Posted by: cg00n | May 21, 2008

CAT scan

Another day, another hospital gown, another IV, another medical procedure, another wait for results. Ho hum. I was fortunate that the doctor who did the first piece of surgery booked this thing on the spot: it takes about a month here to get a kick at the CAT. As it was the doctors we saw yesterday asked for some additional areas to be scanned and the radiologists gave us the gears about not FAXing in the request ahead of time. Still, they gave in with good grace.

I had to swallow three doses of ghastly gastro gravis at about midnight last night, 11:30 today and right before the scan at about 1:30. If you’ve never had this stuff Be Thankful. It tastes like some sort of fermented li-chi liquor that is well past its best-before date. Mix it with OJ and you get something almost but not quite entirely unlike grapefruit juice. And the taste really sticks around. Yuck. I also had to agree (well, no one was breaking my arm over it, but you know what I mean) to being injected with some kind of dye before they started the scan. They gave me an info sheet about it which listed possible side effects: nausea, vomiting, itching, hives and maybe your kidneys packing it in for a couple of days, and said that when the dye is injected most people experience:

  • an overall feeling of warmth
  • a metallic taste in the mouth
  • the feeling that you are wetting yourself

Well, anything for a laugh I suppose. In fact I didn’t feel any of the above and as far as I can tell my kidneys are still working OK so the whole thing was a bit of a non-event. I did notice that the scanner was made by Philips and expressed the hope that it wasn’t being run by a Microsoft system. The nice techie lady reassured me, loaded me into the IN tray and in less than five minutes it spat me out again having scanned my chest, abdomen, groin and wallet. Maybe next time I’ll just go to the airport and put myself through as carry-on luggage.

The email and comments keep coming in with words full of hope, inspiration, comfort, encouragement and in a few cases typographical errors. With your help we are gradually getting on top of this monster and our much more positive viewpoint reflects this. For example, three or four weeks ago we would have been panic stricken over a 5-week wait to see the oncologist. Now we see this as a good sign: they obviously don’t expect me to die in the very near future.

See also: Lab reports and CAT scans



  1. Thank you for sharing your experiences on your blog so that your friends (such as myself) can easily stay informed. It is a difficult situation and I wish you did not have to go through this.

    Charles Baudelaire wrote, “What oddities one finds in big cities when one knows how to roam and look. Life swarms with innocent monsters.”

    Reading your blogs makes me think that monsters are not found only in big cities … but also hidden elsewhere … seemingly not present till stumbled upon when they force us to rise to the occasion in order to dismiss them … and if they are innocent it does not prevent them from wrecking havoc.

    When the monster is finally tamed usually we find that it is not necessarily any smaller or less formidable, but we have grown.

  2. All sounding good! Glad I’m keeping up with the progress. 🙂 Keep blogging.

  3. What you can do with a few melanomas and some elevated cholesterol:

    You write a good blog. All the best.

  4. […] all the warnings that came with the stuff they used for contrast during the CAT scan I thought this would be no problem.  In fairness, on the grand scale of things, it wasn’t so […]

  5. You should see me at the Security checkpoints at the airport. I’m not at all embarrassed that they have to do a very thorough wanding and patting, because I have piercings in places…they always seem so apologetic and embarrassed by this. I am blase and slightly amused and patient.

    Once in a great while I pass through without the wanding.

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