Friday, April 18, 2008

Drug Study at Six Weeks

This morning was the end of six weeks in the trial of the new drug CC-4047. Here is a table showing several CBC values on four different dates including today:

  SMG   SMG   Mayo   SMG
CBC   Mar 21   Mar 28   Apr 03   Apr 18   Minimum
WBC (leukocytes) K/uL 5.8 5.3 7.7 3.6 2.0
NE# (neutrophils) K/uL 2.9 2.6 5.0 1.8 1.0
PLT (platelets) K/uL 245 232 303 148 50
RBC (erythrocytes) K/uL 4.28 4.54 4.42 5.52
HGB (hemoglobin) K/uL 14.3 15.0 15.1 18.5
Albumin g/dL 3.4 3.5

The top three counts are ones that Mayo is particularly interested in watching, because the CC-4047 trial drug may eventually drive those numbers down. If any of those three counts falls below its minimum, the protocol will be changed for me, or, eventually, I could even be dropped from the study. Sorry to say, every one of those counts has dropped dramatically in just two weeks, though they are all still well above their minimum values.

I am also interested in the other three. HGB (hemoglobin) is slightly out of the top of its range. I don't know what to make of that. In fact, both HGB and RBC (red cell count) are higher than I have ever seen them in five years of tabulating results. They're nothing to worry about, but they don't seem like my blood. I'm actually wondering about a lab error.

Albumin, on the other hand, is almost exactly what it was two weeks ago at Mayo, and it is at the lowest I have seen in the five years. More to discuss with Dr. Lacy in a couple of weeks, when we will do the tests again. Albumin is one of the liver-function indicators, and is right on the boundary where the International Staging System would place a newly-diagnosed patient in Stage II rather than Stage I.

Bottom line: Albumin makes sense, though I don't like it much. The others seem wacko for me. I do believe that the albumin blood was drawn into a different tube than the CBC blood, so there is the possibility of a lab mixup in one and not the other. I sort of hope so.

Recent salad: Organic romaine lettuce with cucumber, organic dried sour cherries, blue cheese, salted pistachios, clementine, organic red wine vinegar.


  1. Hi Don. Don't worry. One step at the time.
    The important question is how do you feel? With more than 18 of Hgb you should run like the wind, I guess :-)
    Next results will tell us if there has been a mistake.

    Have a nice we, Sherlock

  2. You're probably right. Ran a 25k race this morning and I feel great afterward. I was "tapering" for that race, as runners do, which is supposed to build stores of glycogen. But I suppose it's possible that my body really was preparing itself with HGB as well. I'll ask Dr Lacy if that's possible.

    Thanks, have a great week yourself, Don