Today I saw a gynocologist at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. She had been in practice over 30 years. She was sort of that cold, hardened, brash type, well, you can picture her. (I do not mean any disrespect at all to our fine women serving in the US military.) But, with 30 years under her belt, I figured I was in good hands.
She, without even doing an exam wanted to tell me I should have my ovaries shut down (this due more in part, I suspect to my breast cancer history being positive for hormone stimulation), and I explained that my oncologist and I have discussed that and that was not the reason for my visit today.
I explained the pain I have been having since August and that it is on my side (rib area) and near my navel, and that my oncologist was able to find it precisely when palpating near the navel, and that
it is intermittent, but persistent, daily, and spontaeneous. She did an exam and told me she believed that I may have adhesions of the uterus but that the chances of them causing problems now 16 years after my last c-section was pretty slim, and that if that is the cause of this pain they would have to take the whole uterus and ovary anyway. Wait, but didn’t she just say she didn’t think that was the cause of this pain? I think she just wants my ovary! Maybe she keeps them in a jar on her shelf or something. Strange! Oh yeah, and then she proceeded to tell me to stop all coffee and diet cokes for a month and that may be the cause of this. Huh? Then she said that the pain on my side might be “gas”. I said, “For 4 and a half MONTHS?” Really?
Never once did she palpate the area of my pain. Only the area of the uterus and ovary, which doesn’t hurt at all. My oncologist had suggested an abdominal AND pelvic mri but this gynocologist only put in for the pelvic stating that gyn is her specialty. So I now have a message in to my oncologist to ask him if he might spare me a trip and put in for the abdominal mri along with the pelvic mri which is scheudled for the 12th of January.
Round and round and round we go – where this stops, nobody knows!
Christmas is comin’! Ready or not! This week I am buried in orders from The Taffy Box and my sons are coming home from college, we are hosting a party, attending a party, cleaning, baking, shopping, wrapping, cards to write, cards to read, it is FREEZING, and today I have a long day of appointments with both my oncologist and breast surgeon. Maybe you feel like I do – I DO NOT HAVE TIME FOR THIS!! UPDATE BELOW
Funny how when we read a point like this an e-mail enters our inbox and speaks to us right where we are? That is when I received this video link. (Heather Williams wrote this song after losing her infant son to a heart defect. ) I always reach this point every Christmas when I realize that in the flurry of it all, I tend to forget when Christmas is really all about, and whether or not you believe in Christ, He IS the meaning of CHRISTmas, and is WHY we celebrate! Somehow just stopping to listen to this song made me see how God inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3). In singing, in worshiping, THAT is how we find Him! So as I rush around today trying to accomplish it all, I will try to take time to pray these words myself, and remember who is in my Christmas. In my busy-ness I think I have been trying to crowd out thoughts about my physical health, and in the process have crowded out God. I’ve been brought back to Him today. I need Him. I’ll update later as to how my appointments go…we are re-evaluating where to go from here in determining the source of this ongoing abdominal pain as well as a 3 month follow up with my breast surgeon.
Update:My oncologist is referring me to a gynecologist to see if perhaps the pain I am having is related to something below the liver, but he was concerned about the extreme pain I have when my abdomen is pressed upon and wants to do an abdominal MRI if the gynecological work up does not reveal anything. He is working to get me in to see one of his gyn colleagues at Walter Reed since my own doctor cannot get me in for several weeks. I appreciate your continued prayers! If you can’t see the video below, click on the word “video link” above
Today was my colonoscopy. This was after 2 straight days of not eating. Needless to stay I was a wee bit grumpy to start with. Up all night as the prep took affect, then fasting with no coffee this morning, but I made it and had looked so forward to having the answers I have desperately been seeking for 4 months. Why this pain in my abdomen? The nurse who started my IV got it going on the first try which was a first! Whew! Hard part down! I waited about 30 – 45 minutes and then they took me back to the room where they sedated me and performed the procedure. This is the same place I had my endoscopies in August and October recently, and according to them the same exact dosing of anesthetic drugs to sedate me. Well, that was a disaster today. I did not fall asleep, in fact I was relaxed and awake and screaming in pain for most all of the 27 minute procedure. At every turn in my colon I felt terrible pain. The doctor kept telling me it would almost be over, and for short periods the pain would pass but then he would have to make another turn. I just couldn’t believe it. I had never heard of this happening to anyone before. After I went back to recovery, the doctor came to speak with me and told me he didn’t find anything to explain the pain I have had for 4 months, nothing to biopsy, nor explanation for the pain during today’s events. He said that if I ever have to have this procedure done again he would recommend general anesthesia since he had given me the highest possible dose today and for some reason it did not do the trick. From what I understand, colonoscopies are not normally painful and so patients generally just dose off to sleep during them. So why so much pain in there? I hope to follow up with all of my questions tomorrow with my g.i. doctor and or oncologist. My g.i. doc was not the one to do today’s test, but maybe he has some ideas. I feel like I have reached a dead end in this pursuit and and I am very frustrated and exhausted from all of my searching and I am no closer to an answer. Only that when I searched on line I am NOT the only patient that this has ever happened to. It’s more common than I realized. I’m going to go eat some ice cream!