Saturday, March 16, 2013

Angie...and scanxiety...from last Fall

The nuclear medicine tech's name is Angie. She's gotten me ready for all of my PET scans, and she's the bomb-diggity IMO. She's nice, knows how to start an IV sans pain, and is as big a Blackhawks fan as I am. The lapel of her lab coat is speckled with Blackhawks pins. I'm still trying to get her to give me her Halloween pin...the Blackhawk Indian head wearing a witch hat (it's soooo cool), but she won't budge. 

Angie:  Here for a follow-up scan today?
Me:  Not so much. Had an abnormal MRCP last week. There's something there. The scan today is to see if there's anything else. 
Angie:  Oh, I'm sorry. 
Me:  Me too. 

So the life of a Stage III (or is it IV) melanoma patient goes. Scans every few months, regular visits to the dermatologist and frequent visits to the oncologist. I would have been perfectly happy to continue on that path. The stinking melanoma, however, had another plan. 

I don't think the scan results today will show a single mass. I think there will be more. I pray that I'm wrong, but either way this f'ing (yes, the word of the day is still the "F" word) melanoma is in for a big fight either way. I'm terrified of what that might mean in terms of treatment, but I'll fight like hell to kick melanoma to the curb. 

I found this during my flight to Vegas to see my buddy, Denise. I remember typing it the day of the scan after the injection while I was waiting for the radioactive stuff to attach itself to whatever cancer it might find. I guess I got so caught up in what came after the PET scan that I forgot to post it. 

I WAS wrong, thank God. But that was 5 months and a few days ago. I have scans coming up again in a few weeks, and it will start all over again. The doubt, the what-ifs?...the outrageous, obnoxious, undeniable fear. And I'll take it. Because if I get to keep having scans it means I'm alive. 


  1. Great post, Donna. I work in the radiology department at the VA and I see the patients, read their history, and fear for them every time they return to enter back into that machine. I've realized that no matter what age we are, the fear is still there.

    My scans are coming up in two weeks too... I'll take the scans if it means I'm still here & kicking! Have a great time in Vegas!

  2. I went through 5 years of PET scans. Every 6 months, with a chest X-ray in between. Laying there is horrible but waiting for the results is even worse. My 6 year anniversary date is May 21st. Keep your spirits high and think positive thoughts!
    Susan Collard