Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Environmental Illness, and Low White Blood Cell Count

Posted by: Maff

Maff

White Blood Cells I feel I must apologise for my recent lack of blogging activity but I'm sure when I explain why you'll understand - plus the reason has given me the inspiration for this post!

As regulars will be aware I have suffered from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) for a long time - since I was 11, so 20 years now. Like many ME/CFS sufferers I am also burdened by adrenal fatigue, low thyroid function, hypoglycaemia, Candida and Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) amongst other things. I also suffered from severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivity for a number of years in my early 20s but thankfully was able overcome it (touch wood)!

Like most suffering from environmental illnesses (or more appropriately here 'invisible illnesses') I have been constantly frustrated by the absence of any abnormal findings on conventional medical tests over the years. After all, if the standard lab tests are normal there can't possibly be anything wrong with us in the eyes of the average doctor - or perhaps we are just too difficult to deal with.

Recently however something significant did show up in some routine blood tests I had carried out by my GP. Ultimately however I once again ended up frustrated at the medical system here in the UK.

I had attended the doctor's surgery in an effort to obtain some form of evidence for the long-standing liver impairment I know to be present from my symptoms and various functional testing I have had carried out privately (e.g. detoxification profiles, toxic exposure profiles, intestinal permeability assessment etc). I described my symptoms of chronic, dull pain just under my rib cage on the right hand side, intestinal pain on passing stools, stool colour ranging from white to yellow and orange (not a healthy brown), fatty stools, yellowing of the skin (jaundice) etc. Credit to my GP as he always listens and subsequently examined me which involved palpating (pressing) on my body at various points around the liver, gallbladder and intestines. I indicated that the most pain was felt the close he pressed to the liver and gallbladder area. He subsequently ordered a standard liver enzyme blood test - the results of which came back well within normal ranges. Nothing I hadn't expected as low grade liver impairment and inflammation just won't show up on these tests - they look for enzymes released by hepatocytes (liver cells) when they die so only show up when major damage is currently being done to the liver as in alcoholic liver disease or viral hepatitis.

However, my GP also ordered a full blood count as a matter of routine and lo and behold it came back with findings that could not be ignored - my total leukocyte (white blood cell) count was officially low as were numbers of neutrophils and monocytes (vital players in the innate immune response - our first line of defence against infectious disease) and lymphocytes (white blood cells involved in acquired immunity that recognises and attacks specific targets). Here are those results:

 

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Environmental Illness, and Low White Blood Cell Count  

 

On previous blood counts over the past 10-15 years all these results had been hovering just inside the bottom of the 'normal' range so no notice had been taken. This was the first time there had been obvious abnormality and signs of substantial immune impairment so my GP had no choice but to order a retest. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how you choose to look at it, the second set of results put me back just within normal range so no further action has been taken.

Now at this point I'd just like to point out what a great example this is of medicine not following the basic principles of science and being more concerned with finances and resources than the health of patients. Put simply I had two blood counts, one showed undeniably low leukocytes and one showed borderline levels. Now how can you make a decision not to take further action when you have one abnormal and one normal (just) result to work from? Not to beat about the bush - you can't! Scientists repeat tests over and over so they can see patterns in results. At the very least a doctor would need a third test to make any kind of reasonable decision about the status of my leukocytes and my immune  system. Unfortunately that is not how things work within the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK and most conventional medical systems around the world. A test is just a snapshot - if blood was taken again today my results may very well be low again.

So what could have caused my leukocytes to be low on the first blood count? Well as I've just touched on a blood test is just a snapshot at a particular time and everything in the human body tends to show some natural variation throughout the day and night (diurnally) and over longer periods such as seasons. This is particularly true when you have a chronic illness such as ME/CFS. It may be that I have had low leukocytes on many occassions and this is just the first time it has coincided with me having a blood test. However, there are a couple of factors that immediately spring to mind that I think may account for the result at this time - stress and sugar.  

As some regular readers will know, I am currently completing a bachelors degree in nutritional health and at the time of the test I was hugely stressed with writing my dissertation and another essay. This towards the end of a demanding final year with a lot of other work already having taken a lot out of me. My stress levels had also recently been chronically high due to ongoing problems with keeping this website online and running smoothly!

