I recently went to the ER and had blood work done. I was informed that my White Blood Cell Count was high (320,000) and diagnosed with Chronic CML (Myeloid Leukemia). My Cancer Specialist ordered additional blood work to confirm the ER's diagnosis. In the interim, he has me on allopurinol and hydroxurea. I now have to wait until January 3rd for the results. Is it possible that my high white blood cell count can be attributed to something else, such as, Mono. If it is Chronic CML, what are the survival rates? What are my chances with an allogeneic transplant? Should I think about getting a second opinion? I am inquiring about the second opinion because I had a routine physical in November and was informed that my potassium level was low. Other then that, I was informed that everything was fine. Any information provided to me would be much appreciated!
Second opinons can be a good thing when dealing with something as serious as cancer, so if you'd like to get one for your peace of mind, get one. But be certain to take along your test results and all from round one to minimize repetition of what you've already had done.
It's very common to question a diagnosis of cancer, particularly when one has been seen in a doctor's office not long before and been told things were fine. Some forms of cancer can come on very quickly. In any case, 320,000 is indeed an extremely high white count - it would register with me as a leukemic level count, way above what you'd see with an infection such as mono.
Allopurinol and hydroxyurea are a fairly standard course. I think it sounds as if you're in good hands, if that makes you feel any better. There are all kinds of advances coming around for CML; talk to your doctor about your options once the diagnosis is officially confirmed.
I wish you all the best. Here's to survivorship. :)
I am sorry to hear that you are ill. To my knowledge, a white cell count of 320,000 is very high and much higher than a person with mono would have. Also, normally a person with cancer will have an abnormal differential and this can help physicians' diagnose cancer. Did the ER also perform a marrow biopsy ?
I have been told that chronic leukemias are better than the acute and that there has been this new wonder drug for CML patients. The drug's name is Gleevec and you may want to discuss this with your physician and do some research on the internet on it. To my understanding, this drug has put some patients' in remission. Here's a link with more information:
My best friend had Hodgkins Lymphoma when she was 18. She has been cancer free for over 10 years now. I also know a physician who was diagnosd with CML and had an allogenic marrow transplant. She is working again and is feeling great !
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