Another chapter for our medical journal


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First of all, as we traveled across the interstate we counted 11 cars in ditches & 1 semi. We hadn't heard of any bad weather but obviously something happend on that stretch last night; on our return home all but 1 vehicle had been removed. It doesn't take much for I 80 to become treacherous so if there is ever a question of the weather on appoint days we drive over the night before. Once again it was a very long day & unfortunately nothing was accomplished. First of all, they did labs & then we waited. The nurse asked us before drawing the labs if Mike was on any blood thinners & no he is not. After nearly an hr, the nurse came back & asked again about blood thinners & I said NO. She said 1 of the tests came back abnormal & she didn't think the dr would do the CT/biopsy. Another hr past & both the ortho oncologist & radiologist came in & said it was just too risky to attempt the biopsy. The Dr said it was extremely weird that 2 of the blood tests came back normal & the 1 abnormal--they should all have been abnormal considering how bad the abnormal 1 was. They said his blood was too thin & not clotting. This spot is in a VERY difficult area to reach & is surrounded by blood vessels which tend to bleed profusely & with his blood not clotting, should he start bleeding they would not be able to reach it to put pressure on it & stop the bleed. After a good deal of consulting, they decided not to have us return for any biopsy at this time as there is just too much risk to try to reach it right now regardless of the labs. We will return on Feb 8th for another MRI. With all of their heads together they think perhaps his spine needs to be looked at all the way from the brain down; til now they have been focusing on the lesions discovered 2 yrs ago & this new spot lower on the spine but they have not looked at the entire length of the spine. Then we had to go see the lymphoma dr who is also a blood specialist. The first thing she said to us was, "you have enough things wrong with you so you CANNOT have anything wrong with your blood, you just don't need this too." Since he has never had this problem before, she thinks there was either a problem with the lab or with the way the blood was drawn; she does not think there is anything else wrong. All of the blood work had to be repeated & after approx 5 hrs of mostly sitting in various waiting rooms we were sent home. Should there be a problem with this blood they will call us but I'm confident she is right & something went wrong in the lab. The lymphoma dr says she is working closely with the ortho drs & is in agreement that the ENTIRE spine needs to be studied. Both groups of drs agree that the lesion in the intestines & the 1 they are concerned with on the spine are small enough at this time that waiting a few more wks will not be a problem. They have NEVER seen a spine look like this & none of them know what to think. She said the million dollar question is what the heck is happening to this man's spine. It is possible that lymphoma is just beginning in the spine but she doesn't think it will be lymphoma. If it is eventually diagnosed as cancer in the spine, the lymphoma in the intestines will not matter as all focus will be on the spine. It will be difficult to treat but she assured us there are other types of chemo/treatments that they can try. If it can be 100% determined not to be cancer, she says there is another specialist that will attempt to find out what IS happening & try to control it. We figure we have enough problems without taking on any extra risks so waiting a few more wks won't make that much difference. In fact, we've gotten quite used to waiting. So for now, we keep him on pain meds & call if we think something is happening that can't wait. Both drs & the radiologist assured us that no matter what they find or don't find, this spine will not be ignored. Two yrs ago when they said it wasn't cancer, that was all they cared about & there was no further investigation as to what was happening to the spine especially since he wasn't having any pain back then. I do feel that although it may take some time, that eventually we will learn what is happening & maybe we won't be able to fix it, but perhaps we can prevent or at least slow down any further damage. In a few wks, I'll post another update.


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oh KAthyc
I am sorry that you had another bad day. I know they keep asking the same questions I will keep you in my prayers


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Community Sponsor
I'am so sorry an day with no answers, it is so madening. I wonder if any of the medical field knows what they are talking about these days.
I hope you get better answers on your next visit.
Prayers & good thoughts continue for both you & your husband.


Well-Known Member
KathyC & Mike - We are sad that yesterday was so frustrating for you both and our best wishes are extended to you that the year 2010 will finally bring some answers your way. (((HUGS)))


Forever Remembered
Kathy - my head is spinning reading your reports on Mike. Please know that you continue in my prayers that some CORRECT diagnose can be made soon.

Perhaps a dumb question, but can these blood tests (especially the abnormal one) be done near home, or are they so specialized that you need to go elsewhere for them?


Trivia Specialist
Kathy...just checking here today and I'm so sorry that another frustrating visit to the medicos was on your agenda yesterday. I am sure that one of these days you will get the answers you so badly need. I am praying that that day comes sooner rather than later! Hugs!


Well-Known Member
Kathy, I'm so sorry you're having to deal with all this waiting. I'm happy they chose to repeat the lab work, as errors can happen. When you look at the overall picture, it's surprising errors don't happen more often, but we REALLY try hard to do our best for our patients. If I'm having issues with my students, I read notes like yours to them so they can realize that we're actually dealing with PEOPLE, not NUMBERS. I'm also beginning to see that the doctors are experiencing this phenomenon for themselves, and they've always seemed to think they have been immune to it. Please keep your chin up and I'll keep trying to do my little part of the health care nightmare, as well as hoping for the best for you.


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Kathy, as always when I read your messages, I am ASTOUNDED at the courage, bravery and positive thoughts you and Mike exhibit. I went thru "a lot of awful medical things" when the drs. tried to "figure things out" growing up and I can remember the despair...after a very very long time everything worked out okay for me and I am praying you will have the same result. I think of BOTH of you DAILY and continue to pray that there is a rainbow at the end of this journey for both of you. It is a new year and a new decade, so keep positive thoughts. Hugs :)