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Old 07-16-2009, 05:09 PM   #61
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Ratface, first I just want to say that I know you will make it through this if anybody could. I am so sorry that you have to deal with this very challenging and (let's face it) frightening situation, though.

Bestwifeever is right - - the reason they didn't tell you anything about this is probably that they aren't qualified to do so. Most likely a doctor is going to be paid (on your nickel, I am sure) to go over the images with a fine toothed comb and interpret them, using all of his skill and expertise. So expect yet another bill, in addition to the $2500, for his interpretation of your images.
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Old 07-16-2009, 05:25 PM   #62
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If you feel rushed, say that you are feeling rushed. It might help. Taking someone with you to the appointment is a good idea.
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Old 07-16-2009, 05:29 PM   #63
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Taking someone with you to the appointment is a good idea.
This is an EXCELLENT idea that I would recommend for anyone who may be seriously ill. One's mind tends to shut off as you are processing so much and everything that is said may not register. Someone else can absorb what the doctor is saying, from a more neutral perspective.
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Old 07-16-2009, 06:05 PM   #64
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If you feel rushed, say that you are feeling rushed. It might help. Taking someone with you to the appointment is a good idea.
I agree with you Martha. As I mentioned before, I went with my mother when she dealt with both breast cancer and a hip replacement. She is a together woman, but was naturally nervous. Most of all, she appreciated having someone to raise questions when she was in one of those "stunned" moments and someone to help her analyze what was said after meeting with the doctors.

Ratface, take care and keep us posted. You are in my thoughts.
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Old 07-16-2009, 06:44 PM   #65
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I've had doctors who were so rushed (or appeared that way in order to move us inquisitive patients along) that I've faxed ahead a list of questions for them to address during the appointment.

Then if they had more news to discuss, at least we had the time to spend on their info instead of rushing on to my questions.
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:16 PM   #66
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I had an MRI done once and the tech person looked all concerned which had me worried. But no problems were found. Some in the medical world are not the best p/r people around so try to relax. But I know that is easier said than done.

Best wishes and I will keep you in my prayers tonight.
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:28 PM   #67
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I asked the tech how the test went and he paused and said he had all the images he needed. This gave me great concern as I now feel he knows something he isn't telling. It was stupid to ask.
Ratface, don't read too much into that. The tech are not trained to interpret tests and would be overstepping his professional expertise if he did so. In fact, when a tech comes to my unit to do a test, he or she won't tell me anything either, even though I'm a physician. The radiologist has to interpret it.

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It's just that my MRI was $2500 and this must be more. The furniture in the place far exceeded anything in my house. I am paying for it yet am not entitled to any advance information. It angers me and I know its silly. I came home and opened the bill from my ENT doctor. His consultation fee was $324.00 yet I feel rushed when asking any questions.
How sad that you should have to worry about money at a time like this!

Hang in there Ratface.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:25 PM   #68
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The money issues are just misdirected anger. I simply can't help it right now. I have good insurance and can afford to pay the deductibles. DW goes everywhere with me. It pains me terriblly to see the pain that she is suffering. My last visit with the ENT doctor I typed a list of questions and he sat there and answered each one in turn. The point I was making about the money was that in our society we are accustomed to paying by the hour for service. It was not my intention to knock doctors. As in any profession most are noble and well intended. I also should have never put the tech on the spot, I got what I deserved. I haven't worked through the whole anger part of this yet.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:28 PM   #69
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The money issues are just misdirected anger. I simply can't help it right now. I have good insurance and can afford to pay the deductibles. DW goes everywhere with me. It pains me terriblly to see the pain that she is suffering. My last visit with the ENT doctor I typed a list of questions and he sat there and answered each one in turn. The point I was making about the money was that in our society we are accustomed to paying by the hour for service. It was not my intention to knock doctors. As in any profession most are noble and well intended. I also should have never put the tech on the spot, I got what I deserved. I haven't worked through the whole anger part of this yet.
All totally normal reactions. Your mind is racing. Not knowing what you're facing is often the worst. Wishing you peace and good news.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:31 PM   #70
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I wish I could give you a big ol' TX hug right now.....
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:37 PM   #71
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I'm glad this board is here for you, Ratface--vent at will. The medical folks you encounter understand how you feel right now.

