The Biopsy

Yesterday, we met with the thoracic surgeon and his team late in the day. There is a crazy whirl wind of questions, reviewing the CT, forms, phone calls etc. and suddenly I’m being admitted later that night! I can go home, have some dinner, gather my stuff and report back directly to the ward for about 8p.m. and the biopsy is scheduled for Friday afternoon.

This is all happening very quickly which in a way is good but, my mind is racing to catch up on what’s about to take place. When I hear “biopsy” I thing some sort of big needle poke and grab operation to get the sample. But oh no, it’s surgery. A 2″ horizontal incision in my upper left chest, some fishing around between the ribs, head over to the centre of the chest an cut out a sample. For the pros, the procedure is called a left anterior mediastinotomy 

When I checkin to the ward I’m put in a room with 3 other patients across from the nursing station and I can tell its going to be a noisy restless night. I brought the noise cancelling Bose headphones, so I’m sure that will help. Then, the favour of God takes over and out of the blue the charge nurse shows up and says “We have a better room for you.” It’s an isolation room that’s not currently needed and I now have a spacious private room!  Thursday nights sleep is very nice and peaceful.

Lots of waiting on Friday and the time slips to late afternoon. The procedure goes well and I’m back on the ward Friday evening, complete with a chest tube draining some interesting stuff into a bag. Because of the procedure, the pressure of the tumor and the fact that I use a CPAP machine it’s decided I need constant monitoring all night long. This means a person is in the room all night long with me, watching. Very weird. This goes OK, except that in the early a.m. she is texting and have the sound on so there are quite a few “bing”, “bing” bing” sounds punctuating the night.

Saturday noon they remove the chest tube and I’m discharged