Stress is a factor that should not be dismissed in any disease. Over the past century scientists have gradually unravelled the links between stress and disease. Pioneers such as Hans Seyle in the 1950s showed how the body responds to stressful events by triggering the release of adrenal hormones, adrenaline and noradrenaline in the short-term and cortisol in the longer-term. With the advent of the branch of medicine known as psychoneuroimmunology it has now been established that each system within the body (immune, endocrine, nervous etc) rather than acting independently is in constant bidirectional communication with each of the other systems. As such stress is perceived by the brain/nervous system, which tells the endocrine to secrete various hormones, which bind with receptors on immune cells and direct its action. Unfortunately it is now established that chronic stress through the actions of cortisol and other hormones and hormone-like chemicals (neuropeptides) has the effect of suppressing immunity.

Other factors such as the food we eat can also significantly impact immunity.  One dietary component which is particularly detrimental to the immune system is sugar. Unfortunately during the writing of my dissertation I was in the situation where I either had to give up or rely on a regular sugar fix (mainly from sugary drinks) to keep my brain working and my energy levels up. Ironic I know given my medical conditions and the fact I am studying nutrition - but having tried various more natural solutions to limited effect I was left with no choice if I was to meet the university's inflexible deadline. Rest assured I would not advise anyone do the same but I am extremely stubborn and there was no way I was going to risk my high grade average or drop-out of the course at this late stage! I know I can help myself and others with the knowledge and experience I've gained in the future so I had to get through the course by any means possible. Back to sugar itself - simple sugars in their various forms including glucose, fructose and sucrose have profound effects on leukocytes and immunity. The vast majority of various sugars from the diet are converted to glucose in the body - glucose being the type of sugar in the blood that is primarily used as fuel for the cells. Eating a diet high in sugar leads to high blood glucose levels which in turn increases the production of free radicals and other  damaging chemicals such as advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) in the body. These chemicals can cause miscommunication between immune cells and the activation of genetic transcription factors such as Nuclear Factor KappaB (NF-KappaB) which has potent effects on immune cells and has been linked to viral infection, inflammatory and autoimmune disease, and cancer. Studies have shown high doses of sugar can reduce the ability of leukocytes to engulf bacteria in a process called 'phagocytosis' by up to 50%.

Stress combined with consuming large amounts of sugar therefore has the potential to lower both numbers of immune cells and their ability to function correctly. I'd urge everyone to look into the effects of stress and sugar consumption on immunity in more detail as it's both a fascinating subject and knowledge we as environmental illness sufferers can use to avoid negative influences on our health. 

So, one again, please do not do as I did and take on the amount of work a degree course entails and then resort to sugar to get you through it as I did. I can assure you I am now back to a low carb diet and and meditating more than ever and taking walks in the countryside to manage my stress levels amongst other things!

 

If you suffer from ME/CFS or other environmental/invisible illness and have had some abnormal test results or you always get normal results despite feeling lousy and would like to vent your frustration please leave a comment below. Also if you'd like to discuss factors that impact on immunity go ahead and leave a comment too...

 

 

 

 

About: Matthew Hogg ("Maff")
Diagnosed with M.E./chronic fatigue syndrome aged only 11 years old and subsequently associated illnesses including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS). Despite his own struggles he has constantly sought to educate and support others suffering from such "invisible illnesses" through his website, The Environmental Illness Resource. He fully recovered from MCS using his own approach and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nutritional Health.

 

 

Comments (17)Add Comment
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written by Fay Wilson, May 31, 2010
Thankyou for your lengthy blog about environmental illnesses etc.
I read with much interest about your low white blood cell count.I have been "diagnosed" with that and scared by Dr. saying things like - bone marrow test - which I know from one of my sons is very painful as he had one.
I was put into hospital and given so many blood tests, CT scan, chest xray, and a visit to a haematologist - nothing showed up.
So my Dr. now says I am a cunundrum!! Isn't that the most awful feeling, that I think He thinks I am making it all up.
You have encouraged and helped me tremendously.
Recently I went to a Naturopath who asseses people by a Live blood sample with the simple prick of a finger.
He explained to me that I have leaky gut, I even saw a worm like object wriggling around - so here my problem was solved.
I now know why I had been so tired, no energy, depressed, sore
joints and so it goes on.
I am now feeling so much better after him giving me vitamin B12 by injection there and then, and have had 2 weeks on the tablets and powders.
I am really interested in your studies on nutrition and would love to keep in touch regarding diet etc.
My husband and I eat a raw salad every day, rolled oates for breakfast with lecithin and LSA mix, and we use the a2 milk.
I have pulses and vegetable soup most every night but would love to hear if there is anything else we can add to make our meals variable.
Thankyou again, Fay Wilson.


