Sunday, April 3, 2016

#2 - How Did This Begin?

(Note: This blog post was originally sent as a text, which is why it is more fragmented.)
(This is long winded. I'm sorry. If you skip ahead to the end, I understand.)
After initial blood tests yesterday, along with other symptoms that Ellie has (cold, bruising, fatigue, fever, joint pain) everything seemed to point toward Leukemia. Due to her very low levels of hemoglobin, platelets and absolute neutrophil count (white blood count was ok), she received a transfusion of platelets and red blood cells last night. Her numbers increased marginally this morning, but that was likely due to the infusion, and not because her body was now processing more on its own. 
As of this afternoon, her numbers were as follows:
Hemoglobin: 7.3 (normal 11.5-14.5)
Platelets: 26,000 (normal 140,000-450,000)
WBC: 4.3 (normal 4.5-13.5; this has gone down since yesterday from high of 6.5)
Absolute neutrophil count: <100 (normal is 1400-8500)
Unclassified (no idea what this means!): (normal is 0, at most <10) Ellie has gone from 28 to 86. 
(Friends in the medical field, I may be botching this information! If so, I'm sorry. We are learning as we go.)
Tonight, Ellie is receiving more blood, as well as two medicines to keep her potassium and uric acid levels low. She has not been on any antibiotics. She did have Tylenol once last night to help with pain. She was given something this afternoon to help her pass a stool; it hasn't happened yet. 
A cytometry flow was done on her blood last night to further look at it. The pathologist determined that about 14% of the cells looked like leukemia. This is good and bad for various reasons, but all it really gives us right now is vague certainty. 
As of this afternoon, her doctor says that she is "90% sure" that this is Leukemia. Nothing has really been mentioned of what kind of leukemia it could be, but she is not in grave danger right now. She is very, very sick, but it's not life or death. (I cannot believe I am typing these words.) There is a very small chance that this could all just be a virus. We have not been given false hope though, and we are preparing for everything. 
Tomorrow morning (11-11:30?), Ellie will undergo a bone marrow aspiration and biopsy. Both of these tests will let us know if it is definitely Leukemia, and if it is, what type of leukemia it is. She will undergo a mild anesthesia to perform these tests. Hopefully we will have definite answers by tomorrow evening. 
Please continue to pray for wisdom and clarity for all involved. Pray that we know what to do every step of the way. Pray that we handle everything the best way possible, so that glory is brought to our Heavenly Father. Pray for Eva and Nora as they adjust to all of these changes. Pray for permanent healing of Ellie's body. 
Thank you for all of your love. 
Mike, Jaclyn, Eva, Nora and Ellie 
First night in the hospital.

After receiving blood and fluids, Ellie was in a much happier mood.
She is wearing gloves because she wanted to. It is essential hospital fashion.
Eva and Nora visiting the hospital for the first time. Eva handled everything extremely well. Nora had a bit rougher time with everything, especially since they had to dress like this to see Ellie. 

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