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Wednesday, May 25, 2016


This may be a short post; it depends on my energy level.

For the past few weeks I haven’t been feeling the best I blamed it on the pain I was having in my back. I have a history of low back pain. Well it all came to a head Monday night. Last Thursday I stopped taking a pain pill because I was having some bad side effects food didn’t taste good, so cold turkey I quit taking the drug, gabapentin and tramadol. I think that is how they are spelled. I thought I was having withdrawals, the same effect as if I was using some street drug.

For some reason I always wait until nighttime to seek help, so nine thirty pm with Daniel driving, Sarah in the back and me in the passenger seat mourning like I was going to die. We get to the VA ER and they get me right in. In the course of events we find out the evening shift only has two nurses and one doctor on duty. I had full blood workup done, then a chest CT scan to rule the possibility of a blood clot. Finally, the doctor said they couldn’t find anything wrong so he gave me something for the pain and we came home.

I had an appointment set up with the oncologist on Tuesday, yesterday, I wanted to get to day.
Monday morning my primary care doctor called me, her day off but she took the time to call. We talked, I told her what was going on and she said the problems I was having wasn’t due to the drugs, she said there is something else going on, so she set me an appointment for Tuesday at noon.

Monday night I was going to the bathroom to get ready for bed and my lower abdomen bowled me over with pain, I thought I was going to pass out. I have never had pain like that before, well maybe the kidney stone I had many years back was close. Sarah calls 911, I could not move I hurt so bad. The Paramedics finally found our house and came in the house. The one PM was really good, actually they were all good, I was in so much pain I didn’t care if they were good or not. They asked me which hospital I wanted to go to and I said the VA. The PM said the VA is closed. I said the ER is closed when did this happen? No she said they are closed to any more ambulances for the night. So I ended up going to a hospital about eight miles from the house. I want to say the ride in the ambulance was one of the roughest I have ever been on. By time we got to the hospital my back hurt as much as my abdomen.

Again I went through a series of test, blood work and CT scan. They didn’t find anything other than enlarged lympnodes because of the cancer but they made a disc of the scan so I could give that to the VA the next day.

So yesterday we go down to the VA and I am to have a CT scan at 10 am. I told Sarah, before we left home, to bring some plastic bags because with food and drink not tasting good I probably would throw up. We get to the VA and I am so weak I can’t walk very far so we get a wheelchair for me. Sarah does a pretty good job of wheeling me around unless there is a bump she has some trouble getting over it. So anyway we get to the infusion clinic to get my port accessed, blood drawn and then I would go to x-ray for the scan. I tell the nurse about the last few days and she says you can’t have another scan so soon; the dye they put through the system can damage the kidneys. This dye, for those of you who have never had a scan makes you feel flush, warm and tingly and when it reaches the nether world you feel like you have wet your pants, I don’t know if anyone ever has, I know I haven’t. The nurse gets the scan canceled and pages my oncologists and she talks to him. He said he would come over and see me in the infusion clinic otherwise I would have to wait until 2:30pm. He comes in and says that all the trouble I have been having was due to the cancer, it is flaring up and doesn’t want to play the same game we have been playing up till now. (That is my take on what he said)

The doctor is changing the treatment I will be getting from now on. One of the drugs is a monthly infusion of Zometa, this is to curtail the growth of the bone cancer. But before I can start this treatment I have to be cleared by a dentist because of my tooth implant the dentist has to check my gums for any possibility of bone infection, I guess you don’t want an infection in the bone while taking this drug. The other drug is called Zytiga, I will have to take four tablets a day forever, it is to hold the growth of the prostate cancer. I will still have pain in the abdomen and elsewhere so I have morphine tablets for the pain.

This isn’t the way I had envisioned retirement but it is what it is, so Sarah and I will deal with it. These last few days has just reinforced what a wonderful friend, companion and spouse I have. I could not go through this without her help and strength, I thank God for her every day.

Please continue sending me the positive vibes and thoughts and most especially your prayers, I know they are there and it is a tremendous help to me.


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