Well, let’s see. There’s good news, and there’s bad news. Compared to my last set of tests, done months ago, my red cells, hemoglobin and hematocrit have slipped slightly below the normal range. Just a shade, so I’m not overly concerned. I can bring those numbers up with diet…
Let’s continue with the bad news.
- My m-spike: it’s gone over 3 for the first time since 2011. Bummer, that. But I’ve seen it go up, then down, so again, I’m not overly worried. In my last set of tests, e.g., my m-spike was lower compared to previous tests. I therefore expect it to go down with my next set.
- Total protein is also up: 10.7. It’s been as high as 9.9, but this is the highest it’s ever been. This number HAS TO COME DOWN. Period.
- Gamma globulins are up a bit, too. Okay, Mr. Gamma, I’m on to you…you’d better watch out!!!
- So is my parathyroid…up, just a wee bit. This means that I need to get back on my daily vitamin D (I stopped a week before the tests, following my family doctor’s advice, which was to stop taking it a week before getting tested).
Ah, but there’s a bunch of GOOD stuff, too! And here’s a bit of advice that has helped me tremendously in the past 8 years plus: when you go over your test results, try NOT to focus on one or even two bad numbers. Look at the WHOLE picture. Things might not be as bad as you think…Okay, here goes:
- Beta-2 microglobulin: no change.
- C-reactive protein: it’s LOWER than it was last time (it’s gone down a whopping .20, which doesn’t sound like much, but consider that the normal range is as follows: “less than .50“!!! Is that a 40% drop? Something like that…I’m not a wiz with numbers…
- IgA: slightly up, from 6 to 7 (yes, I know, it’s just a smidgen, but even the slightest change in the right direction is more than welcome!!!). No change in IgM, but, as long as it’s staying put, I’m happy.
- Ferritin (= iron stores) is up from 31 to 39. My serum iron is slightly lower than it was months ago, but still way within the normal range.
- Creatinine (serum) and creatinine clearance (both serum AND urine) are both fine. In fact, all of my creatinines (they ran a bunch of creatinine-connected tests this time) are fine.
- Freelite chains. They’re still high (but then, they’ve always been high, so I wasn’t expecting a miracle), but they have improved A LOT compared to last time. Big move in the right direction.
- No Bence Jones. As usual.
- UPDATED on November 30: serum calcium is also way within the normal range.
Now, I wanted to discuss the next test separately from the others. You see, I had a new test done, a test I found out about in the Australian MGUS curcumin trial, in fact. This test checks one of the breakdown products of bone called “deoxypyridinoline” (hey, try pronouncing THAT fast, three times in a row, I dare you! ;-)). This deoxythingy is a specific marker of osteoclast activity and bone resorption. In simpler terms, it helps determine if you have bone disease or not. Well, my deoxythingy result is fully within the normal range,. Oh, and so is my deoxypyridinoline/creatinine ratio. Purrfect.
I think that’s about it. In conclusion, I’m not ecstatic (I would certainly have been much happier if all of my MM markers had simply…disappeared!!!!!), but I’m not devastated, either. In this last period, you see, I’d gone down to 6-6.5 grams/day, and, I admit this publicly!!!, there were days when I didn’t take it at all, for one reason or another. I now realize that THAT was a HUGE mistake. These test results confirm that I need to be on a regular AND higher dose of curcumin. I’m not taking my albumin, total protein, Hgb levels and m-spike numbers lightly, believe me…
So, no more 6 grams for me. I’ve already gone back up to my usual 8 grams. And I’ve added 1.5 grams of quercetin (which I’d stopped taking, because I ran out of it), too. And, well, we’ll just to have to wait and see how I do next time! No worries.