1 x Hospital stay for stem cell harvesting
1 x Blood doctor that doesn’t part with information (Dr A)
1 x Very pleasant nurse
1 x Department Registrar (Dr R)
1 x Different blood doctor (Dr B)
1 x Bone marrow transplant co-ordinator (BMTC)
1 x Lyptic lesion in right femur
Take very pleasant nurse and have following conversation.
‘Dr B has asked for an x-ray on your right femur’
‘Don’t you mean my left one?’ Make puzzled expression.
‘Where were you getting the pain?’
‘In my back and left hip after getting my mother in law out of the bath.’
‘Oh, maybe I got mixed up. Anyway you can go down tomorrow after harvesting.’
Add Dr R to the mix and have following discussion.
‘Have you been for your x-ray on your right femur?’
‘You need to do that before you go.’
‘Okay but don’t you mean my left one?’
‘No, the right one. The x-ray from Whiston only shows the top part of the lesion and we wanted to see it further to see if we need to do anything about it before your stem cell transplant.’
‘What lesion? I have a collapsed L3 and some damage to my ribs.’ Add a tiny pinch of rant about how little Dr A says.
‘Have you seen your x-rays?’
‘No’ Add a touch more rant to taste.
‘They are yours, you can ask to see them. I can show you them before you go.’
Pack belongings and go for x-ray on right femur whilst waiting to be collected.
Vacant room with husband in tow and request viewing of x-rays on way out.
Lightly stir in BMTC.
‘Why do you want to see them?’
‘Because I can.’
‘There’s nothing really to see, but you can have a look if you really want.’ (In a considerate we don’t want you to fret way.)
‘Yes I do.’
Add husband – ‘I’m not looking.’
Have a good stare at x-rays from today and last April.
Dr R ‘The myeloma.’
Der ‘Yes, but what’s that bit?’
‘Oh, the thin bone. Where’s the pain?’
‘I haven’t got any.’
BMTC ‘You’ve got strong leg muscles.’
‘They’re not as big as they used to be’
‘Well they won’t be!’
‘So what about exercise?’
Get Dr R to give BMC a look.
Dr R ‘No heavy weights, nothing that jars it.’
BMC ‘Walking’s very good.’
‘That’s back to brisk since I’ve been feeling better. Dr A wouldn’t give me a letter for my GP to refer me for an exercise programme.’
‘And when he said no you start thinking all sorts.’
‘No,it’s more since he’s not very exercise orientated anyway and…’
‘And if he says no with no reason then you want to do it anyway.’
‘Yes, I’m fine if someone explains it to me. So how thin?’
‘Don’t fall over!’
‘I only said this morning that I had my bed so high to take advantage of the view that I had to clamber on to it so I took to lowering it just in case I fell and broke my leg because how embarrassing would that be!’
Add final dusting with light laughter.