My Doc Appt

Today I went to see my urologist as a followup from my last hospital stay. I have never had such a whirlwind visit. Doc seemed more concerned about my pee bags not being strapped down than anything. Ultimately he decided to do some replumbing on my back when he replaces my kidney stents on August 7. He is hoping to simply all the tubing on my back. OTOH, it bothered me he had no concern for my kidney functions.

In answer to one of my cell texters, Yes, I had a nice lunch of an overdone petite sirloin and veggies I am not supposed to be eating! Lol. I am rarely sick enough to go see a doctor and not eat. 😉

Back to Parkview

After my last visit to this hospital, I have had a catheter installed. It has not been a problem and this weekend was to be its last hurrah. We were to remove the thing Monday. The urologist wanted to be available in case there were a problem.

On my last visit, the doctor removed a lot of cancerous tissue from my bladder using his handy-dandy laser cutter. I gathered his concern was due to the large amount of tissue removed and whether what is left will function properly.

But now I am having some pain from my kidneys. The flow is just not adequate, especially if I am lying down. Not very restful and is getting worse. So I finally connected with my urologist late last night and we agree we would met at Parkiew when he gets back to town this afternoon.

Donna and I debated our possibilities and, even before he called, decided to wait to go. I was not in crisis mode so waiting seemed reasonable. Especially on a Saturday night!

So we packed our bags. I took another Vicodin and went back to bed. The doctor called back several hours later and we reached agreement.

So the first order of business is a CATscan to determine where the blockage is. This is not the course I expected my disease to follow.

I am still kicking

but medical problems are preventing me from updating my Blog! I can’t sit!! I cannot figure out how to lay in my bed and use my laptop! I have two days off from my problem then it will start again Thursday.

I have some prostate scar tissue blocking my plumbing and my urologist can’t get it to clear. We are gonna try again Thursday. I think using a corkscrew or something. And another catheter will be inserted.

I am getting a lot of reading done! And texting.

I WILL be back!

My Cancer Update

I went to see my urologist in Pueblo Wednesday. This Firmagon injection was only 80 mg; last month I got 2 120s.

This is the whole thing that the nurse laid out for the doctor.

I was surprised to see this was a powder. The vertical line is a reflection of the fluorescent light on the ceiling.

He squirted sterile saline into the vial and mixed it before he sucked the mixture back into the syringe. Then put it into my belly. I tried to take a picture of him injecting but my big belly got in the way! He is good; it was painless.

Then the nurse took a blood sample for a PSA analysis.

The doctor called me this afternoon and “fired” me as a cancer patient. He will continue as my urologist but wants me to find an oncologist. Because my PSA was 40!! Much higher in only two months from the 12.6 in December. I don’t blame him for bailing!

My GP said he knew an oncologist who practices at the Heart of the Rockies Hospital in Salida. So I called his office to get referred to the oncologist. I hope he is taking patients; he is supposed to be retired!

Sometimes this adventure takes me unexpected places.

My Urologist Visit

On Jan 11, I went to see my Urologist in Pueblo. A took him the copy of the CD of my CATScan in the ER. Donna went with but was tired so she slept in the Escape while I had fun.

I got my shots of Firmagon, which were painless. So I have two lumps on my belly (my depots) which became tender to pressure and itch. The doctor somehow sited them perfectly so that when I press against the kitchen counter, I back right off! Doc told me these two shots were 120mg each but my next one will be only 80 mg. It is NOT oil based but water based; the subcutaneous siting inhibits the uptake so it lasts a month.

He had someone set up the CD of my innards while he shot me. After I was dressed, he asked me out to look at it with him. He pointed out the “mass” in my bladder which was more like a gray shadow and showed me the small stone hanging in my kidney. Then he casually asked me if it were OK to take a look in my bladder while I was there. I agreed since Donna was sleeping.

It was interesting how the doctor’s demeanor changed. He was less assured about the cancer treatment, not in the sense he seemed incompetent but more like he could not assure me the injections would cure me. But once we got into regular urology stuff, he was The Doctor! (My GP later explained that is common since cancer is generally incurable and “life extension” is not what doctors wanna do. He didn’t want to take over my injections!)

