“You have to fight through some bad days to earn the best days of your life.”
Hey everyone! It’s transplant day +16!
Brandon has officially engrafted! Woohoo! Today Brandon’s white blood cell count was 4.7, with his ANC at 3.5. This means that the stem cells have accepted Brandon’s bone marrow as their new home. This is such amazing news and means that everything is on track for Brandon’s recovery.
At this stage in his recovery we will be more alert for signs of graph-verses-host disease (GVHD). This occurs when the donor’s cells start to attack the recipient’s body. Symptoms of GVHD can manifest in many different ways depending on the organ that the white blood cells start to attack. The most common organs affected by GVHD are the skin, upper and lower GI tract, and the liver. Brandon is currently taking an anti-rejection medication called tacrolimus that helps to suppress his immune system, making GVHD less likely. Thankfully, Brandon has not had any symptoms of GVHD and I hope this continues throughout his recovery.
The transplant team is starting to make plans for Brandon’s discharge. YAY! This is likely 10+ days out, but it’s wonderful to see some of the pieces falling into place. Brandon will continue on his IV antibiotics, antiviral medication, and pain medications throughout the weekend and the team will revaluate his progress early next week. If he improves over this time he can start to taper off his pain medications and slowly transition to a less intensive course of antibiotics and antivirals. Now that he has a white blood cell count things seem to be improving at a much faster rate.
Thank you all for your love, support, and prayers during this especially difficult time. We are so thankful and blessed.