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Trouble with low lymphocyte count

NHL_dude
Posts: 1
Joined: Jul 2011

I have a history of NHL and was treated with R-CHOP 2 years ago. I now have a low absolute lymphocyte count of 540 cells/mcl with normals being 850-3900. I also have anemia with hemoglobin of 11.8. My oncologist does not know about these counts because he was not copied on the results. I have never had a low lymphocyte count. I am concerned that this low count may signal a return of NHL. Is a level of 540 something to be concerned about? Should I bother to tell my oncologist? What further testing could be done?

Thanks for your reply.

xlconsult
Posts: 18
Joined: Jun 2011

Hi,
You should let the oncologist know about it to get his opinion. There are diets that improve lymphocytes. I too had R-COP sometime back and had low lymphocytes and lower haemoglobin later. Generally these should gradually increase back to normal range after few months. In my case continued maintenance therapy using R, caused some complications (mouth/throat ulcers) and its medication probably reduced lymphocytes that stayed for sometime (500-600). However I got it back to around 2500-3000 within a month and remained steady for the past 3 months using herbs. My haemoglobin increased from 11 to 12.7 at the same time.
Good luck.
Hari

moftexas
Posts: 13
Joined: Feb 2010

I have almost the exact same issue right now and keep getting infections because of it. The oncologists feel it is from the Rituxan and Fludurabine. I guess the low counts can last from one to two years. I also have anemia like you and low immunoglobulin counts. One suggestion was to receive IVIG therapy, but insurance declined it because my lyphocyte count needs to be below 400. I don't think it necessarily means the cancer has returned,but I'm up for my retesting in early August, so I'll see what hapens then.

I would talk to your oncologist and get a good idea of what's going on.

xlconsult
Posts: 18
Joined: Jun 2011

Hi,
I had IVIG infusion twice as a wild trial to improve my counts. I believe IVIG's half-life period is only 5 days and many doctors say that it is a waste of money (it's pretty costly!) & painfully long infusion. I had no longterm improvement and did not solve my problem of not able to reduce/stop steroids.

Hari

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