Is this for real? Please, somebody, pinch me!
Hah! I get to use that opening after all.
May 5, 2017 CT Scan Day 11:30 a.m.
Being with the One-Man-Band Onc also known as Team Smiley, I did not know exactly what to expect. But with all my CT Scan experience at 4 university hospitals, I figured, there would be the 4-hour fast before the CT Scan procedure, which normally takes 5 to 8 minutes. I had been told to report at the hospital at 9:30 a.m. for processing. I surmised if the CT Scan started at 11:30 a.m. I should be out of the hospital by 11:45 a.m.
Surprise! Right after completing the insurance paperwork at 10:45 a.m., a twentysomething female nurse assistant escorted me to the Radiology department. A male technician, 30’s, in hospital blues, led me to a tiny room separated from the rest of the world by a colorful curtain and handed me two bottles of barium berry-flavored drink. He said, Start drinking the first bottle at 11:00 a.m. Drink it over a 30-minute period, which means ending the drinking at 11:30. Take a 30-minute break, then start the second bottle. Drink it slowly for 30 minutes, or until 12:00 noon.
I did everything according to the instructions. After drinking all the berry-flavored yuck, I went outside the curtain to turn over the empty bottles and hopefully get started with the CT Scan. There was not one soul in the room. I had been abandoned! With the two empty bottles in my hands, I paced the floor frantically, like a wino needing her fix badly. Finally, a tall Anglo man, wearing a hospital mask, entered the room. He asked, Can I help you? I answered, What do I do with these empty bottles? I’m done and ready for the CT Scan. He said, Put them in the trash can. I asked how about the scan? He replied, Someone will get you. Sure enough at 12:30 p.m., the technician in hospital blues reappeared. He led me to the CT scan room and worked the CT Scan machine.
CT Scan is CT Scan in any hospital. I have already memorized the instructions: Take a normal breath, hold……….Carry on with your breathing. I am always happy to hear that I have the permission to breathe again.
May 8, 2017 Result Day
Dr Smiley’s Registered Nurse left a message on my smartphone, giving the result of the CT Scan, and telling me to call her if I had any questions. I returned her call. At first, she could not remember who I was because she had made many calls to various patients. I asked her questions to which her answers were, I don’t know. Finally I asked her, Is the information in the Patient’s Portal? Her answer: I don’t know.
The information is in fact in the Patient’s Portal. Here it goes:
The latest CT Scan images were compared to those of January 2017, done at UCI.
Lungs: Overall improved relative to the January 2017 images. The main pulmonary nodule, the “flying saucer” at the lower left lobe, was 4 mm x 9 mm, reduced from 7 mm x 25 mm. No new or enlarging nodules.
Tagrisso came through for the Tagrisso Tiger! That’s the new title given to me by a fan.
Innards: Mild intrahepatic biliary dilation with prominent common bile duct dilation Stable. No evidence of metastatic lesions. Liver function tests are slightly elevated. Normal bilirubin.
I remember having that intrahepatic biliary dilation when I was in the CO-1686 trial. It resolved. Here it is https://celpeggy.wordpress.com/2015/02/02/my-co-1686-ctscan-report-says-nothing-grew-something-new/ If the link does not work, it’s in the February 2015 post in the archive.
Dr Smiley wrote that he will request the insurance company to get an MRI of the liver anyway, regardless of the radiologist’s statement of No evidence of metastatic lesions. Isn’t he sweet!
There was no mention of the occupier of the adrenal. It must have resolved.
That’s it. No After-CT-Scan consultation with Dr Smiley. It’s kind of different from what I’m used to.