Back in March I had a follow-up appointment with the amazing Dr. Carl Brown, Super Surgeon. He was still very happy with the job he and his team did in carving me a new one and ridding my body of the primary tumor. He had a look at the nifty scar they left and asked me about how things felt.
I told him that there were some strange feelings and a little pain in there where he reconnected my new semicolon to what was left of my old rectum. He explained the scar tissue will go through the usual process that scars go through. Apparently the scar wants what the scar wants. It will scab over, go stiff and rigid then soften over time as it heals completely.
Before we reverse the ileostomy, we need to know that the scar has healed sufficiently and the connection is poop proof. We don’t want anything leaking out and getting all mixed up with the adjacent vital organs. That would mean some nasty sepsis type shit.
To further that important investigation, Super Surgeon told his nursing staff to send me for a x-ray. They forgot.
I waited patiently for the phone call telling me when to show up for the x-photo op. Last Friday I called them to ask about the delay. In a very impressive flurry of ass-covering-make-up-for-lost-time efficiency they had me under the radiation cameras this afternoon.
These things are usually performed with some sort of contrast dye like barium. You drink the foul paint-like concoction the night before and about the time they put you on the table it is washing around in the appropriate anatomic region. Well, with an ileostomy standing guard between my mouth and the ultimate destination, the contrast fluid had to, shall we say, go in the other way.
I was thoroughly impressed when the techs told me Dr. Brown would be coming soon to perform the procedure and photo session. It was a relief, because he hadn’t mentioned the enema part of the process and I was, frankly, not happy with the idea of some tech shoving something up my newly stitched together ass to see if the stitches are holding.
The woman who walked in and began pulling on a pair of latex gloves did not look at all like my Dr. Brown. I mentioned the fact.
“I was expecting Dr. Brown”, I said.
“I am Dr. Brown”, said she.
“Oh”, I explained, “I thought it was Dr. Carl Brown”.
“He wouldn’t know how to do this”, she said with a matter-of-fact finality as she snapped the wrist of the second glove. “Roll over on your side”.
It wasn’t nearly as painful as I think it might have been. There was some uncomfortable, slightly painful pressure on the semicolon-rectal join but nothing a big strong boy like me couldn’t handle with little more than a plaintive whimper.
Of course, everything that went in had to then come out. What wasn’t left in a puddle on the x-ray table I got to expel the old fashioned way in the bathroom. I haven’t used those muscles since January 28th when I had a 50-50 chance that I was shatting my last shit. See Surgery prep; I’ll miss this shit. It was a strange feeling.
The x-ray they took was described to me as an x-ray video. They shot dozens of x-rays while the contrast solution sloshed about in there. They refused to tell me whether they saw any telltale leaks, so I won’t find out until June 6th, my next appointment with Dr. Carl Brown; the male one that I revere as a medical hero.
Released from the x-ray room with a damp gown gaping in the rear and what was left of my dignity, I stopped by the imaging department to pick up the disks I ordered in January following my December MRI and pre-op chest x-ray. I already have copies of the CT scans from Abbotsford Hospital and wasn’t able to understand anything I was looking at, so I wasn’t holding much hope of understanding an MRI.
Look what I found in that file! I had no idea my fight was against Lion-Tumor King of the Bowel. I feel like Tarzan!
And I won!
I wonder if the offspring of the beast on my liver look like evil little lion cubs?
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