Tuesday, April 28, 2009

April 28

Today Jill drove me to me follow up appointment with Dr Henderson - my radiation oncologist. We were to simply follow up on my status since radiation. Before long, after discussing my side effects, Dr Henderson called Dr Einhorn and they decided to get a CAT scan with a special contrast to enable them to see blood clots (embolisms).

So...it turns out that I have an embolism in my left lung. Apparently, this explains why I have had problems with shortness of breath.

Now...are you ready? So - went from going in for a normal follow up appointment to being told that I would spend tonight in the hospital. The docs want to get me started on blood thinners that will apparently work to break up the blood clot. By observing overnight, they can ensure that things get started properly. Then...now get this carefully...I will give myself daily shots of the blood thinning med.
In addition to the embolism, I have an elevated white blood count, very low potassium and high liver enzymes (whatever that means). So, they will work on those while I am in the hospital. I've already taken two potassium pills that are the largest pills I've ever taken - by 2 times.

So, even though it was a surprise to come in for a normal doc appointment only to end up spending the night in the hospital, it is nice to understand why I've had such shortness of breath. The embolism would not have gone away without treatment.

I saw Dr Einhorn this afternoon and he told me that the Tarceva appears to be making progress on my lung. Since the embolism is in my still clear left lung, he wants to clear it up asap. Even so, it will apparently still take as long as 6 months.

I will spend tonight being stuck a few times. I am wearing an oxygen tube and a designer hospital gown. It's a great look! I've already had my dinner of hospital food - I chose breakfast foods.

Take care and be well. - JimA

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