Poking ‘Dem Bones

Howdy! Welcome to another installment of updates with my AML. Let’s get right to it:

Today I went into Presby to get blood work done, and my “full” bone marrow biopsy. We had on the books 2 biopsies of pre-chemo marrow, 1 biopsy of empty marrow, and this would be the biopsy that shows us how the marrow looks when its full.

First things first, my blood is still showing improvements. My hemoglobin was 11.1 (+1.1 from last week), my white blood cell count was 3.5 (-0.2 since last week (normal)), and my platelets were up to 190,000 (+130,000!). So one of my numbers has actually recovered into the range of “normal”. That makes me want to hop on the bike and do some back road biking outside. It’s still so hot that I might not, but considering after the 19th, I’m not going to be able to work out outside for a few months…I might just have to.

Second, I’ve been showing some symptoms of either the chemo, or the inactivity. I’ve been short of breath for the last few days, and I’ve been getting a little dizzy/light headed again. I asked the doctors, and they said my heart and lungs sound fine, my numbers are fine, and everything should be good. Worst case, if it persists, when I get admitted next week, they’ll do a cat scan on my chest just to check and make sure.

Third, with all my numbers up and looking good, the biopsy was a go. I got a PA named Maurine, and she was an absolute pro. Great at distracting chit chat – I actually didn’t even notice one of the drill/draw procedures. She also got through my bone the fastest that *anyone* has been able to do, so that was nice.

I think, partly due to the speed, perhaps, or maybe I’m just feeling overall better so I noticed more, but this biopsy was much more painful once the lidocaine wore off. Eh, I’ll take a pain free and fast procedure, with some residual soreness, over a painful both any time.

Next Up

I have a second opinion consult over at Memorial Sloan/Kettering. They’re going to confirm that everything we’re doing over at Presby is the same stuff we’d be doing anywhere else.

Then I go in for round 1 of consolidation chemo on the 19th. While there, the transplant team over at Presby will talk to me about my options with that, and if there’s any new news that might sway my opinions one way or the other. After that talk, we go see the purple haired Dr. Barker (Edit: Forgot an R) back at Sloan, and double check all the transplant stuff.

Then, I wait for my numbers to recover, and then decision time.


  1. Aunt Marge · · Reply

    Well now I know where to go and stop asking your Mother tons of questions! One question for you I have a lot of friends that would like to donate bone marrow for you. What do they do?
    PS – I’m never sure when posting things where it will go – hoping I’m doing this right! Oh yeah – PS I love you Godson xxx

    1. Haha, you did fine. If your friends want to donate marrow to just me, I would say, probably skip it. If they want to donate in general, which would be awesome, have them look up their zip code on bethematch.org. That will tell them where the nearest and soonest bone marrow donation drive is happening. All they have to do is fill out some paperwork and get their cheeks swabbed. That’s it! 🙂

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