Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

Waiting for the lab to post my recent blood work, but I should know better.

I was a week ahead of thinking when I would see the GYN.  I have gotten to where time means almost nothing to me.  I usually don't know the date - it pretty much is irrelevant to me.  So when I made the appointment - I was a week ahead.  But that is actually a good thing.

When I made the appointment for the blood test - I chose the location because I wanted to do it correctly - fasting.  (G and I have a disagreement about this - he doesn't believe fasting it a necessity for the metabolic panel and I have always done it that way). 

When I got there, check in was with a machine that read the driver's license.  New, but ok!  It confirmed I had a 9:30 appointment that was 13 minutes away.  The waiting room was, of course, packed.

The technician came to the door and called Karen Unintelligible.  Twice.  I really didn't understand her and thought it was way early.  She came back and called it again.  I didn't want to make an ass of myself by getting up to respond to the wrong name.

I sat there and finally went to the window.  Sure enough, it was for me, and I was marked as a "walk out."  The lady at the desk was so soft-spoken and the waiting room was loud.  Crying baby, TV, etc.  So I stood on tippy-toes to get my head in as far as I could.

My buttock muscles do not do this often.  I could feel the pull.  So I am beginning to hurt.  AND she couldn't find the doctor's information.  He had sent the orders via email - on a hospital request form that had none of his information on it.  It took a good 15 minutes.  My muscles were screaming.

I got taken back for the collection.  I wondered why this cute, shy girl followed.  Then after the phlebotomist found the vein, she asked that girl if she was ready to do the collection.  Since I ONLY have procedures done in the left arm to avoid a problem on the right because of the mastectomy all those years ago, I was a little worried.  Alas - it went well!

I was told the results would be to my doctor by Monday morning.  Nope.  I knew that was false.  This lab never gets the results out that quickly - ever.  Here we are today and still no results posted.

So it's good I was a week ahead!  Hopefully I can take the recent results with me to the GYN - NEXT WEDNESDAY!

Saturday, September 15, 2018


I always thought my being here was pretty much a secret - especially from family.  Nope.

I have been found.  My granddaughter, looking for pictures of herself, found me!

Katie - what you read here is now between you and me.  And this place is a secret from everyone else in the family!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

And the urologist said

He showed me the CT.  Yes - I have a cyst.  Looks to be fluid filled.  Now sit down for this part because I almost fell off the chair.  The thing is 16 cm.  That is about 6 1/2 inches.

G asked when I had my last pelvic.  It was a while.  I know - that's bad.  But I just procrastinated.

Now the urologist said since it wasn't solid, that is good.  He can't say for sure, but because it isn't solid it probably isn't cancer.

My OB/GYN is retiring at the end of the year, and his office staff are horrible.  So I decided I would go to a new one.  I didn't want to fight with the old ones to get in ASAP.  So I called one highly recommended - who is close to being a neighbor!  I see him next Wednesday.  I told them all the specifics including (since I made sure he is in the same hospital setting) the CT being done. 

Doing further research on postmenopausal ovarian cysts - doing the blood test is normal.  It doesn't necessarily mean there is cancer even though this shows the cancer antibodies that would be produced.  So that part is normal.

So we will see.  I know there is a surgery in my near future.  Labs tomorrow - results hopefully by Wednesday!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

So far - NOT so good

I had the CT today.  The results are back.  And it doesn't look really good.

The oncologist, who is one of three doctors interested in these results, called.  Well, his nurse called because he is only in the office one day a week - and that was yesterday.  The results show a large ovarian cyst on the right side.  He wants me to have a specific blood test - the CA 125. 

I am used to these tests.  With my breast cancer, I have had the CA 27.29 for years.  These tests show "markers" that tumors release.  There are limits that are considered OK.  So I am to have that done - probably on Friday.

But I have an appointment with the urologist tomorrow morning.  I will tell him what the oncologist has said and we will go from there.

The oncologist also said I need to now bring in the OB/GYN.  This thing - whatever it turns out to really be - has to be dealt with.

So you know what I know now.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018


The scan is set for next week.  That was in case there was the IV dye was to be injected.  It was not ordered that way, and the Oncologist office has just been in touch again -but had to leave a message.  The wonderful hospital that was has been sold to a terrible hospital chain who is only interested in the bottom line - not patient care.  They finalized the sale Sept.1 and began laying off people Sept. 1  This was a hospital owned by the doctors and they wanted a very nice hospital.  Guess they are all retirement age and decided to cash out.  It is where I had my mastectomy done eleven years ago.

