This past week has again come about in a manner causing me some concern. Primarily, it is all about Jo and her problems. You may recall that she has undergone a needle biopsy and a lumpectomy as a result of the finding of a “crystallization” of an anomaly within one of her breasts that was to be diagnosed as LCIS, or Lobular Carcinoma in Situ.
This week, she had appointments with two of her doctors. The one that relates immediately to the LCIS was with a brand new doctor, one that will work with her to do what is best for her in helping to prevent the LCIS from becoming a full-fledged cancer. As a reminder, LCIS is not cancerous, but it is a sort of a “marker” within one that indicates that cancer might be possible at a later time.
The new doctor consulted with Jo and informed her that her condition might be no more than a 30 percent chance of it becoming a cancer within the next 30 years. He also told her that there were drugs available that could help even more to lower those odds of the LCIS becoming cancer, but that those medications would have a possible side effect of causing blood clots. He also stated that there were drugs currently being tested that would have the same effect upon LCIS but not create the issue of blood clots.
So, Jo will now work with this new doctor and begin a new way of testing for cancer. Instead of an annual mammogram, she will have one next September to be followed in six months with an MRI. From that point, the testing that she will undergo will be an alternating process of tests every 6 months with a mammogram one time and an MRI the next.
We are very thankful that the doctor does not feel that there is any great or immediate danger to Jo’s health with regards to the LCIS. However, another issue has come up.
Seven years ago, Jo had a heart attack and the doctors found a vein or artery at the back of her heart that was restricted. Because the narrowed portion of that blood vessel was right before a sharp turn, they were unable to insert a stent. Instead, they performed an angioplasty, which for the benefit of anyone not familiar with that term, is a method of widening a blood vessel with a “balloon-like” device.
She also had an appointment with her heart doctor a couple of weeks ago to have her undergo a stress test. She has normally had one of those every year, but as it has turned out, it has been almost 2 years since her last one. After a stress test if performed, she will then be called to set another appointment at which she would receive the results of that test.
When she went to that follow-up appointment, she was told that it “appeared” that the blood vessel in question “might” be becoming restricted again. So, the doctor informed her that he wanted to schedule a procedure in which they could again go into the heard via a blood vessel in her leg and inject a dye that would give them a definitive indication as to whether the vessel was actually getting smaller.
Should it be that they find that the vessel is truly diminishing, they would perform another angioplasty during that same procedure for testing. So, that procedure and possible angioplasty is now scheduled for next month on the 12th of November. That is a fortunate time in that since we work for the State of Oklahoma, we have that Monday off for Veteran’s Day. At least we won’t have to take off from work for that.
Now, should they have to perform the angioplasty, there is the possibility, or likelihood, that she would need to stay in the hospital over into the next day. In that case, both of us would have to be off work.
Since we were already taking off on Friday the 9th, instead of a 4 day weekend, we might just have a 5 day weekend. Sadly, I can think of a lot better things to do on a 5 day weekend than spend time in a hospital, waiting to see what the outcome of the tests or procedures may become.
Now, the really funny part of this whole episode came about on the day that she went in for the follow-up appointment. Because of the scheduled time, we had to take two vehicles to work because instead of us going to lunch together, she would have to travel to the appointment on our normal lunch hour.
When I returned from home to work, Jo came down into my work area and her first words were:
“Now, don’t wig out on me…….”
What do you suppose I did? I didn’t “wig out,” but once again my concerns for my lovely wife were raised to a point of near tears. When that kind of time comes about, I literally can begin to “blubber” in my speech, so I tend to try to look away and keep silent so as to control myself. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, and sometimes it is a half-hearted “wig-out.” This one was half-hearted.
So, at this time, I ask my readers to offer their prayers for Jo with hope that nothing serious will be found with the heart condition, and that medical technology will come about with yet more great breakthrough discoveries to help reduce her possibilities of cancer.
It is certain that both Jo and I have faith in God and that if it is his will, Jo’s health will improve and I won’t become a basket case. Thank you all for your time and your thoughts and prayers. You are greatly appreciated.