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Monday, August 17, 2009

I hate when that happens

So I saw Dr. Lee Zehngebot today, a week after my most recent CT scan.

After small talk about our toys -- his new iPhone and me about my G1 Google phone -- we discussed results of the scan and other medical issues (imagine that!).

They were not as I had expected. In the past, it's been S.O.P. for me to go in and hear that everything was fine with the scans.

This time, however, the results aren't clean. "I don't know what it is," Dr. Z explained.

That's because the radiologist who went over the scan and reported to Dr. Z wasn't quite sure, either.

It appears there's a 3 cm by 2 cm nodule of either fluid or something else near my stomach/esophagus that puzzled Dr. Matthew Hesh, D.O.

"It is difficult to determine if this represents a recurrent neoplasm lesion, adenopathy, or loculated fluid." Yeah, I don't understand most of that either.

But this I do understand: "I would suggest a PET scan for further evaluation."

So that's what Dr. Z has done. Stat.

Tuesday at 1 I have to be at the advanced nuclear medicine lab across Orange Avenue from the main Florida Hospital campus for what will be my third PET scan.

I have a few instructions to follow before the scan. Starting about midnight today I can't have sugar, caffeine and such stimulants. No exercise or anything strenuous, either. After about 7 a.m. Tuesday, I can't consume anything but meds and water.

Then when I get to the lab for the test, a nurse will hook me up to an IV (always fun) and inject me with radioactive glucose. This stuff is stored in something right out of Star Wars or Star Trek -- a metal canister that is turned until the radioactive liquid in a glass vial is released. It's injected via the IV and then I relax in a closed room for about an hour, listening to bad music, and then basically travel through a tunnel like an MRI. This machine, though, scans for concentrations of the injected glucose sugar. Cancer cells absorb the glucose faster than other types of cells, so the theory is they'd have gobbled the sugar up in enough quantities for the scanner to pick it up.

Hopefully, this nodule near the upper right lung area is nothing and the test will confirm that.

I'll keep you posted.

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