I wrote a patient story over 2 years ago and it started with the words in the title of this blog. Those were the words my asthma nurse said to me after I nonchalantly told her I thought I’d lost some weight (it was about half a stone). I said “no” and it triggered a sequence of events that led to all the stories in all the posts in this blog; plus is why Chris and I are going to walk 84 miles along Hadrian’s Wall next week.
During treatment and particularly after my first major surgery, my weight dipped but I was still half a stone heavier than I am today. It eventually settled at 11st (70kg). However in the last 4 months, I’m now down to a weight I have not been for quite some time – probably around 20 years. So if the Asthma nurse asks me again “Did you mean to lose weight”, I’d now have to say “probably”. The weight loss is purely down to masses of exercise whilst simultaneously adjusting my diet (nothing drastic but less sweeties!). Annoyingly I’ve had to buy some new trousers! I suspect I’ll probably drop a couple of kilos (perhaps 3) next week, particularly if the weather is warm.
There are now only 5 days to go until Chris and I start our walking challenge. We’re looking forward to completing this walk and not just because it will leave us with a sense of achievement, but also because we need our life back! For the past 4 months, we’ve spent a considerable amount of our free time training and planning for this activity. Although this has met one of my personal aims of doing it (viz a viz my health), the list of outstanding jobs in the house is now quite long. Thoughts of putting my feet up when we get back are fading fast 🙂
Had to visit the hospital today…… don’t worry, I was just collecting the 2 litre bottle I discussed in yesterday’s blog here. Now confined to the house until tomorrow morning when it’s due to be returned to the Lab for testing. Whilst I was there, I also had a set of blood tests carried out including the specialist one which is packed in ice and sent off to Hammersmith Hospital. Both of these tests are crucial to keeping an eye on tumour mass and excess hormone secretion. I won’t find out these results until around the middle of June but my last 5 or 6 tests have been “unremarkable” (doctor’s word) so not expecting any dramas.
That said, I did manage to sneak off for a haircut. I’m 2 weeks overdue and starting to look scruffy (it was in fact described as ‘shabby’ in a private Facebook message). I was pleasantly surprised to receive my payment back as a donation to the Hadrian’s Wall walk fund (she read about me in the local newspaper). Some people are really nice 🙂
There aren’t many words beginning with ‘X’ but anybody who plays Scrabble or that rather addictive ‘Word with Friends’ app, will know there are quite a few in those games (grrrrr).
There is only one medical word I can relate to – yes you guessed it – X – Ray! Most of us have probably had one at some point. With an X-Ray, high-energy electromagnetic radiation is used to visualize internal body organs but clearly other types of visualisation equipments (scans) are better for certain parts.
Since being treated for Cancer, I can remember two x-rays.
- On the way to hospital for my very first big operation, somebody (no genders, no pack drill) went into the back of my car which Chris was driving. Only minor damage and it wasn’t Chris’s fault. It was the last thing I needed the day before a major operation! On arrival at the hospital, I let my Consultant know and he immediately sent me for an x-ray. No problems found – we were still ‘green to go’.
- When I woke up from this operation, I had more tubes in me than the London Underground! One of them was a nasal tube which went all the way down into my stomach. They put nearly all the tubes in you when you are ‘compos mentis’ (thank goodness!). However, it hadn’t occurred to me that they would probably take this one out whilst I was awake. Don’t know about you but I don’t like people messing with my eyes, ears, nose and throat! Actually, its removal wasn’t too bad. However, within 24 hours I was being sick – now there’s a scary thing….. being sick when you’re in bed with several tubes and connected ancillaries, not easy to get to a sink. Fortunately I had one of those ‘egg carton’ containers close-by which did the job. I think I was sick about 3 times that day. The nasal tube had to be put back in though and a nurse from the critical care unit was dispatched up to attend to me. I wouldn’t like to repeat this procedure as you essentially have to swallow it after insertion in the nose. After a 24 hour observation period, the green light to remove it again was given but I had already practised that one. Part of the investigation into this problem was an x-ray but whatever caused the sickness seemed to subside within 24 hours and no invasive procedure was required to correct the issue. I actually still have those x-rays as it was hospital policy to hand these over to patients on discharge 🙂
Bit of a ramble but it’s been that kind of day 🙂
See you tomorrow
Thanks for reading
Ronny Allan – Living with Neuroendocrine Cancer!
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