Monday, April 21, 2008

Monday, April 21, 2008 - Adrenal Biopsy Day

Hiya Bloggy,

Yes, I know it's the evening of April 21st and I'm just getting to post on you, Bloggy, but it was a kind of stressful day and when I got home, I did sleep most of the afternoon away. That being caused by my taking an Ativan first thing in the morning and then another one about 15 minutes before the procedure... so by the time I got home, I was pretty sleepy.

Ok... the morning started with Doug picking my up and we headed off to the Cancer Agency. As luck would have it, the drive went fairly quickly and for some reason there was no road construction to slow things down, which is pretty normal for around the hospital area these days.

Anywho, Doug and I got there in plenty of time, I signed in and shortly after Dr. Bhugrat saw me. He is the Radiologist/doctor who was going to perform the biopsy but first he wanted to show me on the scanned images what/why we were doing the biopsy.

He showed me images from the CAT scans from 2001, 2006 and 2008 of the growth on the right adrenal gland. As far as I could see, there really was not difference... the shape looked the same and the colour looked the same. He then showed me the PET scan image of the same growth and it was lit up in a bright white, which is what has caused the PET scan radiologists to be suspicious and passed it on to my oncologist. She in turn, ordered the blood/urine tests to see if it was safe to go in and do a biopsy on the growth... and it was this biopsy that I had done today.

The procedure is done using the CAT scan machine. First he froze the area with a local anesthetic. I was on my stomach at this time. He then inserted a needle so far, then I would be slid into the CAT machine, a picture taken, then slid out again. This went on a few times until he said that the position I was in, my lung was too close to where he was going to insert the needle into the growth, so he wanted me to change positions so I was on my side... and we'd start all over again.

So again, it was a matter of re-freezing the area, inserting a needle, sliding me in and out of the machine and re-positioning the needle. This time he got it in and had to do it a few times because they wanted a few different samples. This went to the pathologist from the lab who was in the room as well and he prepared the slides, which would then be taken to the lab for analyzing.

The procedure took just over an hour. Pain? Hmmm... I'm not sure there was that much pain, although there was discomfort alright. The needle had to go through tissue and muscle matter, so I can expect to be sore for a few days.

We now have to wait until Monday to get the results and there's really no way the Radiologist could tell me one way or the other which way we are leaning. Adrenal cancer is very rare. Colon Cancer spreading to the adrenals is not common. So it's not like they have a lot of cases that they can compare this too, which is why my case is kind of complicated. On the other hand, I have had the growth there for some time. Does that work for or against me? Hard to say. Should it have come out years ago so it isn't there to become infected, or by removing it, would that just invite a new tumour to grow there from the spread... they don't know.

The unknowns are just too numerous to contemplate the "what ifs", but the biopsy results should tell us what we are dealing with. As I have said all along, if it's benign, I am going to be shouting from the rooftops and will be soooo excited!! I know we will still have to deal with lung surgery, but that will be something I have no qualms about. If it's malignant, then it's a road I just don't want to go down.

So even though the biopsy has now been done and the cells have been harvested, I once again am asking everyone to still send warm, positive thoughts my way! Send those thoughts that when I go to see the doctor for the results of the test that it is GOOD news we receive and GOOD results as to what our next steps are going to be. No bad news or negative news is acceptable.

Thanks everyone... keep hanging in there for me!!!

And for all you 1973 Grads who may just be tuning in to the blog now, Welcome!!! Hello!!! Long time no see!! And by all means, everyone can email me ( at anytime. If I don't get back to you right away, don't take it personally... I've been a little slow keeping up with the blog and email.... and let's see, I think this week I'll blame it on the meds. Until I can come up with a better excuse :)

Love ya!!!



Anonymous said...

Hey ya Sweet Cakes! I sure am glad that's now done and over with. Now, a VERY relaxing week while your world concentrates on happy, clear, no bad bugs, warm, healing thoughts. (Benign, Benign, Benign)

We're with ya Babe! Love, Susan from Issaquah

Anonymous said...

I'm glad the biospy is over, now we can get on with the whatever. Warm thoughts, white light and prayers are heading your way everyday. I refuse to accept any other word, but benign.

Hugs, Maryann

Diane said...

Everything good. Everything wonderful. Everything good. Everything wonderful. It's all about you! And you are everything good and wonderful! We all agreed on that a long time back, so it's true! 'nuff said, right? :) Love you, sweet thang! *nodding VERY decisively*