment either the end of this week or the beginning of next week. To put the treatment in basic terms, my whole immune system will be killed right off. The whole system is then rebooted with steroids and cyclosporin which will restore the bone marrow to where it can produce the anti bodies, blood cells and platelets that are required for me to function normally.
I will have a Pic line (Peripherally inserted central catheter) inserted sometime this week to help facilitate the administering of the horse serum that is used in the treatment. I will be receiving whole blood , platelets liquid benydryl, and the actual ATGAM through the picc line. Steroids will be administered during the treatment, and as in 2005, I can look forward to gaining massive amounts of weight in the space of mere hours. In 2005, I gained 70 pounds within’ a 24 hour period due to water retention, putting great strain on all my joints and muscles.
I had this treatment in 2005, and it is not a pleasant experience, due to my immune system not being to fight anything off for a period of time. Vomiting, massive cold sores, and canker sores plus constant fatigue are what awaits me both during and after the treatment. I also get to look forward to a huge increase in weight, muscles and joint paint, swollen joints and constant mood swings due to the steroids that are part of the treatment.
I will be in isolation for 1 week straight, with a 4-6 month recovery period afterwards, but will attempt to continue to blog Living Like A Boss as well as update my Facebook Page . If all else fails, I can be followed on Twitter at @Geof_Smith
More updates to follow as the week progresses.
- Time To Get Serious – Aplastic Anemia Rear’s It’s Head (morbium.wordpress.com)
- Goodbye Immune System, you did your best. (jean2192.wordpress.com)
- Bone-Marrow Diseases and Anemia (everydayhealth.com)