It's been two more weeks and more tests. Last Week at M.D. Anderson (week #9 since no TKI results):
ANC = 0.86 Today ANC = 0.91
Everything else normal especially platelets - no change. ANC is still rising as if I had a stem cell transplant. Painfully slow.
M.D. Anderson took more blood to re-verify my zero FISH and PCR. PCR came back 20 points (percentage) lower than the last time M.D. Anderson tested my blood (back in December). FISH is not back yet - and I am very very curious about that.
So because my ANC is still below 1.0 after 2 1/2 months, I still have to stay off Sprycel. I have no idea what my body is doing - it just seems to be in some sort of steady state. Not progressing not getting better (except for the FISH result). Whatever leukemic cells produce (bcr-abl transcripts) is still very much showing up. It's just not growing.
I feel fine. It's great to be off meds and great to feel "normal". I just wonder what our bodies were doing prior to diagnosis? I can tell that living with 35% PCR does not have any illness effect. Maybe when it gets above 50%, that's when the body starts to get sick (i.e. WBC's dramatically climb)? What is the body doing to keep it steady like this without any drug?
I am tempted to get back on Sprycel even with ANC = 0.91 on the belief that I have a lot of healthly cells now and that the myelosuppression won't be as bad this time around. I strongly believe that when I take Sprycel - my version of CML - my higher order Leukemic cells can't stand it and die off quickly. The last time this happened, I had no good cells and whammo - severe dangerous myelosuppression. But now - I think I have a healthier population in reserve. The data is the data.