Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Blood Work

I've been waiting to write about my latest round of check-ups.

Why? When you have cancer––or did have, in my case––you have to get checked on by ALL your Doctors, get poked, drained, pee in a cup, x-rayed, put in a tube for 25+ minutes, probed, pinched, weighed, measured (am I still growing or am I shrinking?) have a tube shoved up your nose and down your neck and get undressed and dressed about a dozen times in front of complete strangers and open windows.

I'm about one-third of the way through my rounds. I started by going to my GP––Dr. Marc Plescia, the angel who looked at the lump on the right side of my jaw and said, "I don't like this. Let's get you to see Dr. Lee right away."––who always does a thorough job. He's also the Doctor who gets the ball rolling by ordering blood work. Now if you've read my blog and posts before, you know how much I hate needles. And if you've ever had blood taken from your body after you've had cancer, they take a LOT. I felt like I was at a gas station, only they were pumping blood out of me as I was filling up test tube after test tube of blood samples. (I think there were 6 big vials, as I only looked at my arm and what was happening after I was told to "hold this and press here for 30 seconds).

I did this while I was in town for 2 days––purposely for seeing the Doctor and getting the check-ups started––knowing I would be back on the road and that traveling would keep my mind off of the inevitable results report. And that's exactly happened. I forgot to look at my mail. I forgot about the bloodletting. I even forgot about the rash on my arm that I always get from the needle and tape. So how did I remember? My Wife went to pick-up her medication and was promptly handed 2 prescriptions for ME. Vitamin D and cholesterol medication. WTF?

I then went to my stack of mail and pulled out the fat envelope––not to be confused with a phat envelope of some shit I'd really like––and opened. White blood cell count––excellent. Sodium? Cool. 25 other symbols and checks and other crap that was all good. Until I hit LDL and HDL. I guess the road was full of "good eating". And I was full of bad cholesterol. Fucking great. But it did remind me of the time when I asked my oncologist during my chemo treatments about my cholesterol levels and should I be worried about it. Dr. Felice just smiled and said, "we're putting enough stuff into your body where your cholesterol levels should be the least of your worries". So it's either another round of chemo––no thank you––or taking medication.

I think I'll let the medication work through my blood for a while.

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