Tuesday, August 09, 2005


Gail wrote about my biopsy this morning, while I was sleeping off the effects of the anasthesia:

Inside AviatorDave

At least I was able to sleep it off at home, as they did the procedure on an outpatient basis. Gail recapped the results, so I'll just offer a few impressions.

We had to sign in early; 6:00 am at the admissions desk. After a short wait, I was ushered into the outpatient surgery wing and given the requisite dignity-robbing hospital gowns to change into. At least now they give you two, so that by wearing one forwards and one backwards like a robe, you don't run the risk of offending anyone with a "wardrobe malfunction." A note to hospital-wear tailors: Buttons. Look into them.

I filled out a four-page form stating that I was perfectly healthy, and that I have never had adverse effects from anasthesia. Then I signed another form stating that I would not sue them if I had adverse effects from anasthesia. The lung specialist who would perform the procedure outlined what we would be doing, and I signed a form stating that I understood that everything could go horribly wrong.

With an IV inserted (absolutely painless, this girl was good) and my papers filled out, they told me that Gail could join me until I went in. She came in, and twenty seconds later the transport orderly showed up with my gurney. So I handed Gail my personal effects, and climbed up on the cart, and she flashed me our trademark wink as I was wheeled away.

After a LONG gurney ride (Am I still in the hospital?) I was in the operating room, glaring white everywhere. I was given a little pipelike thing to breathe from, which was bubbling and steaming like a tiny witch's cauldron; this was novocaine for my breathing passages. Then a shpritz in my throat for more numbness, and a hard plastic ring was taped into position over my mouth. A nasal cannula went into my nose. As they got me into position, my saline IV drip was switched to the hard stuff by the anasthesiologist; he said, "Now we are giving you something to relax. Do you feel anything yet?" I said, "No, I'm still lucid."

That was the last thing I remember.

inside AviatorDave
Originally uploaded by gail on the web.
My next memory was rolling along on the gurney again, with the doctor alongside. Surprisingly, I had the presence of mind to ask him whether he was successful in getting a tissue sample, and he said that he did and that everything went well. By 10:00 I was allowed to have a drink, and Gail joined me in the recovery room. I regained my equilibrium quickly, but was still groggy, and we came home for a long nap.