Stem cell collection

Posted on November 26th, 2007 by Cam.
Categories: Let's talk.

Today was exhausting. Gave my last injection of growth hormone this morning when I got up. We then went straight to the hospital where I had a blood test to see if my white cell count and stem cell count was high enough. They needed a concentration of 10 or 11 for my stem cells. Mine came in at 111. That is good. It meant that I only had to go in on one day to have the collection done and not go back tomorrow.
It still took four and a half hours on a machine that sucks my blood out of one arm, spins it, and collects the right part of the juice. It processes 1mL per minute, so at the end of the procedure, we had about 300 or so mL. Seems like a lot of work for an amount less than a can of coke.
The most painful part of the process was trying to have a whiz. It is just not natural to be half-laying down in a bed, watching Dr Phil, with only a thin curtain to separate me from the busy clinic on the other side. The pee-bottle tells you that it will look after everything, but your brain tells you are going to wet the bed. So it didn’t happen. Then I tried to stand up, but the pain in my spine, the dizzyness and the mental block that occurs when you feel like you are standing in the middle of a room trying to pee (once again, quite unnatural), it just wasn’t going to be. So I stuck it out (I mean put up with it) for the next hour and watched the clock tick away. Needless to say that I was relieved to be disconnected from the machine.
So now I am very tired. I have already had a sleep this afternoon, but still lethargic. There is something about having your entire volume of blood extracted, spun, and returned a few times that takes it out of you. Literally.

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