Saturday, March 28, 2009


A friend asked me on Thursday how things were progressing with my radiation treatment; and I realized that I had not really informed anyone that they were not progressing at all, at least not yet. It has now been over a month since I wrote a post outlining the treatment I would be receiving, which would begin by injecting CAT-scan-visible markers to delimit the area to be the target of the radiation. Those markers will be inserted this coming Friday (April 3). I was reminded of this because, as of today, I have to stop taking the "baby aspirin" tablet I take every evening along with my cholesterol medication. Aspirin thins the blood, and you do not want to have thin blood running through any vessels that may be penetrated when the markers are applied. (I did not have to worry about this when I had my prostate biopsy, because I was not taking the low-dose aspirin at the time.) Then, I take an antibiotic (Cipro) the night before Friday's procedure takes place; and I have at least one dose to cover me after the procedure as well. Finally, there is the Fleet enema I take a couple of hours before the procedure (which deserves no more vivid detail than the procedure itself). Once the markers are in place, the CAT scan can be performed and the results interpreted for planning the direction of the radiation beam. Only then can the actual treatment be planned and begun. The coming week will therefore be primarily a matter of waiting. Fortunately, I have supplied it with concerts that will keep me occupied with writing and (hopefully) distracted from the waiting itself.

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