My last appointment at PMH was almost 2 weeks ago now, but I wanted to wait until I got all my test results back before I posted. Good news again! I remain undetectable for CML cells! Always a BIG sigh of relief when I get that result. My next PCR test will be in 3 months’ time (i.e., mid-November).
My routine bloodwork wasn’t anything to write home about. My red blood cells have been the highest they’ve ever been since before the transplant, but still nowhere near the normal range. I’m disappointed that recovery here is so slow, but at least it’s moving in the right direction. No doubt, the low red blood counts are contributing to my “crashing fatigue” – yeah, it’s a new term I picked up – it just means that I’m all fine one moment and the next, I crash and must lie down immediately and rest. The doc and I are working on building up my energy and stamina.
My white blood counts are low too. I was hoping they’d be closer to normal, so I don’t have to be a germaphobe anymore, but I guess I still have to.
I’ve been reading a lot and doing a lot of research lately, trying to find solutions to some health issues I’ve been experiencing. One thing that has really been bothering me (among others) is that I have severely dry facial skin. The skin on the rest of my body is generally dry too, but an application of moisturizer after a shower will generally be sufficient. But my facial skin is another story. It is one hot mess – red and inflamed, crusty, flakey, itchy, cracking, waking up with pain and streaks of blood on my face due to the skin cracking overnight. It gets better for a few days, and then the cycle repeats over and over again. It’s horrible, disgusting and oh so painful and uncomfortable.
That’s where my research comes in – what is causing this? What can I do to make it better? I suspect it’s a combination of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and food sensitivities, but it can also be caused by the chemo/radiation or Gleevec, or simply just ageing (haha). I’ve switched over to only natural skincare products with no chemicals and nasties. That helped a bit. I’ve installed a water conditioner in my home to “soften” the water and remove chlorine, minerals, etc. That helped a bit. I’ve tried to make sure I take my thyroid meds as directed and keep an eye on the thyroid levels. That helped a bit. I drank more water and am taking fish oil. That helped a bit. I’m staying away from dairy products. That helped my facial skin a bit but it did wonders for my digestion! What d’you know? I’m probably lactose intolerant and perhaps also allergic to the casein and/or whey in milk! My doc advised I should probably do an elimination and challenge diet to make sure. My search for the cause continues. I hope I figure it out by my next post!