Yesterday I was worked in to see the urologist the nephrologist wanted me to see.  He confirmed something is pressing on the ureter and urine is backing up into the kidney.  The "who, what, when, and where" will be more determined by the Cat scan.  I will see him the day following the procedure.

He asked if I had been having pain.  With my disintegrating back, no.  I have had pain in that area for thirty years.  It was worse, but I had not gotten a cortisone injection to ease my sciatica, etc in over a year.  I just attributed the pain to all that.  When you get old with your various aches and pains, new ones don't necessarily tip off a problem.  If that were the case, I should see a doctor almost daily!

Seeing this doctor made me happy that all of my doctors are in the professional building associated with the hospital and that I have had the diagnostic testing done there.  I was supposed to pick up the ultrasound from the nephrologist (whose office was next door).  The nephrologist had "pulled some strings" to get me my appointment yesterday.  They had a cancellation over the weekend and I got in.  I left a little early to stop by the nephrologist to get the paperwork and to my surprise THEY WERE CLOSED!!!  They didn't tell me they were closing early and they knew what time I had gotten the appointment!  I was really quite upset.  I was feeling that my meeting with the urologist would not be nearly as productive as I had hoped because he wouldn't have that part of the puzzle.

When he came in, I told him my plight.  He gave me a rather coy smile and said he had the results!  Since this is his main hospital for practice - he can get all records like this!  So that is why I will see him the day after the CT.  He will have those results. 

So in the meantime, I have called the oncologist to make sure (after the nephrologist told me to) that the kidneys are going to be included and that there will be no IV dye used - only oral.  I have been a little put out with my oncologist.  It seems he has become part-time - only having office hours on Tuesdays.  And HE didn't call me with the results of the ultrasound. 

G had a deep blood clot a couple of months ago (DVT) and had seen this doctor for hematology.  The hospital couldn't reach the doctor when he went to the ER.  So he now has another hematologist who is also an oncologist.  I have considered "switching horses in mid-stream" here!

If this turns out to be another cancer, I may go to the world-famous cancer hospital here - M.D. Anderson.  They have cutting-edge technology.  I am afraid that will be a necessity.

Monday, September 03, 2018

Thank you

You offering prayers is so appreciated.

Sitting here waiting for Labor Day holiday to be over is really harder than I expected.  I have been searching Google for answers - like any good technophile would be doing.

I really don't like what I find and am fervently hoping I am wrong.

My right side is the side that has been affected for over forty years with sciatica and other spine problems.  Now, in my worry, I wonder if I have been feeling kidney pain that has added to my discomfort.  It seems like the pains there are worse, but I attributed it to not having PT nor a cortisone injection in several months - actually over a year.

The mind runs wild at times like this. 

Thursday, August 30, 2018

The shock is wearing off

In July, I had my yearly oncologist appointment.  He always calls for blood work - to check the level of the cancer enzyme (?) and the complete metabolic panel.  My kidney function is off.  He sent me for an echo of the kidneys.  He thought there could be some shrinkage.  Never heard the results.

I then had my semi-annual cardiologist appointment. I took him the lab results.  He said it didn't look too bad, and referred me to a nephrologist.

I saw the nephrologist yesterday.  Cutting to the chase she is referring me to a urologist because (and here is the kicker of it all) there is a MASS in my right abdomen that may be pressing on the ureter causing urine to back up into the kidney causing the results I am getting.

I was in shock yesterday.  I was really rather numb.  Today I called the urologist.  He is taking over another practice and can't see me until the end of September.  The nephrologist wants me seen quickly.  I called her office for another referral.  Crickets can be heard at this point.

I called the oncologist.  He is only in the office on Tuesdays.  I called the appointment line to explain what I should do since I never heard a word from him.  THEY got through to a Tiffany - whoever that is.  She FINALLY called back.  He wants me to have a cat scan.  The orders will be faxed over on Tuesday, and I will be called.

It is hitting me.  I may be facing cancer again.  My mind is running rampant.  Could it be (hopefully) a cyst?  Could it just be a mass - fat (that would be something).  Or could it be ovarian cancer?  Am I facing chemo and radiation again - and how advanced is it?  Is that the reason my back has been hurting more than usual?

What I feared was kidney disease and thought I might be facing dialysis has now turned into something that may be far worse.  The numbers DO say it is stage 3 kidney disease, but that might be something that is reversible - once this mass isn't pressing on the ureter.  But it may be so much worse.

I am in a state of panic.  If you can - say a little prayer.