Expert friend helps pull rank to ensure I get the correct scan

By Erica Russell Watson Thursday, 21 May 2015 13:03 0

15th May

Today has been interesting! I went to have my CAT scan.
A few days prior to this an oncologist friend of mine who works in the private sector took a look at the appointment I had. She was not impressed. My oncologist had requested a very simple scan of just my torso and without any contrast. She said that it would not do as I needed the contrast which is a type of dye that they inject into your veins which helps the resolution of the scan, highlighting everything more clearly. She also insisted that the scan include my abdomen.
She said she was going to try and get the appointment changed. When I arrived today I mentioned to the nurse that perhaps there had been a change to the scan. They checked and said no. So I thought it was now or never. I pulled a bit of rank and file and mentioned a very well-known oncologist in the hospital and said she had requested the change…which was true. In the end they rang my oncologist and she said she was happy to give me the scan as I had requested. This was great news but we will see what she says to me at our appointment next week. At the end of the day, it is my health that is at stake and I’m not going to sit quietly and accept a scan that I have been told is not sufficient after the type of chemo I have been through.
Before the scan you have to drink a glass of water every 10 minutes. Four glasses in total. This helps the dye circulate around your veins. Then it’s time to get ready and lie very still with your hands above your head. Once the line is in and the dye starts to enter your system, you will notice a warm feeling. It isn’t unpleasant, just a little strange. You are moved back and forth through the machine which is rather like a giant donut. You receive instructions on when to breathe and when to hold your breath. It takes about 10 to 15 minutes and then the line is taken out and you can go.
I felt very relieved that I had been given the proper tests and will look forward to next week when I get an overview of my blood analysis and general state post-chemo. I am still waiting to be called for radiotherapy, which should be imminent.
In the meantime, the football matches have to be attended, the sleep-overs organised and a million and one other things, so life goes on. I always think it’s good to keep busy.
Let’s see what the next chapter has in store for me!

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