Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Marbled Blotch

So I went to the dermatologist because I thought the thing on the back of my
knee was a cancer.  It looked like the ones that my mom gets taken off her
face from time to time.  Nope, it was OK, and I had the whole body check,
ending with what I thought was a lovely dark brown marbled splotch on the
left side of my left knee. 

"That doesn't look good," the resident, Gretchen, said.  Three torturous needle pricks of lidocaine later, she
scraped off that artistic piece of leg for the lab.  Dr. Parker, the teacher doctor, said he'd call within
the week with results, and he did.  He gave me the name and phone number of the surgeon he
wanted me to use.  Same place, OHSU Center for Health and Healing.  5th floor. 

So far in my experience, there's been more slice and dice than healing.  And three
crummy pricks.  (Aren't there always crummy pricks in every story?)  Ariana, the surgeon's receptionist described for me the two methods that could be used. 

One was excision.  I know that means "cut it out."  OK.  The other was the Mohs method, which as she described it seemed like another level to Dante's Hell, one he didn't know about when he wrote
The Inferno.  Cut out, wait, analyze and come back for more of the same, again and again, until there's only clean tissue.  Oh, yippee!  Then Ariana told me I could not wait until December when my husband had a free day at work, that December would be TOO LATE and this had to be done as soon as possible.  So November 16th was the date we chose together. 

Since he's coming with, Neal will have to miss work that day.  She called later
with the semi-good news that after analyzing what Gretchen had scraped off,
the surgeon will use the "excise" method.  There's already a big hole where
Gretchen did her handiwork last week so I don't think that part of my
anatomy will be very happy to be re-sliced.  And I'm not looking forward to
the lidocaine pricks since that's an area always inflammed thanks to my
fibromyalgia pressure point and zumba dance.  And that's the knee that might have
to be replaced.  To Knee or not to Knee.  Going through all that new knee or not process comes next. 

Well, not really.  Having a colonoscopy on the 8th of December comes next.  Girls just
want to have fun!!!
I am calling Ariana tomorrow to see if I can take Xanax before I arrive at
their office.  I get so nervous that the adrenalin rush after-effects leave
me limp, light-headed and unable to control my muscles.  Xanax might unnerve
me enough to sail smoothly through it all.

Complaining is what I do best, as you can see.  Really, I am ecstatic
knowing that I felt I had to see a dermatologist even if it was for the
wrong thing.  I think my friend Frank, who died from this very thing, sent
me the message I needed to go.  So thanks, Frank.  I'm always open to
messages from any dimension.  Anyone have anything to say about my
intestines?  Anyone?


Anonymous said...

Ben had Mohs surgery about six weeks ago. I left him at the dermatologist's office and went home. When I returned his earlobe was gone. I'm just sayin.'
But not to worry. I don't they'll take your knee. Funny post. Everything will be just fine. :/
Oh, and a few years back I wrote a column for the newspaper about colonoscopies. I'll see if I can find it. It will make you laugh -- or cry.

Judy Allen said...

My friend had the Mohs on his eye. Not fun. Trust your doctor on the excision.
So glad you took care of it early! And set a date early!