I returned to the waiting room while they worked me in for another exam. Which didn’t take long. Then I was taken to a different exam room and told to lower my pants.

[Lurid details skipped]

After his looking around, he connected the scope to a TV thingy so I could see. He explained my bladder shows signs of damage, presumably from my radiation therapy; the damage made the walls look like tiles, not smooth as they should be. There was no sign of the mysterious shadow thing. My prostate looks battered and pink.

It took me three days to get over this exam! But it went well and he will get me ultrasounded in the near future. Unless I develop kidney pain if the “cloud” blocks my ureter.

Another Urologist Appointment

This was my regular 3 month Lupron injection. But when the doctor saw my PSA results, he changed the plan! It was over 8!

Instead of getting three month’s injection, he gave me one month’s worth. Next month he will change to a different drug “for situations like mine”. But I don’t know the name. He has to order it and I will get it the 27th. That drug has to be given monthly. In my abdomen. sigh.

The curve of my PSA results shows it rising in a non-linear manner.

They took another blood sample to see what the increase in one month is. Based on this chart, I estimate the results will be near 9.5.

This was the thing he was talking about when I get to 9. But he assured me any talk of chemo will be when I get in higher (?) double digits.

So my adventure continues.

A PSA Call

I got a call from my urologist’s office about my PSA. I didn’t mention in my post about the Lupron injection that he had a PSA drawn as well. It seemed like an afterthought. It was 4! Oops. The last one was 2.4. So even with hormone suppression, my PSA level is rising.

Or there are other factors skewing the results: this test varies from lab to lab so his may tend to higher numbers and he also did a digital exam first which elevates PSA.

We talked about my cancer indicators and he said we would use the PSA but he would prescribe bone scans for my peace of mind. He wasn’t gonna worry until my PSA gets in the double digits. The logic of that is, even if it mutates, the new, undifferentiated cells will be mixed with the existing prostate cancer cells. If they start growing, the undiff cells will be crowding and annoying the existing cells, raising my PSA.

So I don’t know at this point if it is actually increasing. Nor does it matter at this point.

They are gonna send me a lab script to get a PSA in a couple of months.

My Urologist Appointment

This morning I did my library duty then had lunch in the school cafeteria: spaghetti with cheese sauce and chicken. I wasn’t the only one who found this a unique experience among the staff! Lol. But it was good.

Then I headed down the river from Cotopaxi to Pueblo for some time to bond with my urologist. By the time I got to Pueblo, the temperature was near 100°. Thank the Goddess for air conditioning! The doctor’s office was downtown and the waiting room was packed! I figured a long wait.

The receptionist handed me the cup for a urine specimen. She was having her birthday Friday then joked if I thought she was 25. I told her i did then asked how old she was. “32” she replied and I told her she looked like 25. She thanked me! Then I used the cup. By the time I had settled in a chair, the nurse called me in!

When she ushered me into an exam room, she asked if I had an infection. I said no, I didn’t and asked why she asked. “Because I gave a urine specimen.” I explained it is a urologist office and they always want one and the receptionist handed me the plastic cup. Even the doctor asked me. Made me wonder.

Turns out most the people waiting were first timers and were doing paperwork. So in I went. And the doctor didn’t waste any time either. My primary purpose for the visit was to get another injection of Lupron, my primary hormone suppression drug. He actually asked me which brand I wanted! What did I know! Lol. He picked the same brand I had been using.

He found my taking pictures amusing. Then he mixed up the brew for my butt.

I didn’t know this was a binary drug but he had to mix it up; it wasn’t milky looking until he mixed it. Interesting. Nice needle, too.

I leaned over the exam table and relaxed. Then yelped when the needle hit a nerve! Normally I don’t even feel the injection since it really is on my lower back.

I was kinda embarrassed by my reaction. I will be getting these every 3 months for the rest of my life.