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Dec 03

My Diagnosis

My visit to the doctor

I visited my doctor because my bowel movements had changed. Instead of going to the toilet once or twice a day, which was my normal routine, I was going 6 or 7 times a day, which in itself didn’t ring any alarm bells with me.

Blood whilst on holiday

Carol, my wife and I went on holiday to Fuengirola in Southern Spain for a weeks holiday and it was there where I noticed blood in my poo. So, I decided to visit the doctors when I got home.

What a great visit that was

Talk about embarrassing talking to the doctor about your behind. Explaining everything above, for him to then ask the inevitable question, “do you mind if I examine you?” Well of course, you want to say “NO!” but simply know that you can’t.

Is it as bad as you expect?

The examination by the doctor? Too bloody right it is. As far as I am concerned, the rectum is a one way valve, and a doctor sticking his finger up it, is simply not right. He reassured me that he couldn’t feel anything, but said that he would book me an appointment to have a “camera stuck up there” I just hoped that it wasn’t a VHS or BETAMAX one!

Preparation for the examination

In order to prepare for a colonoscopy you have to have a complete clear out of your bowel. Which involves two things, firstly, 10 senacot tablets at around lunch time, then at 5:00 PM prior to your examination day, you resolve a packet of “stuff” in some warm water and drink it. You then “wait” until you need to visit the toilet. For me, this was almost 2 hours, people I spoke to reported that for them it was no time at all, but like Carol says, I have a “cast iron” constitution.

Niagara Falls

When I did eventually go, it was like Niagara Falls. It was like a balloon filled with water had just had the stopper removed. Anyway, suffice to say, I was cleared out. A repeat of the process the following morning simply got rid of the water I had drunk. I was really nervous about the journey in the car, just incase I “had to go” but fortunately, I was OK.

The examination itself

Apparently 1/3 of the people having the examination do so without any pain relief, so, being a tough Yorkshireman I decided I would do so too, and to be honest, I’m glad I did. The alternatives were “Gas and Air” the type my wife had during childbirth (which of course all dads try it out at the time) or more of a “sedateory” injection, which means you can’t drive afterwards and you are “disabled” for the next twenty four hours.

We view the tumor

So, you lay on your left side, facing a monitor, with your knees up. The doctor then inserts the tube with the camera on the end and you watch the proceedings on the monitor. It was really interesting to see this camera delving the depths of my body, however, within a couple of inches of entering we saw, what I describe as an angry looking lump. We travel the depths, all the way up to my small bowel and find nothing else.

The prognosis

The examining doctor said that he would come and have a word with me after I had some time to recover. I thought, I don’t need time to recover, just let me get off this stupid trolley. However, I was wheeled into a recovery room where I had to “break wind” before I would be allowed to go. This is the gas they pump you up with whilst they are doing the examination. Long story short, I farted a few times, they gave me a cup of tea and a slice of toast and I was OK to get dressed. The doctor then ushered us into a room to speak to us. It was then that he gave us the news that nobody wants to hear. “You have a cancerous tumour and we need to examine you further to check that you haven’t gotten it anywhere else.” He informed me that I will need two further “scans” an MRI and a CT, whatever they are.

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