Thursday, October 25, 2007

Stable again?

I was into the Dr on Tuesday and my hemoglobin has stabilized at least for a week. After the blood transfusion a week ago, it should have gone up two points to about 10.4 and that is where is was this time as well. The transfusion was with A neg blood which may have affected the higher level as well. Since I am A pos, I can get blood from A or O, either pos or neg.

My white cell and platelet counts are somewhat low though which will also need watching. The Dr has adjusted my prednisone down a little and I have an appt again next Tuesday.

Other than that I am feeling ok. My son and I traveled to Chicago last weekend and attended a TI99 home computer faire on Saturday. The Chicago User Group sponsors this every year to share and exchange hardware and software for this 27+ year old computer. About 20 people attended with a few reporting from a similar meeting in Germany last month. There is an internet based user group of over 500 members to which I belong.

We went downtown Saturday night for Gino's famous deep dish pizza. We walked part of the Magnificent Mile shopping area, visited the Apple Computer store and paid $32 for 3 hours of parking. Sunday, we visited the Science Museum for 5 hours and then drove back to Minneapolis. Traffic in Chicago was terrible, taking us an hour just to get from downtown to the O'Hare airport area. I made it home about 12:45 AM and slept later in the morning.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Further setback

I was in yesterday for a blood transfusion and a further talk with my primary Dr. I discovered that my blood cells are now 30% donor (my brothers) and 70% my original. A few months ago it was reversed and supposed the change is in the bone marrow as well. In this light, the Dr has recommended that I do not go back to work on Friday.

I also met with my employer HR and health departments, who advised me that starting work on Friday would delay the start of my LTD payments. I would have to work 60% time just to offset what LTD will pay if I am not working. So, I will be classified as a "suspended" employee and will still be part of the company group plan as far as insurance benefits are concerned. I will be billed for my share of the costs and will have to pay those out of my LTD monthly check. There are also a lot of other benefit and organizational changes going on at work so I plan to let that situation settle down and consider going back to work in early 2008. Of course, there is no guarantee that my job will be there to return to. Hopefully, by then, my medical situation will be figured out as well.

Your prayers and support are still appreciated.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Flashback to April

Seems like I am back to my situation back in April. Though not scheduled for a Dr appt for another two weeks, I sensed that my hemoglobin was low. I was tired, out of breath with little exertion, dizzy spells and getting slight headaches. So this morning, I called in and arranged for a blood test this afternoon. Turns out that my Hgb was 8.4 and white cell count was 2.3, both the lowest that they have been since I left the hospital in late May. My platelets are up to 133, the highest since before my BMT.

So, I will be in for a blood transfusion on Tuesday and the Dr has increased my prednisone. I have been on 20 mg every other day and now moving to 60 mg every day. I assume that after this, I will feel pretty good again. I was approved for long term disability pay through insurance and await a response from Social Security. I am seriously considering going back to work 1/2 time to see how that works out. It will seem like April again, working with regular trips to Dr for blood transfusions.

Over the past month, I have been taking inventory of my old TI99 computer collection and plan to travel to Chicago for a computer faire on Saturday. My son will help drive and we will stay part of Sunday to sightsee as well. My first home computer was the TI99/4 in 1980. I now have about 10 spares, 150 cartridges and miscellaneous hardware. There were close to 500 different cartridges produced, many after TI discontinued the computer in 1983. My most recent addition was a newly developed hard disk interface with a 2GB HD. There is still an internet based user group with over 500 members, 50 of which will probably show up in Chicago.