I went to the hematologist today and talked about my low white blood count issues I’ve been having. It’s kind of long to explain, but since I’ve been asking you all to pray for me, I figured I would tell you what the doctor said too. 🙂
The appointment went good, though there was a lot of waiting and a lot of talking. First thing is first, no I don’t have leukemia, lymphoma or anything like that. He’s not extremely worried about my low white blood count since I don’t have any other major symptoms. Just a little tiredness, which could be anything. What has really worried him (and my primary physician) is that my granules (which is part of the wbc) was extremely low this time. It should normally be around 1000, when it was taken on the 10th it was 200. I wouldn’t be able to fight a bacterial infection to well with it that low. The way he explained my wbc is that my ‘normal’ is probably around 2 or 3, and the test on the 10th I was 2.1. Which actually would be fine, because it means my body wasn’t fighting any infections so my count was normal. When my body was fighting infections, the other times I had my blood tested, it came back ‘high’ in the 3 range because my body was fighting an infection so there was more white blood cells. But on the 10th and even today, my counts were in the 2 range because my body is not fighting anything (thank the Lord).
So now my granules. Like I said, that bothered him the most. The more I talked about the supplements I’ve been taking (I take flaxseed, grapefruit seed extract and a Shaklee immunity pill) he started thinking it was my supplements. He wants me to stop taking all my supplements for a month then I go back on March 26th for another blood test. He took a blood test today, and my granules were up from 200 to 400, but still not high enough. He really isn’t worried about it, but if in a month it shows that it’s not my supplements then he will want to look at my bone marrow, just to make sure that there isn’t any autoimmune things going on. But he really thinks at this point, it’s my supplements. I didn’t think about it until after we left, but I think it’s the grapefruit seed extract and the Shaklee pills that is messing with me. For all my other blood tests I wasn’t taking either of those two things, but most importantly I just started taking the grapefruit seed extract about a month ago. Which was about 2 weeks before my last test on the 10th, which is the only test out of the 4 I took that had low granules. And even today’s test I hadn’t taken the Shaklee, but I had still been taking my grapefruit seed extract. So though the thought of the bone marrow test is still a little nerve racking when I think of it (which I try not to do much 🙂 ) I’m really convinced that more than anything it’s the supplements. Well, more to the point, it’s probably the grapefruit seed extract. He said that my wbc is probably doing what it’s supposed to do and is fine, and when you start adding supplements, sometimes they confuse and mess up the body. I can accept that, since I’ve never really taken supplements before now. He thinks my sinus infections were just a simple sinus infection. Nothing really related to the wbc, but more because I’ve always had issues with my sinus’ for years, and this time it turned into an infection.
So all in all it was good, though I would have liked to received a clean bill of health at this appointment. But I’m guessing I’ll get that at my next appointment in a month (ok so that’s what I’m praying for 🙂 ). One of the biggest thing I was happy about was he said to start exercising more. My doctor had said to make sure I rest, even nurse friends and such said that. Everyone, and me, thinking my wbc was low, make sure I rest, etc… I told a friend the other day that if I rest anymore I’ll be sleeping most of the day. 🙂 My hematologist said to get up and get moving, start exercising, I’m so glad to hear that. He said keeping well hydrated is good too, and you know my water intake has been a little low. Then he said to eat a balanced diet. He said nothing crazy, just balanced. I said, “Well I’m a meat and taters kind of girl.” He said, “That’s fine, just add some broccoli with it.” It was all so reassuring. I feel like I can get back to a normalcy that I haven’t really felt in a while. I don’t have to worry about what I eat, I don’t have to worry about resting a lot and most of all I don’t have to worry about a low wbc, because for me there is a good chance it’s just normal. I do pray that after I’m off the supplements for a month, my blood work will come back with the granules in the normal range. I don’t mind dropping the grapefruit seed extract and Shaklee pills, but the flaxseed I ate to help with the constipation I get from my IBS. I have found some other things I like to eat, like my homemade hummus, that help with that too. I’m hoping if I stick with that, adding more veggies, keeping my water intake at a good level and start exercising more, then my IBS will be ok without the flaxseed. Thank you so much for the prayers, they really did help, I know they did. And now I’m going to try and move on and not worry about things right now.
I do need to say that I know that some of you might not fully agree with my stopping the supplements or agree with the fact that the supplements could be causing these problems. I respect your opinions but I ask that you not talk down, criticize or otherwise talk against what I, my husband and my doctor agree on. I hesitated sharing all this information because I did not want to receive critical comments regarding the approach we are taking. I ask that if you don’t agree, you would refrain from leaving any comments. This is my choice and I feel like it is what is best for my body. Thanks. 🙂