Home > Cancer > D’oh! My First Post-Diagnosis Trip To The ER

D’oh! My First Post-Diagnosis Trip To The ER

I think I’ve had a wonderful week of cancer-filled fun, but I’ll let you decide for yourself if you agree. So, here goes…

My latest brain MRI in late May said all is well “upstairs“. All three tumors were stable and the swelling around each of them was relatively unchanged.

My latest chest/abdomen/pelvic CT scan in late June indicated that two cancerous lymph nodes have grown large enough so that my concerned oncologist scheduled an appointment with my radiologist to have them Chernobyl-ized soon.

Since I didn’t know how many radiation treatments I’ll soon be having and I felt confident enough to go, I made a hastily planned 4-day trip to Florida to see my family. Of course, they treated me like a king and I enjoyed every second of the experience. Love you guys and gals!

One day after returning from FL, on the day of my scheduled visit to the radiologist, I “forgot” how to tie my shoelaces for a whole minute. Thinking it a bit strange, I nevertheless kept on moving.

I got in my car and shifted my manual transmission (several different times during the drive) but “unknowingly” left it in neutral and wondered why my car slowed down while I cranked the gas pedal to red line rpm range. Before my car stopped moving, I suddenly “figured out” why I was slowing down, I put the car into gear and lurched forward, frantically looking in my rear-view mirror for a car to shh-toop me in the bum. Yay, I did it!

Next, I dropped my notepad 3 times walking from the car to the radiologist’s office only 20 yards away. While in the office, I forgot what my birthday was twice within one minute and I had to X it out on the intake form. Strangely enough, I remembered who the president is when the nurse asked šŸ˜‰ Next, the words I wanted to say started coming out all jumbled up and I relied on my wife for help in completing my sentences.

That “aphasia” was the trigger. While in the radiologist’s office, they called an ambulance and the EMTs gurneyed me out of the place, a la Britney Spears, for all the other cancer patients at the facility to see and get depressed about.

I was taken to the ER and they performed a CT scan and MRI on my brain. They didn’t detect a mini-stroke or anything unusual relative to my previous MRI and they sent me home after 5 hours with steroids to take (yet again). I can’t wait to open the unreadable, lengthy, itemized bill I get from the hospital bureaucrats and see if all the staff they had working on me were all “In Network“.

So, after all those fun and games, I have an appointment with my neurosurgeon on Tuesday, followed by an appointment with my oncologist’s nurse practitioner, also on Tuesday, followed by an Opdivo immunotherapy infusion on Wednesday, followed by another visit to the radiologist on Thursday. Oh, and I had to reschedule a Tuesday appointment with my acupuncturist so I wouldn’t have 3 doctor appointments to go to in one day.

Just think of all the co-pays I’ll be dishing out in the upcoming weeks in addition to the $700 monthly premium I have to pay for health insurance. I have the resources to pay for my healthcare, but it pains me to think about how many less fortunate people would be blown out of the water with the debilitating physical + financial double whammy.

On the bright side, it looks like I may be resurrecting my stoner days from college (and shhhh… my high school days hangin’ out with the kool kids). Whoo hoo! Among other heavenly benefits, cannabis helps me “temporarily forget” the worsening peripheral neuropathy in my feet. It’s way better on the body than drinking (which I have extensive experience doing), dontcha think?

Thanks for listening!

Categories: Cancer
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