What an amazing thing -
Maff
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written by Matthew Hogg, June 09, 2010
Hi Fay,

Thank you so much for your response. I'm so glad my blog post was helpful and encouraging to you. Apologies for my slow reply.

I truly believe all of us "conundrums" (in the words of your doctor) can regain our health, or at least enough that we can really enjoy life again. It's just a matter of getting at the root causes of our problems - which can be different for everyone - and treating them appropriately. Of course a healthy diet is the foundation of any attempt to maintain or regain good health and it sounds like you and your husband are doing pretty well in that respect. One thing that immediately strikes me however is a lack of essential fatty acids (EFAs) in your diet which are vital for many bodily functions such as regulating the immune response, the efficiency with which nutrients get into cells and toxins are removed, as well as maintaining brain function. I'd suggest you add nuts and seeds and oily fish to your diet as good sources of EFAs. Small fish such as sardines are best as they contain lower concentrations of mercury. If you are vegetarians then EFA supplements are available that use algae as a source of the omega-3 form rather than fish.

It sounds like your doctor went to town on the tests but it is so frustrating when they come back negative isn't it! Occasionally something shows up but on further investigation we don't fit into any particular box. In your doctor's defence though he may have meant "conundrum" in the nicest possible way rather than as a way of dismissing you as making things up. My doctor also thinks I am an impossible case but he feels as frustrated as I do that he can't help and offers to do all he can. Environmental illnesses are very difficult for all involved!

I'm glad to hear you are doing better on the B12 injections and other treatments. B12 is absorbed at the very end of the small intestine so if there are problems such as leaky gut present B12 absorption really suffers and eventually you can become deficient when liver stores are depleted.

I hope you continue to see benefits from your treatment and it would be great to see you on the site again smilies/smiley.gif
billypil
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written by William(Bill) Pilgrim, June 13, 2010
Hi all, I'm a newcomer here. Don't wish to be negative, but dson't have much good to report except that I have lasted long time. I started to suffer the effects of what was much later diagnosed as CFS and Fibromyalgia, when I was almost 22years of age. This year on Dec. 7 I will "celebrate" my 76th anniversary. My problems started when in 1955 a doctor at an Airforce base in Australia froze my inner right shin to see if it stopped pain in my shin. It didn't, but that gave me an ulceration that had to be scraped clean and took months to heal. By the tme it was healed I had large blisters on and below my foot and migratory thrombo phlebitis in my leg up to the groin and on top of that I had bouts of tachicardia (up to 200 bpm) and all over body aches, with tremendous fatigue. There has been minor let-ups but it has never left me. I used to be very athletic and enjoyed running distance, bicycle racing, represented my school at the State sports and just prior to the problem, I could press my own weight.

Now I have CAD with CABGs in 1981 and 1997, followed by a TIA during 1981 & a stent in 2007. I suffer from Complex apneas(obstructive & central), multiple bouts of pneumonia plus pseudomonas lung infection, bundled branch block wand now a pacemaker, still with Atrial fibrillation, I have had spinal surgery ( unsuccessful) with metal rods up my spine.

Following my TIA when I drove my car through heavy traffic for 6 or 7 miles without knowing anything about it. I was thought at first to be drunk as I couldn't walk or talk properly. I got over it partly and was told to get safer work, be cause it could happen again. I studied and became a Technical Teacher after I turned 51.

I don't hold oput any hope of being cured now, but I am glad I put up with my problems and didn't stop. One doctor stopped me once and told me I would never get well without stopping, but I only became worse over two years, so I managed to force myself back, into my teaching job and that was the only time missed until I was made redundant July 4 1997. It is my belief that if I had stopped fully, then I would never have started again. I am finding it harder now, as I am having more problems with recall and also stiffening of my whole body.

Perhaps you are different, but I suggest you don't let this thing beat you.

