Bless you and your husband. I can sympathise with what you’re both going through at the moment.
Like your husband I was diagnosed nearly 6 years ago, wbc was 330,000 so not that far from your husband. I was prescribed Hydroxy also which took about 4 weeks to get my wbc down to around 14. It was stubborn and required a fairly high dose of the hydroxy. Platelets remained very high until TKI commencement. I had a massive spleen to the size of a rugby ball I was told (the reason I got checked out) to my amazement this returned to its normal size in that same period too. Other than that and some extreme weight loss and night sweats I didn’t put it all together.
Since then I have been prescribed 600mg Nilotinib and my bloods returned to perfect shortly after commencing, they take a bit of time to stabilise I remember them making my wbc around 4 in the early days, they’ve consistently been around 8 which is completely normal.
It took me 2.5 years to reach MMR (0.1%) which caused a fair amount of anxiety and disappointment. We stayed the course and by 2.5 years I was down to 0.07% (MMr) and since this time I’ve had a downward trend to 0.01% (which I am currently) MR4.
The road can be slow and worrisome for a lot of us and rightly so. Make sure your husband is taking care of his mental health as this destroyed mine for the first couple of years.
Thankfully I’ve been in remission for 3 years and the most important take home I can give is that anything 1% or less is considered as extremely safe and in fact if you’re in the US it’s regarded as target met. In the UK their is a bit more emphasis on MMR but everyone will tell you that clinically their is now evidence that being in MMr (0.1%) vs CCYR <= 1% has any detrimental outcome. It took me less than 3 months to hit CCYR. Make sure your husband takes care mentally, lots of hobbies, love and support etc. And although this is scary for all it’s only cancer by definition but in reality it’s reduced to a chronic illness that requires a little helping hand and that’s his TKI. Take as prescribed and don’t miss a dose as much as possible.
I am sure that the story will be similar for your husband but we all understand the worry this causes especially in the early days. 95% of those diagnosed with CML will live and ordinary life quite remarkable statistics.
It takes a while for it all to become normal and for me it’s more of an annoyance now more than anything else. Pop the pills and carry on.
All the best to you and your family.