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Question about increasing PCR results- what questions should we ask?

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#1 kristyn


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Posted 06 June 2011 - 06:31 PM

My husband was diagnosed in July 2010 and is on 600mg of Tasigna daily.  His PCR was down to .006 in February.  Because he was doing so well, his oncologist decided to get him on a quarterly visit schedule and did another PCR test in April- that was .008, but the doctor said not to worry because it could just be the equipment calibration or some other fluke.  He has been feeling exceptionally tired over the past couple of weeks, so he went in last Friday for blood tests- his regular bloodwork is within normal range, but the PCR is up to .01.  I realize that is still a number that most people would love to have at 11 months in, but it seems to me that if he is doing everything just the same- it should either stay the same or continue to drop unless there is a problem.

He is going in for a BMB on Wednesday, and we plan to ask about a mutation test. What other questions should we ask?   He is handling it much better than I am- I think partly because I lurk on this site quite regularly and see what all of you have been through trying to get your numbers and your lives balanced.

Thanks for any suggestions!


#2 Happycat


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Posted 06 June 2011 - 06:58 PM


Just from a scientific standpoint, I would think those numbers are well within normal statistical fluctuation one would expect for any measurement on this scale.  All measurements can fluctuate, a little bit up, or a little bit down - that's normal.  The overall trend is up, true, but it's a small uptick.  I don't think they worry until they see at least 0.5-1.0 log increase. 

I guess I would ask about the significance of the increase when it is up 0.04 after roughly 3-4 months.


#3 Trey


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Posted 06 June 2011 - 08:24 PM

I wouldn't worry about it or have a mutation test.  These results could be obtained by 3 separate PCR tests on the same sample on the same day.  The kinase mutation test is pretty much useless if you are CCyR or better.  The BMB is pretty much useless at this point (MMR) but some Oncs continue to do them.  Rejoice in MMR.  Repeat PCR test in 3 months.

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