So today was my follow-up doctor's visit and as things go it was fine. Or at least better. I don't know if I'm happy or not just because part of me is thinking, "So could my platelets just drop randomly and I'll bleed out somewhere?" I'm thinking this is a fiction novel waiting to be written :) Someday I'll get around to that too.
Basically my platelet levels have gone up to 89,000! Still low but obviously better. It also turns out that they ran a Lupus Anticoagulant Assay on me and that came up abnormal. The good news is in 90% of people that doesn't mean anything and is just some innocent thing in my blood. Because I have no idea what it really means or how to explain it I'm going to cut and paste what I found on the internet. Ultimately it doesn't mean much but I don't have to go back for 6 more months and should be fine. I'll just have to check with him before I have any major surgeries or put my head through a windshield :)
Lupus anticoagulant (also known as lupus antibody, LA, or lupus inhibitors) is a medical phenomenon where autoantibodies bind to phospholipids and proteins associated with the cell membrane. Since interactions between the cell membrane and clotting factors are necessary for proper functioning of the coagulation cascade, the lupus anticoagulant can interfere with blood clotting as well as in-vitro tests of clotting function. Paradoxically, lupus anticoagulants are also risk factors for thrombosis.
The name "lupus anticoagulant" is a misnomer. Most patients with a lupus anticoagulant do not actually have lupus erythematosus, and only a small proportion will proceed to develop this disease (which causes joint pains, skin problems and renal failure, amongst other complications). Patients with lupus erythematosus are more likely to develop a lupus anticoagulant than the general population.
Conceptually, lupus anticoagulants overlap with the antiphospholipid antibody syndrome. Lupus anticoagulants can be understood as the tendency of antiphospholipid antibodies to prolong the clotting times, especially in phospholipid rich clotting testing such as the dilute Russell's viper venom time.
Often, the lupus anticoagulant is diagnosed on asymptomatic patients by a routine blood testing prior to surgery. Patients with a lupus anticoagulant are prone to thrombosis, excess bleeding, and habitual abortion (repeated miscarriages).
Get all that? Yea, me either. But mostly I'm just going to be observed for a while and that's about it. I get to keep my spleen and bone marrow :)
That's good right?
Conflict and Tension, Part 4
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