Thursday, May 24, 2007

Some Test Results

Ben's bone marrow biopsy last week showed that 50% of the cells in his bone marrow were cancerous blast cells. This is a significant reduction from 95% the last time the marrow was biopsied, and even better in that there are fewer cells overall. What this means is that Ben is doing OK -- he is not having spectaluar progress, but it is still within the normal range as treatment goes. He will have another biopsy and more Vincristine (chemo) tomorrow. No spinal tap tomorrow.

Blood tests today showed that Ben's platelets and hemoglobin were good, but his white blood cell count is down quite a bit. So we need to be very careful about infection -- this is why we have bottles of Purell hand sanitizer all over the house and insist that people clean their hands with it before they enter.

We did not get fibrinogen results yet today. Fibrinogen is a protein made in the liver which assists in blood clotting. Many of you know that David was diagnosed two years ago with hypofibrinogenemia, an extremely rare genetic liver disorder. Basically David's liver does not produce enough fibrinogen or it gets stuck in his liver. Ben's fibrinogen counts have been low, but we do not believe he has what David has -- it is a normal side effect of chemotherapy. If it is low, he will need a tranfusion of a blood product called cryoprecipitate. He'll get that tomorrow if he needs it.

The other kid we met in the playroom today, Kieran, is about a year older than Ben. They had a great time playing MarioKart on one of the Fun Centers in the playroom. It is really nice for Ben to be able to meet other kids with cancer.

OK, I think that's about it. Big day tomorrow. Ben can't eat after midnight, which will be hard since he's been eating like a horse.

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