Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Wow! Monday's appointments turned out to be a hectic day of confusion! It was the hottest, muggiest day of the year in Toronto too! Bleh!

My first scheduled meeting of the day was with my transplant coordinator. She explained to me what tests I was having this day and we had a general chat of future events and appointments outstanding. She also told me they have a recipient in mind for me, a 'small female adult'. (That's all I know, and that's all I will probably ever know as I'm doing this anonymously.) We also discussed a tentative surgery date. September 16th! As she reviewed my chart, she added a blood test for me to get before I left for home. Our parting conversation was that she would be in touch with the results of the CT cholangiogram as soon as she gets them.

The CT cholangiogram was an ordeal! As I was registering at the reception, one nurse remarked that the department was way behind in appointments. I was a little spooked because I didn't want to be late for the next appointment at 3:15. I only had to wait about 15 minutes before I was called in though and was led down the familiar hallway to the change rooms....then I was handed the gowns! I don't know what it is about the gowns, but I really do like them! One goes on in front, like how a surgeon would wear one, the other goes on like a robe, true comfort! Truth be known...I go commando underneath! The boys are free, cool breeze and sway-age! Nobody knows, and I like the freedom! Anyways, the tech guy leads me into this little room where he starts getting all this stuff ready. Needles, IV tower with bag of solution/contrast and a little vial of something. As he's prepping we're making small talk, then he says I can't drive for 5 hours after this scan......huh?? That wasn't in the plan! 'Sorry fella' I tell him, 'but I'm driving'! He leaves to consult with the head guy and they both come back to talk to me. Turns out, the little vial has Benedryl (or something like it) in it. They add it to the contrast medium so the patient doesn't have an allergic reaction to it....but the Benedryl makes you drowsy. So, at this point, my option is take the test with the Benedryl, or the test gets cancelled. Now, since I wasn't ready to take the gowns off, we compromised! They only put 1/3 of the Benedryl stuff in with the medium. They hooked the IV up, let it empty into my arm, which took about 15 minutes, then they gave me the scan. This scan was to further highlight my biliary anatomy so the surgeons could assess them more closely. Modern medicine is fascinating isn't it? When it was finished, I didn't feel drowsy or tired at all. As I went to change back into my street clothes, I was sooooo tempted to steal the gowns, but I figured I'd get caught and it would be embarrassing explaining my hospital gown fetish to the cops. ~sigh~ I leave the department gown less.

The Pulmonary Function tests were strange! I was lead into the 'testing' area, it's a huge room partitioned off into cubicles made of curtains, and every where I look, there are people sitting in chairs with their mouths wrapped around this white tube hooked to a machine and technicians are screaming at them....BLOW BLOW BLOW!!!! MORE! HARDER! BLOW! Of course in my immature mind I'm thinking...'what the hell kind of porno set have I entered??' This, however, is the test! They pinch your nose shut with a clip, and they get you to breathe into this white tube-y thing....no robes though. You do regular breathing, panting, fast exhales, fast inhale....it all measures lung capacity and it's all hooked up to a machine and computer. I was expecting something totally different, but it was actually pretty neat. As your doing the test, the technicians are literally screaming at you to blow, blow BLOW! KEEP GOING!!! The test took maybe 20 minutes, no dizziness or lightheaded-ness and still no drowsy effects from the Benedryl! At the end of the test, I was told this was more for the anesthesiologist....makes sense to me!

My last stop was the at the blood lab. I gave the receptionist my cards and the test number, but they were confused. They called me in and drew blood, 8 vials, but they were still confused. They asked me who ordered the tests and when I told them, the names didn't match and the tests didn't match. As they were finishing up, they promised me they would take care of things and I was on my way. At least I have a surgery date scheduled! Things are looking good thus far!

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