Janet's Fight Against AML
Organized by: Laura Ahrens
On Tuesday, August 4th, 2015 she went into the emergency room with very sharp pains in her chest, which she described as feeling as though someone was reaching through her back and grabbing her heart, she thought she was having a heart attach. Come to find out, it was pancreatitis. She had been to Patient First the Saturday before her first hospital visit, because she had broken out in a rash that she thought was a heat rash. The Dr. at Patient First didn't even want to touch the rash (even after I explained we lived together and I had touched it on several occasions trying to figure out what the hell it was and never broke out in the rash) and told her they were hives, and prescribed her prednisone. Four days later she was in the emergency room with the chest pain which as I said was pancreatitis. They aren't sure if the pancreatitis was brought on by the prednisone or something she ate (said it was idiopathic). However upon doing the initial blood work, her white blood cell count was at a staggering 133,000. A healthy, normal persons WBC count is between 8,000 - 10,000. They ran more extensive tests and on Thursday, August 6th we got the results.... Leukemia. She was able to come home that Friday, August 7th but was right back in the emergency room that following Tuesday and admitted again but got to come home the following day. She had a blast cell crisis (which is where with blast cell numbers are growing). The exact type of Leukemia has yet to be confirmed, but the doctor is thinking it is AML M3 (type 3) which is also known as APL (where the white blood cells are immature and are fighting her red blood cells and platelets, which is causing her to be anemic on top of the Leukemia). The first time she was hospitalized her blast cell count was at 42% and the last time she was hospitalized (a week later) her blast cell count was 46%. The "rash" she had, was the Leukemia, specifically the blast cells. Upon her release her doctor started her on a chemo pill (Hydroxyurea) which she is to take twice a day for 30 days. Once she takes the pill, for the next few hours all she can do is lay in bed because it literally drains every once of energy she has and makes her dizzy. She has also had to take a leave of absence from work per her doctors instructions due to her immune system being weakened by the chemo. Mama has an appointment with her doctor, the hematologist/oncologist today and hopefully they will have more answers to our questions and an exact diagnoses. We will also learn more of her treatment options and what is to come. If you're able to donate, great, if you aren't, that's ok too!! The only thing I can ask of you, is to please at least share this post and get it out to as many people as we can!