Bill from Australia
Maff
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written by Matthew Hogg, June 14, 2010
Hi Bill,

Thank you so much for sharing your story. You clearly have great courage and desire to live as much of a normal life as possible despite some very serious health concerns. I think many people will be in awe of what you have accomplished with your life through constant physical adversity and you can count me among them!

I personally have no intentions of letting ME/CFS and environmental illness beat me and believe that the best way to deal with any chronic illness is to remain as active as possible, both physically and mentally, and to pursue those things in life that bring happiness and a sense of achievement and satisfaction. There is nothing worse for the spirit and overall health and well-being than giving in or "settling" for less than you are worth in life. You seem to be a testament to this Bill.

Thanks again for sharing with us and all the best for the future.

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written by eva , June 28, 2010
Hello, I am a newcomer here too. I'm Spanish, 33 years old, and afer 10 years suffering from chronique fatigue, last year came the sensititives, for me the awful part of the hole thing. So last december I was diagnosed with MCS and CFS. Unfortunately in Spain there is little thing to be done. Doctors told me there's nothing to do, apart from avoiding "all chemicals", they told me to isolate and to try to live this way for ever. After seven months of sorrow, I have decide to fight against it. So finding this webpage and people like you has given me a lot of strenght to go on with my life. Now we are looking for treatment, and I know of a hospital in England called Breakspear that deal with this kind of illnesses. Also the Enviromental Health center in Dallas is very popular in Spain among the chemically sensitive patients. I've read that you managed to recover from your sensitivities. That's what I long for!! I also have Irritable bowell, leaky gut, and lots of digestive problems. Any help??
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written by Bill P. from Oz, July 06, 2010
Perhaps one day there will be enough thought by someone clever enough to correlate all the facts that have affected us all. In the meantime I guess we will have to keep trying to work out our best way forward through it all, by telling each other what works for us.

I know that over the years I have tried many things, but the only consistant supplement I have taken is Vit E. I don't know if any one has read up on Professor Pall. I think his first name is Martin. I suggest you Google for him and read up on his research suppositions regarding the "Nitrous Oxide cycle". As I am able I am going to find the supplements he suggests and test his theories on myself. What he says certasinly seems to make sense to me. Please tell me if you can't find him and I shall forward information to you. If you do want to contasct me and I am not finding your response my address is billypil@bigpond.net.au, I suggest however that what we do that we also remain in contasct on this forum
Regards
Bill P from Oz
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written by Carole Johnson, September 08, 2010
I have found your writings encouraging, plus the comments from one person that there was talk of bone marrow tests.Have had this disease for three years, I was 62 when I felt that I had been hit by a truck.I have found a lot of negativity both in the medical profession and generally 'all in your head' springs to mind!I found only recently someone who specialises in this condition and am still seeing him, its a relief to be taken seriously.I have just got my head round the fact that this condition may be for always and have been doing very well until yesterday.My specialist asked for 12 or so blood tests back in May,3 of which were abnormal, white blood cells, kidney and sedimentation.I was told not to worry by my specialist but he requested the same three tests be taken last week, before I see him this week.I collected the blood test results yesterday only to read that the blood work doctor has said 'the neutrophil count has fallen further,there are no diagnostic features but monocytopaenia $ macrocytosis make me suspicious of a possible low grade lymphoid malignancy such as hairy cell leukaemia.What is the basis for diagnosis of chronic fatigue?'To say that my chin is on the floor is an understatement.Anyone else had this happen?Is this normal to have this sort of feedback or do I now have to get my head round another condition?
A very frightened Carole
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written by Lori, October 16, 2010
Hello, I came across your website trying to find information about adrenal fatigue. I was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome about 14 years ago. This was after major stressful events in my life. I finally knew after seeing the doctor thinking it was my thyroid (which eventually it was), and they all told me I was depressed. I knew I wasn't depressed.

Anyway, the last 5 years or so I have been undergoing much stress, family, financial, you name it. I started experiencing weird symptoms like sweating profusely after having my morning coffee or getting really weird dizzy spells after my morning coffee, not to mention ringing in my ears, and seeing light when closing my eyes to sleep at night. I looked these things up and it sent me to adrenal fatigue symptoms. (I worked long hours, 10-12 4 days a week cramming in as much typing as I could, medical transcriber, in order to be considered for my benefits, about 26,000 words a day. It was stressful too).

I picked up some adrenal support and the symptoms sort of went away, and I went on with my daily routine.

