January 25, 1998
Good evening everyone,
This is not going to be a long letter. I'm a little sore today. They took the stitches out and it was excruciating. So... I'll catch you up to date on the latest and then I'll try to write more tomorrow. I almost managed to get all my E:Mail answered this weekend. Hehehehehe. I finally had to stop because my hands and arms were hurting and I was afraid of perhaps overdoing it and I thought for sure that was something that I didn't want to do. :)
I went to the lady doctor, Dr. Baird, today to have my stitches removed. This morning I discovered that the tumors have moved down both of my legs from behind my knees. Very painful. In addition a tiny one that we found on Friday on my shin has now grown into 3 fairly large ones. Hey and if that is not enough... the one she took out of my left arm is coming back.
The nurse removed my stitches and said the doctor would be in to examine me shortly. She is so darn polite, the doctor I mean, before she comes into the room she always knocks first. I think that is so nice. Well, when she came in I was crying. I apologized for being a baby and she said that was ok. I told her about the new lumps and she examined me. I then asked her if she had the biopsy back yet. She looked down to the floor and very quietly said yes. Well... I guess you know I TOTALLY PANICKED. Her body language and all had me convinced that I had cancer. Hehehehe. But she immediately said, "Well, it came back as a just plain old Lipoma. I had thought that they would be Angio Lipomas since they hurt so bad, but they weren't." May I say that I breathed one heck of a sigh of relief? Hehehehe.
Then she told me that since I had been in that she had researched and searched everything that she could get her hands on regarding Lipomas to see if perhaps she had missed something or if there was something about them that she didn't know. Then she reiterated that she did not know why they are coming on so fast, why they were growing so quickly and why they hurt. I then brought up to her the possibility of going to Portland. We had a bit of a discussion about that, but I'm just too beat to go into all that. Suffice it to say that I was satisfied with her answer "AT THIS TIME".
Then she shocked the Heck out of me! She said, "I have a thought. Once a month, the first Thursday of every month, The Willamette Valley Dermatological Society meets here in Eugene. Dermatology doctors from all over Oregon come. Doctors who have patients that have conditions that are unusual and vexing present them at the meeting. All of the doctors evaluate the patients. The doctor brings the medical records with them. After all the patients are seen the doctors go over each case one by one to see if they can come up with something. I would like you to present you at the next meeting if you would like. That way you could have a free second opinion from many different doctors."
If I hadn't already been sitting down you can bet I would have fell down. I couldn't believe it. I burst into tears and told her that of course I would love to go. I also was very gracious and I thanked her over and over again for being the ONLY one that seemed to want and to do something to help me.
So, I will be going to this meeting on Thursday, February 5 at 4:30pm. If these doctors know nothing, then I feel certain that they will have suggestions as to what type of doctor and who to refer me to. I'm very hopeful at this point. Dr. Fillingame never did call and say he had set up an appointment for me. So, when I am done needing him for referrals to this woman doctor, I am totally 100% through with him. This is the end of it for sure. I will not be treated like this from a doctor. He should be out for my best interests 100% even if it means sending me to every doctor in Oregon for an answer. But he hasn't and does not seem to want to. So this is the final straw.
I guess I will have to live with these Lipomas the rest of my life. I'm not sure right now. I hope that I can get to a specialist so that they can perhaps tell my why I am getting them, if I can get rid of them and how to prevent them if there is a way. The specialist lady, Dr. Baird, that operated on me said that the only cure for them at this point in time is surgery to remove them. She said that had removing the 2 she did had helped me, she would be more than happy to have removed them all, but she couldn't see any sense doing it since it did no good at all other than to relive the pain in those 2 areas. But... I don't think even if she wanted to remove them all I would let her. My gosh she would have to literally cut me up one side and down the other. A lot of them are in places that I don't think would heal very well either. Like on the inside of my arms and the backs of my knees. Those are places you are constantly moving or rubbing up against other parts of your body and that would be the pits to try and get it to heal.
January 30, 1998
Guess I should catch you up on the latest with me. I'm still getting more and more bumps, but what else is new. Hehehehe. I don't get so freaked out by it anymore. I'm actually getting quite used to it. They still hurt and the older ones are still getting bigger. But... I do have some good news. I have changed doctors. I will be going to a Dr. Whetzell. He is a fairly young doctor and I feel he would be more up to date on the latest things. The girl that sits next to me at work recommended him. He has been her doctor for quite a while. She went to see him a few months ago because her arm was hurting a little. He told her that she was getting the first startings of Carpal Tunel. He immediately took her off work for a week and then let her go back in a limited way. Good grief... I have been begging and pleading with Dr. Fillingame to take me off work so that I could hopefully get better and he wouldn't. I really feel at this point that this guy would be better. She told me many stories about things that had happened and what good treatment she got from him. I go to him Monday at 2:30pm. I hope I like him and hope that I feel comfortable with him. From all she says he should be the kind of doctor that will refer me to some place that I should go for sure.
Then on the 16th of February I have to go to Salem. It is a town about an hour and 15 minutes from here. The workman's comp people are wanting me to see their doctor for a second opinion. I was a little freaked out by it at first, but I have since learned that this is something that is standard operating procedure. The are sending me to an Orthopedist (Hope I spelled that right. Hehehehe.). I rather thought they were bone doctors, but I guess I might be wrong. I wonder what he will think of the lumps. Since Salem is so close to Portland, I think I'm going to call my dad and get directions to where he is working now. That way I can go and see him and my step-mom while I am so close. I think Portland is about 30 minutes from Salem. I haven't seen my dad in 2 years about, so it will sure be nice to see him and my step-mom. I just love her. She is the absolutest greatest woman. So very different from my own mom. I actually really like this woman. She is real and not fake at all. She won't mince any words either and I respect that. :)
I was really scared at first, but not anymore. It concerns me for sure, but since I found out that it was not cancer I'm not near as afraid. I've just come to accept it. I've always had a positive outlook on it... in between the times I would get so darn mad at my doctor. Hehehehehe. I think I'm pretty tense and on edge a lot though. Sometimes I don't realize it until I notice that my body is all tight. I then try to relax if I can, but pretty soon I notice I'm all tight again. Hehehehe. I actually try to see the humor in some of the situations when I can. That helps a whole lot.
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