Put Some Ice On It?

Diane picked me up about 3:pm and took me to the doctor’s office. I think they schedule the Bone Marrow Biopsy patients at the end of the day as not to frighten other patients with any screaming. A nurse installed the IV and gave me some morphine and Ativan. The doc came in and I told her I was under the impression I was getting more drugs than last time, but now we were looking at the same dose as before. I told her I felt the Bolt of Lightning pretty strong last time we did this. She and the Nurse explained it was much preferred for my safety to give too little rather than too much, they didn’t want me to “Code” right here in the exam room. I pointed out that they had a, “Crash Cart” right outside the door, how dangerous could it be?

Then came the moment I’d been dreading, I laid face down on the table. The doc found the target spot in my hip and began injecting something to numb the area. She then confessed she would not really be able to numb the pain we have affectionately called, “The Lightning Bolt” when she breaks through the bone, but she would count as she did last time and it would be over. I was a little disappointed at that news, but no turning back now. She asked if I could feel her tapping on my skin, I said yes, I could feel it plainly. I think that got me another injection because as she continued to poke and push there, I felt only pressure. She said, “Here we go,” and I heard something hit the floor and roll, probably that big, marrow extracting, bone biting, spike needle tool. One of them began counting slowly, professionally, “One thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three,” as the other lunged quickly to snatch it from the floor before it would certainly be contaminated.

I felt a small pain which I understand was the aspiration, and another strange but tolerable pain and shaking, which I understand was taking a chunk of bone. “One thousand five, that’s it.” Okay, maybe they weren’t chasing the big needle thing across the floor. I didn’t feel at all silly or fuzzy headed with morphine, so maybe they were actually counting as promised for my benefit, not like we count to annotate that grace period before food that has fallen on the floor at work begins the accumulation of germs.

DISCLAIMER: I work at the Public Works Department, our motto is, “Come for the job – Stay for the humor.” It’s the Waste Water Treatment Plant whose motto is, “We don’t have a five second rule!”


I took this picture in Troutdale, Oregon, picking up a truck load of insulation

The biopsy results will be back in about a week.