Today was my 3 monthly ET check up and blood test - and I was astounded to hear that my platelet count has dropped to 448 from 632 in August (almost 30% lower). What was even better was that my wife accompanied me for the first time, so she was able to hear the good news in person.
I really do feel like a very lucky so and so. Hydroxycarbamide has really done its job well (1 per day Mon-Fri, " per day Sat & Sun), and so far without any significant side effects. I have been told to stay on the same dosage of HC for 3 months, until the next review, which is fine by me.
I also raised the tricky subject of 'cancer or not cancer?' (in a non-confrontational way) and my consultant explained that from a patient perspective, as opposed to a technical categorisation, it is better to think of ET as a pre-cancerous condition that may lead to cancer (leukemia) at a later date for a small number (<5%) of sufferers. ET does not directly lead to the formation of cancerous tissue or tumours. That made a lot of sense to me, and at the end of the day my diagnosis and treatment is independent of its categorisation.
So for anyone newly diagnosed, like me, take heart - there are solutions out there
ps. One downside - I was lucky enough to get a parking ticket for overstaying by 18mins thanks to an hour+ wait in pharmacy. The English NHS policy on parking really sucks and just puts extra strain on people who are already struggling.
It didn't stop me smiling from ear to ear all day though!!