I lost my job in February, about 8 months ago and was looking for local jobs where I live, and was offered a scholarship for school. I have been doing school on line, pretty intense, and also still looking for work. I have been under some major stressors again personally too, along with financially.

Anyway, I went to Zumba and I felt fine, was breathing fine when I did the class. Afterwards my blood pressure dropped suddenly and I passed out briefly. My blood pressure has been low since then and my pulse too. I have exhaustion and the light thing at night.

I had previously had blood work for adrenals but nothing came up. Also, of note, my gynecologist put me on thyroid years ago because my hair kept falling out and I was so tired. My lab work showed low whites and reds, I need to find that lab work. Low leukocytes, etc, just as you have spoken of.

Of course, the doctors all think I am crazy, menopausal, or depressed, so I don't even bother going any more.

But, the passing out concerns me. I am a person who doesn't let things get her down, I am definitely not lazy; but, this has gotten me good.

Any advice or thoughts are welcome.
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written by HANETTE, March 04, 2011
Hi, your blog is giving me hope and some strength. Last year November I was diagnosed with a CTS it took 5years to come up with that after so many complaints and visits to Dr, the pass 4 years is been very stressful for me, just last week I was told at the surgery that my white blood cell count is very low, am very confuse and don't know what to do about this am having pain on my joints very tired cramping pain, nerves pinched this became worst after having a C-session 13 months ago. the Homeopath put on vitamin B6 please with your experience share some advice with
Appreciate
Maff
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written by Matthew Hogg, March 06, 2011
Hello all,

Please accept my apologies for not replying to your messages for so long. As you will have noticed if you are a frequent visitor to the site - I have been very busy re-designing everything. I will never learn as this has caused a great deal of stress with lots of teething problems to resolve. Hopefully I am on top of things now.

I'm so pleased to see that so many of you have found this blog either interesting or helpful. I would agree with Bill P that Martin Pall is an excellent researcher and many people are reporting success with his treatment protocol for ME/CFS, fibromyalgia, MCS and other environmental Illnesses. The great point is that it is based on antioxidants and it is intended to correct a disturbed cycle at the root of these illnesses, so is potentially both moreeffective and substantially cheaper than other treatments. Many of Professor Pall's articles are published here on EiR (lgo to Information > Articles and in the MCS and ME/CFS categories look for articles with 'nitric oxide', 'NO' and 'NO ONOO' in the title).

As Eva mentioned, Breakspear here in the UK and the Environmental Health Center in Dallas in the US are well regarded by environmental illness sufferers. In fact I am trying at the moment to get a referral to Breakspear through my GP. Unfortunately these places are frighteningly expensive if you have to pay for them yourself!

We are suffering from extremely complex illnesses here but doctors and researchers are making headway and the information we share with each other is equally as valuable in my opinion. Some things I feel are important to address are the infections (including viruses, Lyme, gut dysbiosis etc), leaky gut syndrome, methylation cycle issues, nitric oxide (Martin Pall), hormonal problems (particularly adrenal and thyroid), neurotransmitter imbalances, allergies and sensitivities, energy production problems/mitochondrial health, fatty acid balance, and general nutritional status.

Lori, I would see a naturopathic doctor or one practising nutritional or environmental medicine, or even a nutritionist/nutritional therapist, as they will use the Adrenal Stress Index (ASI), a saliva test that tracks adrenal hormone levels throughout a whole day. Much more helpful than one off blood tests.

Personally, I am currently planning to undertake low-dose naltrexone (LDN) therapy which is intended to balance the immune system and help to restore normal function. It may also help with mood and energy as it works by increasing production of endorphins by the body. I also plan to travl to the Probiotic Therapy Research Centre in Sydney, Australia, for Human Probiotic Infusion (HPI) treatment. This is designed to restore healthy flora to the gut - as I am sure many of you know, healthy gut flora is essential to immune function, good mental and emotional health, and basically the overall health of the body. Gut dysbiosis has been a huge issue for me and the major driver of my symptoms for most of my illness in my opinion. I guess the proof will be in my response to these treatments!

It would be great to hear how you are all getting on and do let us know if you have had any treatment successes (or indeed failures).

