Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Just Learned

So sometimes I am paranoid about my platelet count. When it breaks 500 I worry, even though I have been assured and reassured again and again and again that 1. nothing is wrong with me 2. it is not even that high 3. it is good for all the patients at the cancer hospital because I am not only HLA-typed but also give a double dose every time I go in, sometimes a triple. I can't help it though, because if you break 500 you have to have your counts called in to the big hospital across the street. It makes me skiddish.

So today my counts were 530, an all-time day of donation high. I started to sweat a bit. Nevermind that my mother lived for years with a platelet count of 700+ and only after hormonal shifts has it normalized and not a blessed thing was ever wrong with her and today she is perfectly healthy - and that a quite reasonable explanation for my elevated count is my mother's elevated count. Forget the fact that my mother's hematologist said that doctors tend not to get worked up if you have no other symptoms or weird counts and just high platelets as long as they are under a million or so. Oh no, let's not be rational. Let's freak out. Let's think we're predisposed to some blood disorder, leukemia or some yet undiscovered platelet malfunction. LET'S PANIC!!!

Of course there is the wonder of google. I googled query regarding genetics and platelet count. I googled platelet counts and birth control, and then I stumbled upon one comment on a medical forum citing a high platelet count due to low grade anemia! So let's do a roundup here
1. Genetic Predisposition due to a parent's high platelet count
2. Use of oral contraceptives, which can elevate a platelet count
3. A tendency towards low grade anemia
CHECK (my Hgb has been in the 12's and sometimes even the 13's for the most part with regular use of vitamins and spirulina, but occasionally I'll go in after a few weeks of staying up late and eating literally all carbs, fat and sugar and my Hgb will have tanked to 11.8 or something)

So there are three very reasonable and incredibly benign explanations for my high platelets. I am like the poster child for naturally high, nothing to worry about but awesome to donate platelets.

Yet why do I keep freaking out? Sigh.
Anyways, after this day of falling asleep at desks and panicking while attached to a large machine drawing out my blood and sending it back in, I am off to meet my sister at the nail salon. Pedicure it is!


alex said...

omg, I do the same exact thing with this lump I have on my neck!
I found it in the summer so I had the school dr. check it out and she said it was fine, but noooo I have to google hodgkins and non lymphoma and freak myself out!
THEN I had my yearly physical last month so I had my primary check it and she said it "seemed okay" but that shed run a cbc just in case so of course i start freaking comes back fine, but I CAN'T STOP IMAGINING the worst!
It's horrribleeee...
anyway, that long winded comment was supposed to just say "i hear ya"...

Al said...

Ok, we should talk, because I have had this swollen tonsil for THREE years. THREE YEARS! The dr has said a billion times that if it were lymphoma/cancer I would have died by now, LOL (I laugh because she says it not to be mean but to be like SHUT UPPP ABOUT THE TONSIL) yet do I look at it constantly -- kind of yes :) I hear ya too! It's funny cause most of the patient charts that come across my desk are like "patient has had lump for 7 years, didn't think much of it"
hahahah then there's US. Special!

Elizabeth said...

Ok, you seriously HAVE to do the hypochondria study. THINK WHAT YOU COULD CONTRIBUTE TO SCIENCE.

<3 2xE

Al said...

ok stoppit I do not legit have hypochodria. I mean, if I could not live my life without a fear of illnes, of course I would donate my body to science, but worrying about something in your body when something in your body is legitimately a bit off isn't quite on the same plane as "I NEED TO BE MEDICATED"

Besides, my research here and my platelets are contributing plenty to science ;)

Al said...

and by "illnes" I mean "illness" lol