Saturday, March 5, 2005

The life of a cancer survivor

*Read My Cancer Story first!!

You survive cancer; you go through the years of Chest X-Rays and blood tests; you get a cough and you wonder; you have a stomach ache and you grow concerned. Mostly, you live your life and you go forward, but there will always be those moments that seem innocuous to others that can tear you apart.

Having just gotten through my six year check up a few weeks ago, I was scheduled for a CT Scan, which is following guidelines. The scan would cover my abdomen and pelvis and involves a dye contrast and IV. It really is not the worst thing in the world, and as far as cancer check ups in February go, it beats having my doctor grab my crotch looking for anything suspicious. Granted, hands down in that neighborhood can be quite welcome, but Doctor Ken’s are not on my list of desired visitors to my nether regions.

I had the CT Scan a week ago. I got a copy of the report on Thursday and have left two messages for my doctor to call and discuss one area I have questions on. I remember him mentioning small lesions, or was it one lesion, in my liver years ago. He had said that they were common in people and nothing to worry about for the most part.

Still, the report says there are two of them, and I cannot remember if he said there were two way back when. I don’t have copies of the two previous CT Scan reports, which is unlike me not to get all paperwork, so I can’t check measurements either.

His staff said he makes calls in the evenings, and he would definitely call tonight, but it is 8:37 already and the phone is silent.

You start to wonder again. Does he save the hardest calls for last? Did he forget you? Why did the radiologist not compare the film to one of the two scans I had done 6 years ago? I did one of them with this place then, but the report says that they had nothing to compare to.

You watch the clock; you wait; you get annoyed; you get scared. Why hasn’t he called yet?!
The phone rings and its your mom looking for the same information you are waiting for. You’re annoyed because you wanted the call to be the doctor.

He finally calls at 10 P.M., and says they are probably cysts and nothing to worry about. However, there was only one of them 6 years ago. He admits that he should have had you send the old films for comparison and apologizes. He suggests you do that and get an amended report with the comparisons.

It is Saturday morning now and I will go soon to drop off the film and then wait all week for the amended report. I am thrilled with the prospects of worrying all week.

For those of you who wished me well and crossed your fingers, I have happy news today. The comparison report says the two cysts are stable dating back to 1999 and are likely nothing. I don't have the reports from 1999, so I am unsure why my doctor said there was only one six years ago, but I will take the good news and run with it!


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