Sunday, September 2, 2007

Since I've been absent for a week or so....

I have decided to break my posts up by subject.

Today's subject: The Kidney, and how it kills you.

Most people assume that your organs are there to help your body function as a whole. Doctors wax poetic about the mystical symbiosis that exists within the complex structure that is the human body. If your doctor is speaking to you in quatrains, get the hell out of the room now, because he's trying to couch the news that you will soon be in agonizing pain. In fact, when you interview a urologist, you MUST, I repeat MUST, ask him which authors he enjoyed most in his college literature courses. If the names Dante, Melville, Hawthorne, Milton or Stephen King are mentioned at all, stand up, quickly back out of the room, never breaking eye contact, and run for your life. These are the calling cards of a sick and twisted mind. You do not want that mind controlling anything that is going to come into contact with an organ that filters your blood. Trust me.

As each day progressed as we last left me, our heroine, the left kidney continued its reign of terror and inexplicable pain. Kidney pain is unlike any pain I have ever felt before. And each time it hits me, I discover the old tyme religion like I never knew it . Goodbye quiet and introspective Lutheran prayers, this girl has felt the spirit rolling within her, and she does TESTIFY to "oh Lord, Oh God, Oh please, God, help me Jesus!"

Thursday, August 30th came. It was the day I was to be free of the 9 millimeter nemesis that dwells within my left kidney. Free from sudden pain that ruins plans for everyone. Free from pee that looks like raspberry tea. Free from trips to the ER begging for deliverance from snarky know-it-all bitches in scrubs.

When the fourth attempt at an IV insertion resulted in a blown vein and a bruise that swelled up like a golf ball and turned black immediately, I should have known it wasn't going to go well.

I remember the happy gas, the cold operating room, and then I was in recovery. Yes, my pain level is at a 10, oh some fentanyl....thanks babe! Oh more fentanyl. I'll take it. I have a stent in, I can feel it. I can feel my kidney...sure I'll take more fentanyl.....

Super G stayed at the hospital with Buddy while I had the surgery. Buddy tried to capture the goldfish in the tank in the surgery waiting area. He entertained a great many worried and tense people by telling them that mommy's pee pee was getting fixed here, at "mommy's hop-spital"

When they showed up to get me, I got the news. The good Doctor could not get the stone. He was able to not only thread the scope and laser into the kidney and make the 180 degree turn down into the lower pole, but there was a narrowing, or stricture that they had not been able to see on any of my previous scans. He could not grasp the stone, so he filled the kidney with dye, and watched as it slowly, barely, trickled through the stricture. So, not only could the stone not pass, but urine would back up and pool in the lower pole of the kidney, behind this stricture, as it slowly flowed out. This would cause a highly painful condition known as hydronephrosis. This highly painful condition is felt quite often when kidney stones pass, because they block the ureter, or impede the flow of urine, thus causing pain.

We have now figured out that the symptoms I have been feeling on and off for two years with varying degrees of intensity are due to this stricture, and the pressure of the giant stone behind it. So, EVEN THOUGH THE STONE IS "JUST" IN THE KIDNEY AND NOT PASSING, I AM EXPERIENCING PAIN. Hmmmmmm, I wonder where I've been told before that stones ONLY hurt when they pass????

But how do we fix the problem? Ah, I'm such a lucky girl. I was given a choice between attempted murder, and attempted manslaughter! What a deal. I chose to go with attempted murder, take my chances with the jury and hope for an acquittal, versus man 1, with a mandatory 25 to life sentence. (Sorry, just read that Fred Thompson is going to run for President.)

What I mean is I can have yet another Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy (PNL, or attempted murder) or they could do a partial nephrectomy, removing the lower third of my kidney.

My PNL will be on Tuesday September 11.

And I'd just like to shout out to Dr. Dawn P. who was working the Mt. Carmel St. Ann's ER dept on Saturday August 25th.

You owe me an apology, you smug, conceited, narcissistic Quack.

I was your patient. I came to you with a clear and obvious history of kidney stones, dating back two years. I had information to give you about my current condition that you chose NOT to listen to, because you just knew that stones don't hurt unless they pass. You did not treat me or my situation with respect. The attitude that you, who has never seen or touched me prior to that night, must know more about my current situation than I, who has been living with this for years, caused me to feel guilty for seeking out pain relief. I was there, shaking, vomiting, crying and in distress, in front of my children, and you insinuate that I'm not in that much pain, that I'm just there to get high. For shame. I would appreciate an apology, and that you admit that perhaps you were wrong, but I know that will not be forthcoming.

I do, however, have a pen and paper, and the ability to write. Rest assured, I remember our meeting and your name.


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