The day’s continue to stack up. Ian is now 7 days post transplant. His counts remain low but he believes he will see a bump in his counts any day.
The next step in the transplant process is engraftment. I believe I have discussed this in previous posts. Every morning at about 4 am the nurses draw Ian’s blood to check his “absolute neutrophil count (ANC)” among other things. His ANC has been at zero essentially for three days now. As the new stem cells continue to work diligently to make new white blood cells there will a point at which the bone meow finally begins releasing the white blood cells into the blood stream. That day we will see Ian’s ANC make a small jump from zero. This is engraftment. Everyday afterwards, Ian’s counts will continue to increase. Once his ANC is over 500 he will be allowed to go home. Sometimes this is the day after engraftment, sometimes several days afterwards.
Ian remains physically vulnerable during this time while awaiting engraftment. He received an additional blood transfusion for his anemia today. He has been closely monitored for fever during this experience, and today he had two very low grade fevers (temperature not over 100 degrees). He has been on antibiotics, antivirals, and antifungals since transplant and the doctors have adjusted his antibiotics with his recent fever. When you have virtually no white blood cells, fevers can occur as a sign of infection or in absence of infection. Ian’s fevers are not alarming but rather an expected consequence of transplant. He feels well still and continues to do almost 12000 steps per day in the pod.
Today Ian, kit, and I all collector realized how exhausted we are. Ian napped more today and kit left earlier so she could get some rest. I plan to turn in soon as well to get some extra sleep.
We appreciate your visits and prayers!