As many of you know, I have been unable to get back on Sprycel due to myelosuppression. Since late January my ANC was crushed to 0.1 (after just two weeks of Sprycel) has been climbing back to near 1.0 ever since. I have plateaued around 0.86 (very constant).
The thinking is that the Curcumin I have been taking (500 mg) is keeping the Leukemia from expanding, but nothing else. I have decided to increase my Curcumin intake from 500 mg to 8 grams per day as per what I have been reading. I am currently up to six grams a day. In a few more days I should be at the therapeutic dose of 8 grams. Supposedly at this dose this is where Curcumin's effect will be most pronounced. We'll see.
My goal is to stay on Curcumin at this does for 3 months and then have a PCR taken. Also - if my PCR shows a marked drop (big anticipation), I will add 20 mg. Sprycel per day to begin the process of finally getting at the PH+ chromosome with a TKI. For whatever reason I am living with a high Ph+ chromosome in my bone marrow which does not make it out into my circulating blood (zero FISH). ? very interesting. And my white blood cells, although 'depressed' are maintaining a constant level.
It is my thinking that if I can keep the pressure on the Leukemia - then I may be able to overcome myelosuppression and finally start a process of using a TKI to get at the Ph+ better. Curcumin, from what I read, kills the CML cells by downregulating the cells activity and causing apoptosis.
Also - Curcumin is natural and beneficial to the body (strong anti-oxidant). There are zero side affects (that I have experienced or documented) and it has been proven safe upwards of 12 grams per day. There are no studies evaluating Curcumin + Sprycel for CML, but there are studies showing tremendous effacacy with Curcumin + Sprycel for Colon cancer. At my current six grams, I feel no different. I take it on an empty stomach with an omega-3 oil pill. The oil helps the Curcumin get absorbed.
The worst case is I am delaying serious treatment - but with zero blasts (bone marrow test) and WBC's at 2.6 and ANC = .85 and my red blood starting to rise into normal range - I figure I have nothing to lose and I can invest 3 more months.
Dr. Cortes has no knowledge of Curcumin so it is outside his experience. He has no advice for me but is curious. But Dr. Aggarwal - also from M.D. Anderson - is very familiar with Curcumin and told me about the 8 grams dose.
Not a cure - just a management device. Do not try this at home since this is not FDA sanctioned. I just wanted you all to know what I am doing. I can experiement on me. And if this works, hopefully there will be clinical trials. I am still going in for weekly CBC's to monitor. If my ANC were to miraculously increase above 1.0 then I will consider resuming Sprycel sooner. Sprycel absolutely nails the PH+ chromosome in my case.
8 grams is a lot of Indian spice. Cost = $100 per month.