So anyway, we all managed to survive the onslaught of kids seeking free candy. Penny is not real fond of children (or people of short enough stature that she thinks they could be children. It’s really fun to watch the show “Pit Boss” with her — between the dogs and the cast, she gets pretty miffed. Also, for some reason, Enbrel and Campbell’s Chunky Soup ads piss her off to no end, too. Don’t ask me.) Norman, who is now old enough to see kids who were trick or treating when we first got him taking their own-too-young-to-get-it kids out now, didn’t take it quite so well as he used to.
The lights had to go off early, because we had to pack up into Boston at an early hour to get my ass cheek re-biopsied. It’s not like Boston is far, of course, but it’s always good to get appointments really frickin’ early thanks to my bad self, traffic flow, and the fact that after ten or eleven in the morning, you’re gonna be hard pressed to find an empty parking garage around the hospitals.
I had half as many people sitting in on this biopsy (the last was done by a fellow with an attending — and lest you think the fellow was a contributing factor to the non-diagnostic nature of the reading — most of the samples were taken by the attending. I knew that much.) I met the doctor, who was the cutest nerdy dude, and man, he loves his job. I mean, it’s cool when you can tell. He was young (and I am saying this so often I am starting to feel geriatric) and so had that little spark that when you asked him something, he was all excited to explain it. He said that it’d be a procedure like last time, where they took four or so cores probably…
Uh, no. They took a lot. A lot.
“Huh…” he says, and then he says he’ll get things reviewed and ready to go.
And they didn’t do it like last time. I roll in, and I am told that I’m going to stay lying on my back this time around, because it might be a better angle (or maybe there’d be less scar tissue to fight with, who knows?) It didn’t hurt. It doesn’t hurt. I didn’t feel the needle pop every time they busted through the muscle with the lidocaine. It didn’t make me jump when they stuck in the needle for the aspirate or the cores and wiggled a bit. And I could walk out on my own — across the street to the garage.
Plus, I could see what they were doing, which was friggin’ cool. I mean, they’d take the picture of the port/guide thing, and then do a poke, and then another image, and the monitors showed the positions of the needle, the actual tumor area close up, and the general “starting point.” I wished I could have kept my glasses on. He took five or six cores, the last two or three of which prompted “ooohs” and “aaaahs” of how awesomely straight on the money he was at grabbing a tissue sample from the middle of the growth from both the radiologist and cytologist. Man, he was beaming over those. He showed me where they were pulled from on the screen (although they were whisked away to the pathologist really quickly this time. I kind of wonder if that wasn’t part of our problem last time, when it seemed there was a swarm of people roaming around the room with slides and vials and blocking doorways and stuff). He said that if there is something that can be learned from this little sucker, it will show in those samples. Of course, there is still a damn good chance that they can’t tell what it is exactly, or why, and that it wouldn’t relate much to start. But the samples were good and clean and quite clearly from the tumor.
The worst part was the IV port in my hand… I have veins that look like they should be kinder than they are. At any rate, my hip and my ass cheek are fine today. My hand is still touchy.