I know you would be there for your wife 110 percent if she needed you. I wish the best for both of you tomorrow.
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:05 AM   #72
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Ratface. another of my pedantic quotations:"Grab the broom of anger and drive off the beast of fear"
And, forgive me for another one- "Let us be of good cheer, however, remembering that the misfortunes hardest to bear are those twhich never come"
Plenty of people here with you.
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Old 07-17-2009, 07:39 AM   #73
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Best wishes RF. We'll be praying for you.

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Old 07-17-2009, 08:07 AM   #74
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I hope the news is better than you are anticipating .
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:18 PM   #75
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Wow, what a roller coaster. I suppose it's easy to gauge my mood yesterday, at deaths door, no hope, and self defeated. Well someone threw me a lifeline today and I have grabbed on for all I got. Today was the meeting with the oncologist. Did not want to get out of bed. The results of the pet scan I was convinced were the most horrible possible. DW and I stopped for coffee just to kill time, as always we left with too much time. I just could not sit still. Arrived and signed in with the receptionist. She asked if there were any pet scan results. I had asked the receptionist at the Pet scan office twice to send results for todays consultation and had given her the doctors info. No results. I give this receptionist the PET scan info and she calls for results. I ask that she give me a copy when they arrive. I'm now waiting to see the oncologist when the receptionist walks up and hands me a copy of the pet scan. The oncologist dosen't have them yet. I start reading. DW is commenting that she can't understand it. I'm looking for one thing, Is it indicating cancer of the lungs. No vital organs are affected. I comment that I think its good. The oncologist walks out, introduces himself and I immediately like him. He asks some routine questions and begins to go over the PET scan one line at a time. He explains everything and keeps telling us to ask for clarification of anything not understood. The pet scan is lighting up around the node that was removed as well as two others. He reiterates that because the surgery has the distubed the area so much the others may or may not have cancer. An area at the base of my tongue is lighting up as the suspected possible primary site of the cancer. The ENT doctor could not see anything here upon his exam. He wants to biopsy the base of the tongue to confirm primary. Next I have too get a feeding tube installed in the abdomen and a port for Blood and IV in the collar area. Oncologist says I'm young, strong, and have no other medical issues. He says he can not guarauntee a cure but that it is probable and the long term prognosis is good. Chemo and radiation will be 8 weeks, 5 days on and two off. This might actually be a better prognosis than some lymphomas. This will be difficult to understand but I'm actually relieved to have this cancer. The very heavy elephant has gotten off my chest. There are some bad days ahead but I believe there will be many more good days after that. One thing that I want to point out is that alcohol and smoking worked in conjuction to cause this cancer. I've learned that the alcohol weakened the mucus membranes by constant irritation which helped the carcinogens from smoking to get a foothold. You only hear about the dangers of smoking contributing to cancer, I'm hear to tell you that alcohol is a big deal here. If you know someone that falls into this category as I did please pass that along.
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:26 PM   #76
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Ok, so now at least you know more. A squamous carcinoma, probably of the base of the tongue, with some lymph node involvement.

Good decision to have the G tube put in. The radiotherapy will make it difficult to eat for a while and you need good nutrition to heal.

I have a friend whose father developed something quite similar and he lived well for many years afterwards.

Thank you for keeping us all in the loop, Ratface. One day at a time, eh?
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:49 PM   #77
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Ratface, it is great that you know the results! Anything is better than not knowing, and
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He says he can not guarauntee a cure but that it is probable and the long term prognosis is good.
sounds pretty encouraging.

So glad your day was not as bad as feared.
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Old 07-17-2009, 07:17 PM   #78
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One thing that I want to point out is that alcohol and smoking worked in conjuction to cause this cancer. I've learned that the alcohol weakened the mucus membranes by constant irritation which helped the carcinogens from smoking to get a foothold. You only hear about the dangers of smoking contributing to cancer, I'm hear to tell you that alcohol is a big deal here. If you know someone that falls into this category as I did please pass that along.
How brave of you to pass along this information, which might be read by someone else on the forum who is at risk and did not realize it. You may not realize it, but what keeps coming through your posts is courage, courage, courage. You will beat this thing!

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Old 07-17-2009, 07:18 PM   #79
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[quote=vicente solano;836102]Ratface. another of my pedantic quotations:"Grab the broom of anger and drive off the beast of fear"

I love this one! How does it go in Spanish?

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Old 07-17-2009, 07:18 PM   #80
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Thank you for this update and for the info re the connection between smoking and alcohol consumption and your cancer. This is news to me. While I'm not a smoker, several in the family are, and I'm going to pass your story along. Such good news that a cure is probable. Take care, keep us posted as you feel up to it, and I'll be praying for your situation.
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