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Hi @fortunateoldman, you have quite a jaded view of the medical system. The doctors that I know, and I have a huge team behind me at this point, don’t order extra tests in the hope if they dig deep enough they’ll find something wrong, just to pad their pockets. I’m sorry if you’ve had that happen. Was this in conjunction with your CLL diagnosis?

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Replies to "Hi @fortunateoldman, you have quite a jaded view of the medical system. The doctors that I..."


My reply was somewhat in jest, but not entirely. But, yes, for several years I would have my annual Medicare exam with blood tests including CBC, CMP, thyroid, lipids, PSA and a few others. Those labs were all relatively normal and every year my doc would say “see you next year”. But yet, I didn’t feel good with low energy, night sweats, itching to name a few.

I always found it interesting that my previous internist never ran an automated or manual differential along with the CBC each year. I then bought a direct-to-consumer CBC panel but with a differential and went to Quest Diagnostics to have it done. When the results came back my lymphocytes were extremely elevated, near 11,000 as I recall, although the CBC overall was reasonably normal.

Then I sent the Quest results to my new internist on MyChart and asked what could be causing my lymphocytosis. His PA called me back immediately and asked if I could come in the next morning. Of course I did and he then ran a myriad of additional tests and referred me to a hematologist/oncologist who ran another battery of blood, imaging, genetic, immune, biopsy, etc. testing. I’m sure you know the drill. It turned out I did have blood cancer like some of my other family members have.

So if I had taken my previous internist's word that I was fine, I never would have discovered I had SLL. It’s definitely worth it to be one’s own advocate.