Monday, August 24, 2015

Facing surgery again - relief is in sight

I got to Dr. Burgess's office at 9:45ish and was treated like very well, not like a problem patient or a whiner, rather like a VIP. I asked the office staff to please let the nursing folks know that if they needed a urine sample that sooner rather than later would be great. They did that almost immediately. I had not taken ibuprofen this morning because I wanted a true visual when he did the cysto. The nurse met me outside the bathroom and walked me across the hall to the other suites where they do their cystocopies. The nurse gave me a dose of Cipro, which is standard for the procedure. Got my lower region nekkid and sat on the table and waited.  He came in and I told him I had a couple things to talk to him about. First, I wanted my United Airlines insurance paperwork. He had just filled it out and listed cancer and chemotherapy and that he recommended I not fly. That's perfect. The other thing was he had suggested Valium. I told him I was taking Ronnie' stuff and he wrote the Rx right then and there with 2 refills. 

Then it was showtime. He fired up the cystoscopy machine and off we went. The stuff looked like stone last time I saw it. Today, it looked like icky stretched out wet cotton strands. Just as much of it. And every time he touched any of it, it bled. While they do this, they introduce water so they can see what's what and that makes me need to go like right now. So, I'm laying there doing the pee pee dance while he's touring the bladder and the other two doctors arrive and the senior starts talking as if I'm paying attention. I'm trying not to pee the table, which I can't anyway because there's a thing blocking any exit. Argh. The senior (Roger Schultz, MD) said something about 1 in a million and that he had only seen this once in his career. Trying to remember details here. Then he mentioned that it had to come out per the quote above. He said they were "obligated to get that out of there." 

Dr. Burgess took the thing out and the two extra doctors left (one [happens to be black; didn't catch his name] didn't really come all the way in and stay because the live show was over), and I made a mad, nekkid ass dash to the bathroom. There was some blood, but I expected that. I got myself dressed and headed for the room the doctor was in.

He wanted to do this surgery as soon as possible. He asked if I minded saying "by patient request, Sentara" which means it will be done near here instead of Newport News. It will be a TURBT again, same surgery, no tumor. He said it does not look like anything that is malignant based on their discussions. He found 4 p.m. on Thursday and asked if I could do that. Remember, I'm sort of in charge this time. I agreed and then laid out a caveat - I asked if I was going to have bladder spasms again. He said probably. I then said I wasn't leaving the hospital without a prescription for pain meds (I later emailed him with the exact pain med that Dr. Hoag had given me). I gently reminded him that I was not a whiner and that now that we know what's going on, I'm ready for it to be over. 

Now I need to decide on whether or not to pursue legal remedy for the period of time that I was considered a whiner and going through "normal healing," which I was not. That is yet to be determined. 

I had a nice talk with Richard after I got home and he's down with the plan too. I will still change urologists when his doctor is in Williamsburg. I shouldn't have to email my doctor directly to get messages to him. It's nice to have that option, but it's wrong. 

Here, later in the day, I am amazed at how the Valium took my stress level down to a reasonable level. I'm also amazed at how just the notion of this maybe being over after Thursday elevated my mood. I haven't been honest with anyone about the amount of pain I've been having. I think soon it will be a thing of the past. 

Allison just offered to dog sit Thursday afternoon and I took her up on it. I'm about to cry with happy. Naw, I'll save that for Friday.

Anyone who is reading this, please cross your fingers and hope this is the answer. 

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