Loren’s Good to Go

After nearly six months of being poked, prodded — and injected with radioactive dyes, the doctors have finally decided that I’m “normal,” or, at least, I can pass for normal.  

Sometime in January my new Apple Series 4 watch decided that I was having an aFib episode.  I decided perhaps I should consult the local Urgency Care Clinic, and they decided  that my watch’s reading was accurate, that I should go to the Emergency Room.  Perhaps I  should have, but in doing so I seem to have lost control of my life because I have spent much of the last six months being tested for possible ailments. 

Turns out at 77 that not everything works (or looks) as it used to.  The first tests were directly related to the aFib episode and probably my family history since my father and both my brothers have had heart issues.  I waited 3 weeks to get my first test and another week to get a stress test.  A week and a  half later I got in to see the cardiologist for the results.  My heart tested within the “normal” range though it was slightly enlarged and had a slightly leaky valve.  I was given some medicine to regulate my heart and blood thinners to prevent heart attacks, and, more importantly, to me, at least, to prevent strokes.  I felt pretty good before I started taking the medicines, but it took longer than I would have liked to adjust them.  For awhile I had trouble just getting up and down, much less exercising.  

It would have been nice if the medical procedures had ended there, but they didn’t.  Turns out when they took the original x-rays in the Emergency Room they saw some spots on my lungs.  My primary doctor followed up with another x-ray a few weeks later and the spots still showed up.  She referred me to my pulmonologist who had me get yet another x-ray.  When the same spots showed up, he sent me in for an abdominal CT scan. The results were pretty much normal, but the test showed a cyst on my kidney and some other artifacts.

As a result, a week later I was scheduled for a abdominal/pelvic CT scan.  The result came back just a few days ago, and everything was apparently normal except for the small cyst on one of my kidneys, which is apparently quite common in older patients. Nothing to worry about, I was told. Since I had to have a blood test to make sure my kidneys were operating correctly before each CT scan, I feel assured that the cyst hasn’t compromised my kidneys too much.

It feels good to be resuming my workouts at nearly full level, and I’m looking forward to taking a field trip in the near future. Of course, if I were a worrier,  I might wonder if all those radioactive dyes and x-rays might have consequences of their own … 

Luckily, after three bouts with cancer I seldom make plans for anything further away than six months.  Carpe Diem!

6 thoughts on “Loren’s Good to Go”

  1. My wife is in kidney failure and we’re each going through a battery of testing, her to see if she’s eligible for a transplant and I to see if I can give her one of mine. A nurse told us that if every test comes back normal, then we’re abnormal. 😉

    I’m glad you’re doing well! I hope you’re with us for many years to come!

    1. I remember you saying something about your wife’s illness before. Transplants are definitely a modern miracle.

      Ironically, the nurse who set me up for the CT Scan told me that they had discovered a cyst on her kidney several years ago when they first set the machines up. A surgeon friend told my wife basically the same thing the nurse told you.

  2. You take care of yourself! Good to hear you are on the mend and I am looking forward to more of your beautiful photography.

  3. I’m waiting with increasing impatience for the development of an app to which one can upload the undiminished passion for & engagement with the world, the clarity of a perception untrammelled by the vanity & anger of youth, the capacity for sustained concentration on things creative, the fighting against the dying of the light. Then the body can do what it likes by way of dereliction & decay! I’m glad you’re back in balance, Loren.

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