Monday, December 13, 2010

MRI and more questions

I’m due to be admitted to MRI today (ward 3) at 2.30pm with the pleurodesis operation happening tomorrow.  I expect to be kept in till Friday so I can be ‘monitored’ for its success and ensure no infection develops.  Although it’s a very ‘routine’ operation, I’m obviously a bit nervous since I’ve never had general anaesthetic before (apart from nitrous oxide for tooth removal as a child)

Appointment with Dr Y at Christie’s on Wed 22nd, but don’t know if this is just tests or whether chemotherapy will start then.   I still have lots of questions that haven’t been answered.  I know it’s difficult for consultants to be precise when every patient’s cancer development and reaction to chemotherapy is different, but they must have records and statistics on which to base some ‘best guesses’.  If they could say that “x% of patients refusing chemotherapy lived for y months” or “n% of patients completing z courses of chemo survived for p months” etc, that would give me something to go on.

I want to know how extensive the patch of cancer cells is (up to now they’ve said its difficult to spot the cells (‘nodules’) on the CT scan).  How will they be able to tell how quickly is it developing?  Can they tell what stage its at (Lancet research information refers to stage 3 and 4 patients surviving less than 2 years)?  Is it likely to spread to other parts of my body?  How come I’m still coughing up blood (which implies something going on inside the lungs) when the cancer cells are on the pleural lining of the lung?  I’m sure I’ll have thought of more questions by 22nd December and I just hope I’ll get some answers.

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