Wednesday, May 11, 2011

This ones goes out to Allegheny General Hospital

I am so sick and tired of Allegheny General Hospital, but unfortunately I don't have the option of going anywhere else for my care.  The other major hospital system does not accept my health insurance so I'm stuck.  

Let me refresh your memory or bring you to speed if you haven't been reading this from the beginning: after my partial mastectomy and lymph node removal surgery, supposedly the cancer specimen should have been shipped off for an Oncotype test.  Well, that didn't happen.  By the time I saw my medical oncologist (3 or so weeks after my surgery), he told me that he wanted to wait until the Oncotype test came back.  He had to send it because the surgeon's office didn't.  When the results came back (3 WEEKS LATER), they were inconclusive because the specimen had started to deteriorate.  

When I tried to get someone at AGH to explain this and maybe go, "Gee, Lara, we are so sorry that you waited three weeks for nothing."  I just got excuses from one of the hospital administrators, and the surgeon's office said, "We don't know what you're talking about.  We don't do Oncotype test."  So I had my medical oncologist telling me that the surgeon should have sent this, and the surgeon going, "The fuck you talking about, Willis."  

My New Year's Day Neulasta shot, which was supposed to only be a quick trip to the 6th floor of the hospital, turned out to be a two-hour stay.  When I registered for the shot, I was somehow registered at another hospital location... not the actual location where I was at.  When my oncology nurse found out a couple days after the fact, she apologized profusely for the mixup.  She vowed to find out what happened and would get back to me.

She never did get back to me with any answers.

Just recently, I was the last one out of recovery because it took them hours to find me a bed/room.  They caused my dad and boyfriend to wait hours.  I was done with my surgery around 1 or so.  I didn't get into a room until almost eight o'clock that night.  The nurses in the recovery room told me that I should be really pissed when I get my postcard from AGH, asking how my stay was.  Something like that.  I have yet to receive this postcard.

Now, a nurse told me that my radiation oncologist said I could have started radiation a week after my thyroid surgery, since I didn't have any contrast.  A WEEK AFTER MY SURGERY WAS MAY 3.  I'm just getting my planning scan (whatever the hell that is) tomorrow.  What makes me nervous and anxious: I was told that I had a 4 to 6 week window from my last chemo to start radiation.  Well, that window ended on MAY 5.  I'm a cancer patient with anxiety problems, and now I am starting the final phase of my treatment.... a week or so after a quoted time frame.

They better not fucking dismiss me when I see them tomorrow.  I was delayed prior to starting chemo, and now I have been delayed prior to starting radiation.  I am having panic attacks thinking that this is just screwing with my prognosis and this eight/nine months have been FOR NOTHING.  I'm going to need my doctor, one of them, convince me with hard evidence that my long-term survival rate hasn't been affected.  I have to tell you, waiting weeks to have your body go through complete hell is not fun.

I just want this to be over.  I want my life back.

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