I am to be bled

Last week was supposed to be vacation for me, that’s why posting was light. But alas, fate threw me a curve. An AS flare up led to a routine blood test, which came back with some unusual cell counts. We believe we know what’s causing it, and if we’re right it’s easily managed. But there are some other things it could be including pages and pages of freaky rare leukemia and various bone marrow malignancies. The crazy high counts cause everything from autoimmune flare ups — a complication I’m terribly prone to, did happen, and turned the latter half of the week into an intractable nightmare opiate painkillers and gobs of other drugs could barely ease — it also causes the blood to be thicker and stickier, making it harder on organs and veins and posing a significant clotting risk. A person can’t go around untreated with this condition for long without suffering a stroke or an embolism or some serious complication. Not to mention, if I had to spend the rest of my life feeling like I felt Friday, sooner or later I’d have to kill myself. It was miserable.  But the meds and bedrest worked, I felt much better by last night.

So first thing Monday morning I’m going to have more specialized tests done, then I am to be bled, like in ye merry old medieval world. It’s a brute force approach to get the counts down, fast. If the tests come back normal as far as how the cells look, no weird hairy filaments around WBCs or deformed/nucleated RBCs, I’m probably in the clear. If not, we’ll go from there.


  1. StevoR says

    Sh.. umm, yikes.

    Sorry to hear that Stephen “DarkSyde” Andrew.

    Hope all is okay, best wishes wishes and get well soon.

    (Imagining leeches as in ye olde daze..)

  2. barbrykost says

    I’ve missed you and I am sorry you were unwell instead of having fun. Here’s hoping you respond to the easy fix.
    Also–and here I am speaking as a (formerly) regular blood donor–what will they do with your blood? It can’t be used for transfusion, and it can’t be put down the drain–biological hazard, you know. So, can they use it for research, experiments or something? Put some in a vial and see if you can do miracles with it?
    Anyway, rest well.

  3. DonDueed says

    Perhaps it could be stored for self-donation in case you need surgery at some point down the road.

    Sorry to hear of your troubles, hope things work out all right.

  4. leni says

    That sounds really awful :/ I suppose we can be thankful that there won’t be leeches, but I imagine that isn’t much consolation for you.

    Best wishes to you and I hope it helps.

  5. jakc says

    . As to what to do with your blood: thick blood is probably bad for vampires, but I bet it’s a taste treat they can’t resist. Sell it on eBay

  6. MG Myers says

    I’m very sorry to hear of your medical issue. Hopefully the issue can be easily and quickly managed. Take whatever time away from the blog that you need. We’ll still be here when you return!

  7. magistramarla says

    From another person who deals with autoimmune issues – I hope that you get this flare under control soon.

  8. F says

    Have fun, and I hope things go well for you. Just think of the positive side – at least they can draw your blood without putting in a central line.

  9. says

    Yeap, that’s the one. I have a pretty solid case of it too. Controllable with Humira, occasional z-pac, painkillers. About four months ago I started working out, coming from being in the worst shape of my life, and I’ve kept it up. Finally, after that long, getting strong, the muscles are finally responding noticaebly, weight way down. That helps AS, at least for me, more than any med I’ve ever tried.

  10. says

    I’m glad to find another sufferer of AS; well not glad that you suffer from it of course. I was diagnosed about 3 years ago, I take pain killers, NSAIDs and a muscle relaxer daily, which keeps the edge off but that’s about it. I was going to give Humira a shot, but I don’t think I could handle the IV, I hate needles. I may try Celebrex or Enbrel or one of those other meds that’s just the quick shot. I’ve tried working out to keep moving, but I’ve got so much damage in my back and left hip that I just can’t do it. And what sucks is I’m only 36, yet getting around is becoming a problem.

  11. sunsangnim says

    Sorry to hear that. I hope everything turns out alright.

    When you mention bloodletting, I can’t help but think of Steve Martin as a medieval barber.

  12. says

    I’m on Remicade for Crohn’s, PSA, Psoriasis, and AS actually.

    The drug itself is not bad. Yes it’s an infusion, but the clinics are really nice and they go out of your way to make you feel comfortable. The only side effect I ever noticed is that if I have had a particularly bad flare right before, I might be a bit tired for the rest of the day, but that might also just be the physical reaction to the flare. Most people sleep through the whole infusion.

    Good Luck! I hope all goes well.


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