Sunday, August 29, 2010

How Do You Track Your Bloodwork?

I'm not sure how many of you are as anal about tracking your bloodwork as I am but I've at least 4 inches of folder containing the various copies of bloodwork and charted results of the numerous tests that I've taken over the past two years.  Right from the beginning (as I am almost at my two year anniversary of wondering WTF a protein spike is) I've been tracking my bloodwork in an excel spreadsheet.  At first I wasn't sure what all the numbers meant but as I've gone along, I've started to get a base understanding of what each means and how it impacts my condition or what it helps identify.

When my friend came down with acute-AML, I started talking about numbers, results, platelets,  RBC, Hemo/Hemato, etc.  He looked at me in wonder and asked how I knew all this.  I told him that within four weeks he would be speaking a language he had never thought of before.  And I was right!

So for those of you wondering what to do with your reams of paper, I am happy to pass along the spreadsheet I am using to help track my data.  I originally did this in excel and then migrated to excel for Mac (lovin it!)  There is a bit of work required to update the charts but it's usually just cut/paste or extending the time the chart covers.  Bottom line, I can help get you setup but you would need to learn a bit of excel to maintain!

Some screen shots with captions below explaining each:
This is a grab of the entry form.  I've set this up to mimic the report I get from the hospital so that the data entry is simple. I've got a script written to copy the data so I can easily paste into the actual database.

The main database simply pastes the data coming from the entry form into the next row.  The hi/low ranges are maintained and the value changes red for hi and blue for low.  This database is the source for the charts and is an easy record for each value in the event you want to look back historically.

I have a few "base" charts that maintain two representative values, show me hi/low ranges and simply chart how I'm doing.  These need to be updated with each entry to include the new date but other than that, it's simple to maintain.

My main chart calls out to the database to get values on two different data points and then charts them for the time frame, shows percentage change for each value and represents the hi/low range within the chart.

If anyone would like a copy of the file, please post a comment with your email address and I'll get back to you as quickly as possible.  I would need one or two sets of results to setup the database for your needs.  Alternatively, I can just send you a blank spreadsheet and you can run with it on your own.  Just let me know.  When I first started all this I was amazed how little there was available to me.  The IMF website has a program (that's not compatible w/ Mac) but their hi/low ranges were always different and the charting ability was limited.  I don't want to dismiss what they've built but I found it easier to create my own.

As I've just had to update this for my move from StV's to MtS, I thought it would be a good time to put this out there for anyone interested.

I'm happy to help where I can.  Best of luck to all and if anyone has their own example of this, please let me know!



Sandy said...

This is impressive and undoubtably very very helpful to those who want to keep their numbers/data. I am forwarding this to a few people who may find it just the ticket for their particular needs. Great job!!!

Sid said...

I keep my bloods on an Excel 2003 spread sheet but have never progressed to graphs and charts.
I am using microsoft windows XP.
Love to try your setup.
My email

Anonymous said...

This looks really helpful. If you could email me a copy that would be great.


Anonymous said...

This is some great work! Could you please send me the template at

Many thanks in advance!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful work! I was diagnosed with MM three months ago and am just finishing my third cycle of chemo. Looking at BMT this winter. I would greatly appreciate an emailed template to Thank you so much for doing this! --Brent

rugbyhubby said...

to: smithsarah658, avitos, mesquits - I need to apologize if I haven't gotten back to you. mesquits i sent an email to your @mac account, please see if it ended up in the spam folder. For each of you, i'm happy to put this together but need to ask a few questions:
1) please let me know your overall comfort with excel
2) are you using excel or numbers (mac)

I will work on getting this together but may be a little delayed as I go in for my bone marrow transplant end of Jan (should have plenty of time to work on this then! :)

you can get back to me at

Anonymous said...

I'd like this as well, been thinkin' there needs to be some kind of website to keep track of all this, but an excel spreadsheet would be a start. Thanks

rugbyhubby said...

hey everyone - i'm on Day8 of my SCT and where I thought I would be doing more I've not quite gotten that motivated! I do have a version of my tracking sheet and am trying to clean this up so that I can then distribute. Updates to come - promise! tx...bill

Shannon said...

I would love a copy also. My email is

Anonymous said...

Was looking for something like this.

Unknown said...

I would love a copy of this!!!

Just what I have been looking for...THANK YOU.

My email is

Anonymous said...

I would love a copy of this. My email is megvaz@hotmail. com

rugbyhubby said...

hey everyone - a big apology for not responding and getting back to everyone sooner. I had my SCT in Jan/Feb and am doing great. However, i'm back at work and with kids, etc I've not had time to finish what I had started. I am reworking my entire database and hoping that I can find a solution that would be iPad friendly. I've gotten stuck on the charting side of things. I know what I need to do but got stuck getting it done. I will try to get on top of this and thank you to all that are reading and looking for something like this.


Zach said...

Hi Bill,

My email is zobront [at] I'd love to have a copy of your spreadsheet to track my bloodwork. Thanks so much for doing this, it's really helpful and amazing.

Spen said...

I would love a copy!

Unknown said...

Hi there,
I would appreciate a copy of your spreadsheet. The IMF database has its limitations, but what you have done is truly excellent! Thank you!

Lara said...

This would be a huge help! Please send a copy to:
Thank you, and wishing you the best.

Anonymous said...

please send a copy to me for excel at
thanks! :) great work!

Anonymous said...

Hello, i just found your spreadsheet. is it still possible to get a copy? i have a dell laptop and an ipad. thanks very much, rick

Anonymous said...

Hi can you please send to me? publicinbox (attt)

thank you

Mr. treviso said...

I'd appreciate a copy of the spreadsheet. Thank you.