Best of health!
saratronic
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written by Sarah T, March 15, 2011
3 years ago my WBC count when down lower than yours for 4 consecutive measurements over a period of 3 months. My neutrophil count when down to 1.1 and total to 2.9. I was referred to a haematologist who said i had had a virus. this happened to me before when i was 14. I am now 30. I have had ME/CFS/fibro since I was around 14 years old. I think mine is linked to vaccines as my second bout of overwhelming ME and pain and low WBC counts came shortly after a series of vaccines before I went to Asia.
Haematolgoist did nothing at all and was baffled and just said it was "one of those things". My fibro pain has subsided in the last 6 months although I am still ridiculously tired all of the time. All other tests proved fine except my lungs are not exchanging gases properly and I have developed severe GERD and frequently (once - twice a day) bring food up into my mouth and have a permanent sore throat and bunged up nose.

What is going on? I am in the UK and have found the NHS to be be pants. I have been passed from doc to doc with no diagnosis really, just continuous testing. ANy ideas? Similar stories?
Thanks : ) I still manage to work nearly full time by the way although I was off work for around 6 months at my peak a few years ago! I thought Id never get better but have improved to 75% of what I consider to be "normal"
Maff
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written by Matthew Hogg, March 16, 2011
Hi saratronic, first of all great to hear that you have at least got to 75% of what you feel is normal. Very happy for you and hope you continue to improve smilies/smiley.gif

Sounds like your white blood cells were significantly below the normal range. It never ceases to amaze me how we ME/CFS/fibro sufferers can get dismissed so easily...even when we have abnormal results on routine tests. These illnesses have been clearly demonstrated to involve immune system dysfunction yet when we have abnormal numbers of immune cells they don't make the connection and it's just "one of those things"? Madness!

I can't say my illness was triggered by vaccines but I did have adverse reactions to tetanus and TB jabs I was given at school during my teens. My arm swelled up like a balloon and I felt very flu-like for a couple of weeks after each. We don't know what is going on with our immune systems when we have ME/CFS/fibro so not a good idea to mess with them with vaccines...

The NHS really is useless. I need to go back to my GP to put more pressure on for a referral to Breakspear.

Have you had any tests relating to the GERD and associated symptoms? I would expect you really need a tests looking for the root cause of it. If you can't get it done on the NHS then Biolab in London is good for this stuff (if you can afford!).
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written by Crystalcr, April 10, 2011
Hello all! I happened to find this blog searching for help on increasing my motivation. I to have symptoms of fatigue. It started for me the beginning of the year when all I wanted to do was sleep, started not caring about the things I did, work, parenting, hobbies, ect. I went to the dr and we thought I could be depressed. She also took a blood test. Results turned out to be low on my WBC. I took another blood test a month later, still low on the WBC. Obviously I wasn't depressed but had extreme fatigue. She referred me to a hematologist who decided I should have an ultrasound of my abdomen. I am waiting the results.
The only symptom I have is fatigue, no other symptoms I am aware of. I have to force myself to get up and do the necessary things in life. I bought vitamins, b12, and recently started drinking zip fizz. I also have very green powder which has superfoods and probiotics. I try and drink that daily. It is a little weird to me that since having low WBL that I would be sick since my immune system is low, well I haven't been sick at all, not even a cold. I have no pain or any other concerns. After reading all your stories I am so praying this doesn't go on much longer. I feel my life is just passing me by slowly by slowly and I am not part of it. Any suggestions would be appreciated? You all have inspired me to get up today and get at least 2 things done.
lynnlynn
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written by lynnlynn, August 30, 2011
I supposedly fell ill with borrelia infection (lyme disease) 4 years ago but didn't find out until two years ago that it was probably that. It was constant fatigue, excessive sleeping, low fevers, mild body aches and some other problems. I successfully overcame the long term suspected borrelia infection a year ago (after 3 years) after I found a Chinese medicine expert, who also figured out I had a parasite infection and impaired adrenal function. The long term infection did eventually seem to destroy my immune system, but it seems to be starting to recover a year later.

So, in my experience, the biggest mistake I made was trying to use medical doctors for this type of illness. Medical doctors lack the training or experience to deal with these long term infections. Medical doctors depend on lab tests, so when you are sick with something that doesn't show up on lab tests, they aren't trained on what to do and often then make mistakes because they try to label you as having something that they were taught about, rather than understanding there are serious illnesses that they don't know anything about. You actually end up sicker for a longer period of time by trying to use medical doctors.

