Saturday, October 31, 2009

Meeting with the surgeon, Dr. Quiros.

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Thanks to Sue at the breast health center, we got in to see Dr. Quiros in two days!  I told you she’s the best.  We’d researched Dr. Roderick Quiros, & boy, does he have quite the resume.  I was confident that we’d picked the best doctor in the area.  Here’s his picture:





We drove up on Friday, October 23rd, & pulled into a large, newly constructed medical campus.  They had valet service, can ya’ believe it?  Not that Matt would use it, but, still.  Up to Dr. Quiros’ office we go.

When we opened the door, the first thing that struck me was that “new office smell”.   And the second thing I noticed was that no one was there.  No, I take that back.  There was a construction worker on a ladder, who kept eyeing us as if to say, “Um, folks, do I look like a doctor to you?”  I’m thinking, you just keep working on that light fixture there, Gilligan.  I’m liking the view.  He was kind of cute – just saying!  Besides, you really never know what dumb thing goes through your mind during stress.  And since so many dumb things go through my mind on a daily basis, I probably shouldn’t have been surprised.

We began to get nervous that we had the wrong day, place or time (which would surprise no one who knows me).  Thankfully, one of the nurses came in & explained that the doctor had been held up in surgery & the staff got caught in traffic.  She apologized profusely, & then did something I never expected.  She gave us $20.00 worth of meal vouchers for the hospital cafeteria.  It’s no Mexican restaurant, but, it was an amazing gesture.  And it was indicative of the type of people I was trusting my life with.

We were called into the exam room, & as we walked, I could have sworn I heard the music from Chopin’s “Funeral March”.  We went into the room, & the doctor’s nurse sat & spoke with us.  She was very sweet, but Matt was anxious to speak to the “man”.  She gave me the usual examining gown; you know, the one that never fits, is a God awful colour & smells of antiseptic.  Thankfully, I could keep my jeans on.  After having over 10 abdominal surgeries, the only thing attractive about my lower half is my underwear – when I’m wearing a good pair.

Finally, the door opened, & in walked Dr. Q.  It struck me that I’m at that point in life where I’m older than my doctors.  Remember Skippy the Radiologist? 

He was very nice, & had me hop up on the exam table.  He looked in my nose & mouth, then started on my neck.  Now, at this point, I thought he was heading for my boobs, so I shrug off the gown.  He gently put it back on me & said that he doesn’t need to see the girls just then.  Turns out, he was feeling my lymph nodes.  Hey, I was trying to be helpful here!

Finally, it’s time to look at the twins.  Dr. Quiros asked me to put my hands on my hips & he struck a pose that reminded me of Yul Brynner in “The King & I”.  So, I did.  And, as I did, the only thing I could think to do was say, “Ta Dah!  Myyyy booobies!”

The doctor managed to keep a straight face, almost, but I thought the nurse & Matt were going to pee their pants trying not to laugh.  The rest of the exam went without incident.  I’m not too sure, though, as I’m fairly sure I was babbling the entire time.

After the exam, the doctor sat down with us & said that I needed a mastectomy.  Thankfully, he didn’t feel any swelling in my lymph nodes, although, he may have been trying not to laugh so hard he couldn’t tell.  But, that was a good sign.  Still, he’s concerned about the small nodule they saw on my left breast (which we’ve nicknamed “Ol’ Lefty" right now).  To be sure that it’s nothing, as the radiologist thought, he wants me to get an MRI.  Also, the MRI will help him tell if the cancer has spread to any other areas.

At that time, we discussed reconstruction.  Dr. Quiros feels that beginning reconstruction at the time of the mastectomy is the best idea.  For me, there wasn’t any other choice.  It’s going to be hard enough to lose Ol’ Righty, so, getting the reconstruction thingy going asap is the only option for me.

We ended our meeting, & both Matt & I felt comfortable with Dr. Quiros & his incredibly wonderful staff.  I’m really beginning to think that if you work in the cancer area of medicine, you have to be unbelievably kind.  At least, that’s what I’ve encountered at every step of the way on this journey.  Of course, you know if someone irritates me, I’ll tell on them here.

Truth be told, I’m having business cards made (Matt makes them in the business center) to hand out at future appointments.  The cards serve two purposes – one, to let them know why my daughter, Elyse (who’s a professional photographer), is bringing a camera along to take their pictures (that I’ll be posting here).  And the other is to remind them that I can tell on them.  Hah!  I’d bet even Brun Hilda would be on her best behaviour.  Oh, & let me know if you want a few for yourself.  You can put your own stuff on them, or you can threaten that you’ll sic me on them!  Remember, I still write for Examiner!
 
Well, now you’re up to date on what’s been going on.  Right now, I’m doing the insurance samba to get the MRI paid for.  I’ve got major medical, but I only have $1,000.00 in diagnostics per year.  I blew through that budget at the first mammogram & ultrasound.  Sue Folk signed me up with a program for “underinsured” women.  I’ve been accepted, but we’re wading through a sea of red tape.  I think “wading” isn’t the best choice of words.  “Drowning” is more like it.  I’ll keep you posted on that.

Up next, I’m meeting with the plastic surgeon on Wednesday, November 4th.  Hmmm.  Wonder what dumb thing I’ll manage to do or say then?  Whatever it is, you know that I’ll tell you every embarrassing detail.  I’m not called The Brunette Lucy for nothing!

Here’s the link for Chopin’s Funeral March, just in case you weren’t sure what I was referencing:

2 comments:

hungeryjack said...

Nice post - tongue cancer pictures ..Keep Posting


Ron
tongue cancer pictures

hungeryjack said...

Nice post - breast reconstruction pictures ..Keep Posting


Ron
breast reconstruction pictures

 
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