So my Primary Care Physician (PCP) instructed his registered nurse (RN) to get the insurance company’s approval for an ultrasound test for “a cancer survivor who complains of frequent urination.” That would be me. That same day I received the go-ahead.
So compliant senior babe shuffled to the ultrasound place, a room where a pretty young lady technician looking like an Indian – as in India near Pakistan – greeted me with a drop-dead gorgeous smile. I felt so welcome my tummy immediately yearned to be caressed by the warmed jelly of the ultrasound machine sensor.
She handed me a blue floral cotton hospital gown. Wear this gown with opening at the back, she said, promised to be back in a few minutes, and closed the door behind her.
I assumed I had to take it all off because the last time I had an ultrasound, no one gave me a gown. If Miss India had stuck around a couple of seconds longer I would have asked for exact undressing specifications. So I removed everything from my body and wore the gown with the opening at the back. When Miss India returned, she was horrified that my jeans were not showing under the knee-length gown! Put your pants back on! She ordered excitedly and rushed out again.
Not used to seeing a horrified technician, I quickly put my jeans on and laid down face up on the small examination bed. Miss India returned and did her ultrasound motions on my belly.
A week later, RN phoned and told me, There’s nothing wrong with your kidney/bladder. Come to the office and PCP will focus on the urinary tract infection (UTI) angle.
RN gave me a small see-through plastic container with my name and birth date on a paper label. Put some urine in it and give it to the lab downstairs, she instructed me. I was pretty sure she wanted my urine. Excellent idea, I gushed. I’m probably just having a UTI. I haven’t had one of those puppies in a long time.
The following day RN phoned me. There are some white blood cells in your urine, she said. Pick up the cipro antibiotics that I phoned in to your pharmacist.
Little obedient senior babe moseyed on to CVS and picked up the antibiotics. I was to take 2 pills a day for 7 days. But wait there’s more. After 2 days on the pills go back to the lab for a urine test, said RN over the phone. You might not be taking the right antibiotic. What is this, trial and error? I asked in feigned horror. She answered, No! It’s just good to get you started right away on an antibiotic while your urine sample is being cultured to determine the right one.
After 2 days, I did as told. Sure enough I was on the wrong antibiotics. It didn’t fix the urgent and frequent urination of small volume. I was put on a new one for 7 days. It seemed to work but the nasty UTI sensations returned after 3 days. I took another urine test and I was put on a third antibiotic – a sulpha this time – for another 7 days. Hope it works, said RN. Me too, I agreed. I don’t intend to make a career out of taking urine tests.
So far, the sulfa seems to be working. RN told me to take another urine test after I swallow the last pill.
So my conscientious PCP keeps me hopping in retirement. There’s no room for boredom but plenty of time for visualizing successes. Successful treatment, for example.
Always look at the bright side!