You have to keep searching for alternative medical options until you find something that works for you.

What I found with a Chinese medicine expert is that they are trained to understand how your body is or isn't functioning without much dependency on lab testing. So they can treat these complex infections that doctors can't. They try to get your body back to a functional healthy state. Think about it. Chinese medicine has been around for centuries, long before lab tests. They had to figure out how to treat illnesses without having any lab tests.

I would encourage anyone with a long term illness or infection to find a good Chinese medicine expert and try their recommended treatments for six months or so and see if it helps. I was so far gone by the time I started, it took about 6 months to recover from the long term infection.

The biggest problem we, the people who suffer from these long term infections and illnesses, have is that we tend to have the same mentality as medical doctors in thinking that treating illness is about lab testing and taking drugs. It isn't, and it doesn't work, and it can make you sicker. Try alternative medicine, such as Chinese. And take nutritioinal supplements and do everything you can to get your immune system to function well. This isn't stuff a medical doctor can do.
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written by pratik, December 15, 2011
Hey maff,
I have been suffering with bacterial overgrowth issues for the last five years. The Antibiotics and the anti acid treatments and the testing procedures have got to me and I grow more and more impatient everyday.
However, I've tried to avoid the antibiotic and anti acid medication over the years as much as I can. I mostly tried to use alternative meds like homeopathy and other herbal stuff with no better results than the the antibiotics. My blood work on the contrary always brings up that my WBC count is usually on the higher side. I am pretty much as stressed as anyone else who is trying to live a normal life and fight the stomach trouble at the same time and I also suffer from food allergies due to mal-absorption and stress. Till the last year, my wbc count was usually closer to the higher 11000 mark..it would range from 8500 to 10000..but this year..it went up to 13400 which is causing me great concern. All the people who've posted stuff on this page say that there's a drop in their wbc which makes me feel more concerned. My doctor tells me that the higher wbc is indicating the body's response to allergies and the infection cause by bacterial overgrowth and intestinal distention..I am a little worried since our problems seem similar but the body's response is not quite the same as yours. I am worried and I hope to get through these problems soon enough and wish all the others suffering with all this wierdness and running around the doctors the same.
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written by Tonja, February 26, 2012
Hi there.. stumbled on your blog because recently I had a lab test come back with a really low neutrophil count and the doctor is going to do a re-test in a month. I am trying to figure out what might cause this and have been reading and reading (and reading). Of course, stuff like leukemia and lupus comes up.... but barring those, I wanted to know if diet affected it. You mention sugar and another site mentions carbs in general.... but get this... 1.5 months prior to my bloodwork I went completely Paleo. This means barely any sugar or carbs.. mostly grass-fed meats, veggies, some fruit and nuts. So as for cutting back on carbs/sugar - I can't really as I work out and need SOME (from starchy veggies, sweet potatoes, fruits, etc).

Anyway, just thought I'd share smilies/smiley.gif

WBC results below - I've always been on the low range of everything.. first time neutrophils went to 1.3 (were 2.1 last time)

Component Neutrophils %, automated count
Your result 38
Standard range 41 - 81
Units %
Component Lymphocytes %, automated count
Your result 45
Standard range 13 - 46
Units %
Component Monos %, auto
Your result 12
Standard range 4 - 12
Units %
Component Eosinophils %, automated count
Your result 3
Standard range 0 - 4
Units %
Component Basophils %, automated count
Your result 2
Standard range 0 - 1
Units %
Component Neutrophils auto count
Your result 1.3
Standard range 2.1 - 7.7
Units K/uL
0
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written by jackdaw, May 12, 2012
Hi stumbled across this site when trying to get answers for CFS. In September I had cystitus and required three doses of antibiotics to clear. A short time later a developed Chronic fatigue. Had blood tets taken and all came back clear again after a few months I went back to doctor who again did the full range of blood tests and again everything came back clear. Last week I went back after spending four days in bed with CFS. I only have the fatigue and occasionally stomach pain. She did a test for wheat allergy and full blood count. Received a phone call from surgery to say that my white cell blood count was slightly low and to go back in another month for another blood test. I am also on water tablets. Does anyone know if taking diuretics can cause low WBC or do you think this is down to CFS. Can anyone help me understand this.

Thanks

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