The eosinophils (EOS), the component of the white blood that fights allergies or parasites, are climbing once again. It makes me think of a little story that the Pasadena Library children's librarian often told when Cynthia was a little grasshopper. "They went up the hill and down the hill and up the hill and down the hill and up the hill and down the hill."
They (the EOS) went up and then they went down with the prednisone. Then they went up when I tapered off the prednisone. Then they went down with prednisone. Then I tapered off the prednisone again, and we're climbing that hill for the third time.
What can I say? I'm tired of climbing the hills. I hate this "in between" stage when I must carefully pace myself if I don't want to collapse. (I'm back to making dates and breaking dates.) I don't like feeling out of breath after climbing two flights of stairs. I'm deathly afraid of becoming as sick as I was during the summer and fall of 2008. I hate the manic, sleepless side effects of the treatment - high dose prednisone. I want off the treadmill.
Now, here comes the tricky part. When I saw the EOS specialist at Stanford last spring, he advised me to see an allergist after I tapered off the prednisone so that we could see if allergies were the driver of the EOS. I saw a very competent allergist last week and learned that I'm allergic to pollen (no surprise), dust mites (no surprise) and pets (BIG surprise). We have two cats and two dogs.
So . . . we know I have allergies. And we know that my EOS are rising. We just don't know if there's a connection between the two. The allergist recommended that I isolate myself from the pets for two weeks and then immediately measure my blood counts. I've decided to take a friend's offer to use her Newport Beach apartment for two weeks. I pack my bags right after Thanksgiving.
Just doing my little bit for science.