Friday, November 15, 2013

The process of cancer treatment: Part VII Test Results

Interpreting the tests...
Test result are in fast. They are sent electronically, within the Ottawa Hospital system, to the surgeon and Cancer Assessment Centre. Not only that, but they have the email address of our doctors. The tests results are sent within a couple of days.
After we made appointments for the three tests (MRI, CT Scan, Bone Scan), the surgeons clerks made us a follow-up appointment.

It couldn't be too soon, as we didn't have dates for the tests at that point, nor should it be too far off. In fact, there is a two-week lull between the last test and the follow-up appointment.
An excellent book!
That said, serendipity entered our lives. Or a coincidence, or fate, or someone shining a light.

I've been home, for a week, fighting Norovirus, a virus, or something.
 Anyway, hubby was concerned and made an appointment with the doctor for me, when my situation didn't seem to be improving. Finally, Wednesday, things improved. It feels like a virus. I said I would cancel my appointment.

Instead, hubby took the appointment. He needed to have his regular prescriptions renewed. While he was there, he asked about his three tests (MRI, CT scan, bone scan), as the results were to be electronically shared with all his doctors.

Our GP said, of course he could talk about them. Turns out, cancer is not in his lymph nodes (a worry), nor does it appear to have metastasized to other organs. It has spread, we think within the primary cancer site itself, which isn't surprising. It would appear that the next step would be surgery. We're good with that.
Today is hubby's birthday. A gift.


 I recall another journey for test results. Dad was living in Muskoka, his oncologist was in Toronto. They required us to travel the two-hour drive, in an ambulance, as dad was incontinent and immobile, in a wheel chair, to travel to see her. All they did was tell us that the brain tumour was back, and that further treatment would not be done. Dad was palliative. I believe he had some dementia that fateful June. Mom had just died. Dad wasn't totally himself.

Transfer of residents between facilities

No standards for this 'service'
Not only did they waste an ambulance and paramedics for a whole day, but it took its toll on Dad and myself. We came back home through one of the worst thunderstorms I could remember. There now is another option.

Long-term care homes have since been using private transportation vehicles, rather than an ambulance. The controversy around this, however, is that the drivers are not paramedics, and there are no requirements for standards of training or care.

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