Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Long Day In IPOP

Today's 10 A.M. appointment at the IPOP clinic did not come to an end until after 5 P.M. I have been experiencing some shortness of breath on exertion the last couple of days; this was accounted for by steadily declining red blood cell counts. Today's count was sufficiently low to trigger a decision to give me a couple of units of blood. There is nothing unusual about this, but it is a first for me. I have been donating blood for 30 or more years, but I have never before been on the receiving end of the transaction, at least as far as I can recall.

It took some time to round up the units, and then each one took two hours to drip in; I was meanwhile closely watched for signs of an adverse reaction (typically a skin rash or hives, or a fever), which did not appear, and my vitals were checked half-hourly.

I noticed the enhancement to my energy level even on my walk back to the apartment. Of course the hope now is that the transplanted stem cells will soon begin to get to work manufacturing the red blood cells I require.

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