3rd trip to the NHNN in London.

Hey all, hope everyone following had a good Christmas period. Mine was pretty good even with upcoming surgery hanging over me. Met a few old friends and had plenty of time with the family. Unfortunately Rene has a cold so im not allowed to see her pre-op. Having the question ‘so what are you up to now?’ asked over and over again became a bit much to answer. I think because the way I cope with cancer day to day is to not think about it, pretend it’s not really happening. But telling people and seeing their reaction brings it back. My new therapist seems to think putting it all to the back of my mind and pretending it’s not really happening apart from important times such as medical appointments is the best way of coping so I’ll carry on like that, haven’t done any reading or research about it for a couple weeks.

8th of January, one week away from my craniotomy I went back up to London for the pre-op assessment. 5:50am train and got home at 11pm. These day trips to London aren’t the easiest. I had an hours sleep that night and the muggy head made it hard to concentrate throughout the day in the meetings.

I had a general health check, lifestyle questions, more ECG’s, blood pressure tests, blood tests for CRP, kidney function, donor status and some other stuff such as neurological exams. The nurse said my CRP is probably high because of my IBS. Good news is my cardiologist gave me the all clear for surgery.

I was then met by one of the neurosurgery team to discuss all the risks and expected side effects of surgery in order to sign a consent form. The risks ranged from infection to strokes of course all pretty low probability. The expected side effects are varying temporary neurological deficits, motor control, speech, memory etc that will take time to recover from. High risk of more seizures due to air touching brain apparently and then the definite effect of wound pain and headaches that last a few weeks. Not really any surprises there though. I feel quite trapped with this coming so fast with no way of escaping it. I’m not looking forward to the few weeks of struggling after or going back on the steroids.

On the upside I had an incredible surprise when a friend of mine from the hospital I was on placement at visited me with a card and cheque for a ridiculous amount of money that the department had raised in order for me to on my bucket list holiday to the northern lights in Norway after I have recovered from treatment. The kindness people are showing me is more than I could imagine.


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