I am blogging on this as a shout out for help! I still dont have a crystal clear understanding of MC's condition. Slowly but surely, I am reaching out. My husband took time to show me all her medical records and explained the numbers and bla-bla medical terms. I am happy to report my progress.As I explained, numerous blood tests were done, and would be continuously done, to check on her condition. Now, whenever they check the blood tests, they focus on the results of her hemoglobin and bilirubin levels.
What is hemoglobin?
Hemoglobin is a protein that is carried by red cells. It picks up oxygen in the lungs and delivers it to the peripheral tissues to maintain the viability of cells. Hemoglobin is made from two similar proteins that "stick together". Both proteins must be present for the hemoglobin to pick up and release oxygen normally. One of the component proteins is called alpha, the other is beta. Before birth, the beta protein is not expressed. A hemoglobin protein found only during fetal development, called gamma, substitutes up until birth.The normal level for MC's age (5 years old) is between 11-14.5; her records showed fluctuations from 8.5 to 10.4. For her condition, reaching the 10 mark is already a good sign.
What is Bilirubin?
Bilirubin is a breakdown product of hemoglobin, the substance in blood that carries oxygen. Normally when blood cells become old they are trapped and destroyed by the spleen. When this occurs, the hemaglobin must be broken down in the liver to bilirubin in order to be disposed of. Bilirubin is eventually excreted in the bile and leaves the body in the feces.
The normal level of bilirubin depends on the individual laboratory. Most laboratories consider a level of 1.1 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl) or lower to be normal.
When the bilirubin level reaches about 3 mg/dl the white parts of the eyes become yellow ("icterus"), the urine becomes dark, and the skin becomes yellow ("jaundice"). Patients with high levels of bilirubin also experience itching. (From Hepatitis C Information Central)
MC's records states her level seesawing from 1.9 to 3.5.
It is really frustrating not to know everything; how would you expect me to understand those medical reports in Deutsch when I cannot even decipher them in the medical English terms! At least now I can sleep better.