In the good old days, the early 1970s when I was a nursing assistant in the surgery ward at General Hospital in downtown Minneapolis, they would have already drilled a hole into the Freyne skull [at right, as pictured yesterday]: "exploratory surgery" we called it.
General was a hot "teaching" hospital. Five color-coded surgery teams made up of seasoned five-year veterans in charge, all the way down to rookie interns fresh out of medical school. It was like one big M.A.S.H. unit, and several of the teaching pros with the scalpels were Vietnam vets.
Rich learning ground for this kid.
Risky business, too, but a lot of brain surgery was detective work. Finding out what caused what happened to happen. Unfortunately, the search for the answer inside a living brain often did its own damage, including speech or vision loss, paralysis, or death itself.
Fast forward to 2007. The mystery of the moment out there is answering the question: What caused that brain seizure I experienced when I was getting cancer "chemotherapy" dose #2 back in February up at the Mary Fanny? Only brain "seizure" this child of the Sixties has ever experienced. [Well, at least, only one that I remember.]
"Exploratory surgery" appears to be pretty much a thing of the past these days. Instead, in the computer age, they go high-tech with all kinds of scans. Magnetic Resonance Imaging, or MRI, is the hot ticket these days. So they slid me on my back into the big MRI tube, put ear plugs in my ears, and I held still with my head in a cage for 45 minutes during lunchtime Wednesday while the MRI machine shot the Freyne Brain in three-dimensional imagery.
An hour later, I had an appointment with Dr. Harold Morris the neurologist [left]. He got the first look at the high-tech images and liked what he saw.
The white, fuzzy area in the left temporal lobe around the speech/language center [right side in the MRI picture], was darker and not as fuzzy/light. Looks a whole lot more like the right temporal lobe, as it should.
Good sign, says he.
Clearly, even the Freyne Eye can see that the Freyne Brain isn't looking any worse.
Another good sign, says he.
The neurosurgeon and radiologist-types will take a peek, as well. But, hey, the fact that Dr. Morris doesn't want to see me again for six months is a damn good sign, eh?
P.S. Do have a surprise infection in the left hand - where I got the chemo two-times back. Red, swollen and sore. Doc Morris persuaded me to stop by oncology to have 'em take a peek.
Couple of the Mary Fanny oncology nurses looked at it, recognized an infection right away and gave me a script for Keflex, an antibiotic.
Keeping an eye on it this morning.
No problem with the feet.