changeling times

trials and tribulations of eclectic chicken

Maybe it is…and maybe it isn’t May 28, 2013

Filed under: cancer,home stuff — eclectic chicken @ 3:52 pm
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I’m sure you’re all (three of you) feeling abandoned from lack of posting….but here I am.

The PET scan was last week and I have been waiting for my appointment with the consultant to get the results – and that happened today.

This week is my stress cluster week… results AND moving house on Thursday.

I saw my GP last week and we noted my black dog is back and they suggested anti-depressants again but I’m hoping once I get this week over and done with – that the depression will lift again and all the positive stuff around having my own place will give me a boost.

Sooooo… anyway… appointment today and when I referred, on Facebook, to this being a Schrödinger’s cat of a week I had no idea how close I was to the truth.

The results are that there is still activity around my colon… the PET scan can show cell activity- what it can’t do is distinguish between cancerous cell activity and the sort of activity caused by having an inflammed and thickened colon. As PET scanners are relatively new technology there also aren’t decades of diagnostic interpretation behind it  to be able to make that judgement call… so it won’t get made.

What they are suggesting I do, is go in for another laproscopy (which is heartening) as the ‘mass’ is now small enough to remove through an equally small hole and I get to lose a small section of colon as opposed to the ‘almost a third’ which was on the cards back in the dim and distant days of having a camera up my bum last year in the ‘before we knew it was cancer’ time.

So…it could be cancer…it might not and we won’t know until I’m opened up. (and the removed portion prodded and tested).

My consultant said in the olden days (pre PET scans) or if I was an older person they’d be happy leaving me with the uncertainty… but as a younger person with responsibilities (and who reacts badly to not knowing stuff) surgery looks the best option.

And I think I agree with her.

Right… now on with the packing boxes.

 

 

egads… this glass may not be totally full but actually half empty February 19, 2013

Filed under: cancer — eclectic chicken @ 7:30 pm
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You know what I hate?

When medical bods disagree with each other.

I’m up for my 5th R-CHOP chemo on Thursday and then my consusltant had me down for a CT scan…. and after that they’d make a decision as to whether I’ll be having the rest of a 6 cylce course (ie one more) or an 8 cycle course (3 more) – I’m sure you can guess which I was hoping for.

Today, I turn up for my pre-chemo blood letting and appointment with the consultant and see someone different as my usual bod is off today.

I was in there talking to him for an hour!!!! as opposed to the usual 10 minutes or so…. which was useful as we had a good chat about all sorts of stuff and he drew me diagrams.

But he couldn’t work out why I was down for a CT scan…as that won’t show much at all… he thinks I need another PET scan (which shows up what is dead and what is live tissue).

They can then compare my last PET scan results with the new results and see if the R_CHOP is still making inroads into killing off the lymphoma or if its done as much as it can and is now just holding the bugger at bay from coming back.

So cross fingers that a)consultant A doesn’t come back and change the decision for a second time as nothing makes me feel more uncertain than medics not showing a united front and b)that PET scan B shows a lot less live activity.

If this isn’t the case they’ll ditch the R-CHOP and give me something stronger… shit and death R-CHOP is nasty stuff (so nasty they don’t tend to give it to old or frail people) but I don’t relish the thought of something stronger one little bit.

I’m told they’ll personalise things a lot more if we give up on R-CHOP.. that I may get longer rests between chemo sessions if need be… and to ‘trick’ the cancer they’ll probably give me a dose of chemo thats ten…or 50 (lets just call it umpteen as my memory is so shit) times stronger than my present chemo – a dose that would take about three months to recover from…. but luckily before they do it they take a load of my stem cells and give them back to me afterwards to give a swift boost to getting over the experience.

…..but… the medical man said…obviously taking pity on me making a mess of my mascara and wiping my nose on my hat as I’d forgotten a handkerchief… that’s all hypothetical as your PET scan could be very good.

My own damn fault for being optimistic about all this so far…. a quick glance at the not so optimistic and I’m a bit of a wibbly wobbly wreck.

Cross more fingers, light another candle and turn positive thoughts up to 11 please.

 

NHS, piss-up, brewery October 19, 2012

Filed under: home stuff — eclectic chicken @ 5:37 pm
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Thats probably a tad unfair… they do their best…are under funded…but…

I wonder what would have happened if I’d been the sort of person who just sits back, presumes professionals know what they are doing and let them get on with it?

To be very honest…I do err towards just letting people get on with things, even though I know professionals are just normal people…over worked..distracted etc etc… but this time it was important to poke the NHS along with a pokey stick (especially as Jane and Annie have both said I should be talking to my consultants secretary by this point).

I’m having two scans… the CT and the endoscopy… both fast tracking… both needing to be before I go back to the consultant and the CT needs to come first (meaning the second can be cancelled if necessary dependent on results of the first).

The endoscopy appointment came through like a dream. The day after I saw my consultant I got a letter asking me to phone for an appointment. I did, I left a message, they rang me back…appointment made. Within three days of referral. Followed by my information pack two days later. Brilliant… Fantastic.

I left it a week or so and rang about my CT scan… was told I was in the system, it was being ‘checked out’ by the X-ray department and I should hear soon.

Today, I decided if nothing came in the post I would chase again…. becuase the window in which to fit the CT scan is narrowing fast.

I did ring the consultants secretary. Who said I’d have as much clout as her to chase CT…so I did.

CT tells me my referral has been checked by X-ray and is now being checked with CT.

I pointed out my narrowing window…. told her when my edoscopy is and suggested a little more speed may be needed with my fast tracking to fit the CT scan in.

She checked a different computer sytem to check my endoscopy appointment…. listened to the penny drop and she said she’d chase it up and get back to me.

Nice lady.

She did… within ten minutes she came back proudly with an appointment… 8.45 on the day before the edoscopy, apologised about the early hour and told me they were totally booked up.

I pointed out that one of the major requirements of a pre-endoscopy routine is to remain in close proximity to a toilet for when the world starts dropping out of your bottom and that my regime starts on Thursday evening. When I say narrow window of opportunity next week I’m talking arrow slit and not french door.

Miraculously another (more civilised) appointment appeared as if by magic at 4.30 on Tuesday afternoon.

Brilliant. Fantastic.

But what would have happened if I hadn’t chased… if I’d presumed that the cogs manned by professionals run smoothly.

I hate to think.

 

 
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