Day +12 – the doctor came into George’s room and told him she was happy to see that his white blood cell counts were slowly going up! She said he was where they had hoped he would be at this point in his recovery. Whaat?? That’s fantastic news! I took it as a sign that his new donor stem cells had engrafted and were starting to produce blood cells. Then I remembered he had a blood transfusion recently and asked George if his increased white blood cell count could be a result of that, and he said the nurse told him she didn’t think it was from the transfusion. So…we are cautiously optimistic! He also said his mouth still hurts, but not as much… his throat still hurts, though.
White blood cell counts:
- July 18 – <.1
- July 19 – .1
- July 20 – .3
Normal counts fall between 4 – 11. Baby steps!
Also, his absolute neutrophil count (ANC) has gone from zero to 10! The neutrophil is the most important infection- fighting white blood cell. The normal range is 2,500 – 6,000, but I think George can be discharged once his count reaches >500.
Somehow….I don’t know how…I forgot to mention that during this recovery, George has also been receiving a chemotherapy called methotrexate. This cancer drug works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells and suppressing the immune system (essential to prevent graft versus host disease. He wasn’t receiving it every day, but once every few days. He had his last dose on day +11. Many people have probably heard of the drug because it is used in the medical abortion pill and some state abortion bans are restricting access to it. It’s also used for rheumatoid arthritis. I can’t imagine being refused this important, life saving medication on the off chance that I might use it to induce abortion (looking at you, Missouri). A country gone mad. Anyway, we were worried that the methotrexate might kill any new cell growth, but what do we know? We are trying to just accept any progress and rejoice in it!
Also, have I mentioned how cool the door to George’s hospital room is!? I don’t think so! This hospital is new and so cutting edge! He can control his privacy level from the remote control at his bed….watch this:
I didn’t get to visit George on day +12 because our dog, Chloe had an appointment to get her teeth cleaned. But I will be going today…day lucky +13 and will be hoping for more good news!
Thanks so much for following along, for supporting George throughout his journey, for your prayers and gifts and cards. They have meant everything.