I returned to Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida Friday for more blood work. It has been one month since my M-spike registered a .3. The four months prior (two subsequent tests) revealed there was myeloma present, but the M-spike was too small to measure. Prior to that, I had been in complete response (CR), with no trace of myeloma or the associated protein in my marrow or blood.
Friday’s goal: To see if different labs looked at similar results in different ways. In other words, there is always the possibility the lab my Wisconsin docs used might view or measure the same M-spike differently. It is all about velocity. Will this test come back a .3 this month as well? That would be fine, showing little or no disease progression. A PSA test for prostate cancer works basically the same way. The PSA number is only an indicator. Within reason, a PSA or M-spike number isn’t what’s important–it’s how fast that number is increasing (or decreasing) which tells the tale. For example, a good friend of mine has had an almost constant M-spike of 1 (one) for years. Much higher than my .3. But if my .3 goes to .4, then .6 that indicates a trend of increasing disease progression. Stable is key!
If my M-spike is still only .3 or lower, we won’t change my treatment regimen. If it is .4 or higher, we may consider hitting my myeloma harder by increasing the dose and frequency of my chemotherapy. I should know something by Thursday or Friday. Stay tuned!
Feel good and keep smiling! Pat