Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.


Biopsy Fun

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,Deep Thoughts,Life, the Universe, and Everything,News and Current Events,Personal — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Pig which is in the late evening or 10:14 pm for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Crescent

Right, so, I survived my biopsy.

Anne, my friend from church, got me there with plenty of time to check-in and fill out massive paperwork.  They collected the rest of my deductible for the year, which turns out to be more than I thought.  So, now I feel like I should drive recklessly to get my money’s worth out of the insurance company, but I assure you I won’t.

I was prepped and waiting for hours, in part for blood work to get done and in part for the doctors to figure out just precisely how they wanted to get into my lung for that biopsy.  I think the long waiting was about the worst part.  But, I had my own, private nurse there with me, who prayed with me and generally made me feel safe, secure and as at ease as possible.  I have no doubt that there’s a special place in Heaven for Anne, who was an absolute angel to be with me and help me through this.

About 11:00am, the came and got me for the first of several CT scans. The first the did with contrast, to help find “details” like major veins and arteries.  Apparently, it would be a “bad thing” to nick one of those while going into my lung, so I was quite happy that the radiologist took his time finding them all.  Then, they took another CT scan to line up where they were going to put the needle.  A couple shots of local anesthetic, lidocane I think, later the nice doctor had shoved a six to eight inch needle into my chest.  Then, another CT scan to make sure he’d hit his mark and he took a biopsy.  Then, I waited.  They ran the sample down to pathology to run some kind of test on it and decide if they wanted more samples.  After the longest fifteen minutes of my life watching that chest needle bounce around every time I coughed, twitched or moved at all, they took three more samples from that same needle.  Though, the radiologist did “stir” it around a bit in my chest to get a fresh sample each time.
I’ve done a lot of strange and freaky things in my time, but having a doctor wiggle a chest needle inside me rates right up there on the Freak-O-Matic scale.
But, with the third sample, he pulled the needle and gave me one last CT scan to make sure everything looked as good in the inside as it did on the outside.  And, finally, after more than twelve hours, they let me get a glass of water while I waited to have two chest x-rays done, again to confirm the wholeness of my insides.

So, I don’t know for sure when I’ll get results back, but it should be later this week.  Worst case will be in two weeks when I have an appointment scheduled with my pulmonary specialist.
I will add this, though, when they were taking samples the second time, I overheard them saying that one was for a culture.  Now it seems to be that they wouldn’t need to grow a culture of cancer to figure out what it is, so I’m hoping that means they’re leaning toward infection.  Anne tended to agree with me that, generally, one grows a culture of a mystery infection to figure out what it is and how to treat it, but that’s generally not something one would do with cancer.  At least, that’s what I’m hoping.
Of course, the results are still pending, so it could yet turn out to be the evil twin I’ve never had.  We’ll see.
When I found out more, I’ll let you all know.

But, now it’s time for bed.


  1. I’m glad they’re doing a culture. And I also think it sounds more like infection than cancer. Waiting for those results is going to be the longest, hardest time of your life. I know. I found a lump once and the waiting nearly killed me. It turned out to be a cyst, but it took a little more than just x-rays to figure it out.

    You’ll be fine! Take it easy and get better for goodness sake!

    Comment by Cheri — 3/12/2007 @ 11:55 pm

  2. That sounds like an ordeal. Glad you’re back to the comforts of home. You’ll be in my thoughs.

    Comment by Alison — 3/13/2007 @ 10:44 am

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