Monday, November 9, 2015

November 9, 2015 Wait and see


BJ's fever broke during the night. He's feeling pretty good today. He looks good too. His hemoglobin and platelet counts remained above transfusion thresholds today. He'll stay inpatient again tonight, and if he doesn't have another fever, he will be discharged tomorrow.

The waiting is torture for both of us, and with today's labs showing 54% blasts, it's been even more torture. With only 800 white blood cells, 54% isn't that many leukemia cells. It's not like it was when he had 43k WBC, and 82% (35,260) of those were leukemia. Still...when you see 54% in that column, it punches the panic button. So at 0430 this morning, my panic alarm sounded and thankfully, BJ's nurse for the last 2 nights was a hugging, praying, go find the tissues kind of nurse. More time spent waiting to hear from the doctor, just to be told that we have to wait and see, the cells haven't had time to complete their job.

There is one lab that has been clinically shown to be a good indicator of the cytokine release, and that is C-Reactive Protein (CRP). Seeing that this lab value has increased 10-fold over the past 3 days is comforting. It helps to have something tangible like that lab value, when the fever drop wasn't what we were expecting, and the directive is to wait and see. We know we have to wait. We know there's no quick answer with this therapy. Tell that to the kid who knows what's going on inside him, and to his mom who would give her last breath to save him. It's easy for them to say, and honestly, I would bet that they wouldn't be so casual or patient if it were their own child in this predicament. Being in the waiting period of this is hard. Every season of this has been hard. I know that God is working, even though I get caught up in the crashing waves of it all, and sometimes feel so overwhelmed and so beaten. It's friends, and caring strangers, who I am sure, that at just the right time feels a nudging, or a quiet whisper, and through them, God provides just what we need, exactly when we need it.

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