Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I Love Numbers

I've written a small application to generate charts of my blood work. You may have noticed the "Cancer Statistics" link in the side bar. This used to contain 1 (relatively ugly) chart. I now have charts for White Cells, Red Cells, Hemoglobin, Neutrophils and Absolute Neutrophils. As soon as I have more PCR data, I'll add a chart for that as well. Each chart notes significant events and indicates a normal range for the reading.

Not to geek out on you (which means I'm going to) but it's interesting the story the charts tell. In particular note the Neutrophils and Absolute Neutrophils charts. The Neutrophils chart shows the percentage of white blood cells that are neutrophils. The Absolute Neutrophils chart shows the actual number of neutrophils. For instance, if the white cell count was 1000 and the neutrophil reading was 65%, the Absolute Neutrophils would be 650.

The percentage of white blood cells that were Neutrophils started out low (between May and mid June 2008). However, the actual number of Neutrophils (the Absolute Neutrophil count) was very high. Based on this we can tell that I had a very high number of abnormal white blood cells that weren't neutrophils. This caused the percentage of neutrophils to be low, but the absolute count to be high. This means I had so many junk white cells that even though the actual number of neutrophils was very high, there were relatively few compared to the overall white cell count.

The application I wrote makes it easy to update and publish these charts so they should stay up to date each time my blood is drawn.


Kelly said...

That's amazing Matt. Thanks for making such a great tool to take in the information at a glance.

Here's the things staying in the green!

(Did I mention that we miss you guys?)

ryansmom said...

Hi, Matt. I have been reading your blog with great interest for some time now. I am glad to hear that you are feeling better now and that the Gleevac is working well for you. My son, Ryan, is 29 and was diagnosed with CML in July this year. I would love to have your software for the blood count charts. They are super!

ROEN said...

hi matt.
I'm 35 y.o .
i diagnosed with cml in April 2007 I'm on gleevec.

i read you bloog,
man i feel you , we on the same road .
i like to get the software for the blood count charts.
and if there you don't mined i like to have a chat with you over the phone or just on-line , i think we can exchange some information.

Matt said...


Your profile doesn't have an email address so I don't have a way to contact you. If you read this can you send me an email (you can find my address on my profile page) so that I can send you the software to generate the charts?

I hope you're doing well with your treatment.

Matt said...

Actually, same goes for "ryansmom". Can you send me an email so that I can contact you?

ryansmom said...

Hi, Matt. Got your email and I've sent you 2 emails but I guess they are not getting through to you. Glad to hear you are feeling better.