Mom and I walked back to the examination room and the nurse followed us in. We stopped off at the scales, my weight was not too bad… I found out why later! The kind nurse asked the same questions she typically would ask only this time I had some unique answers for her. Finally, my Doctor came in. She said she did not like the way I looked, my coloring, my hollow eyes, etc… I explained to her that my stomach issues had worsened and that now I also had a bloated tummy on top of everything else. She had me lie back on the table and then she saw it, the basketball inside my belly, or that is what it looked like. My mom was very surprised, too, as I had not really shown her what my bloat looked like. My Doctor is probably one of the sweetest, most kind and thoughtful physicians I have ever known, her look of concern was very evident.
She told Mom and I that we needed to get an abdominal, pelvic and transvaginal ultrasound, as well as blood work, stat. She kept utilizing that word more often than I had ever heard it before or ever wanted to hear it. Dad, Mom and I left the office and headed home for a few before we had to be back to Memorial Hospital for the tests. Making a way too long story a bit shorter, I drove Mom and I to the hospital for my tests. There was a difference in the ultrasound techs on this particular day, typically when I had ultrasounds before the tech would make small talk, laugh, ask why I was there, etc… Not on this day, not at all. She was a sweet, young girl and she barely spoke as she ran the wand over the upper right part of my abdomen, over and over again. She did ask me if I had blood work done yet and I told her that was next. The moment one test would finish, the techs would say, “These results need to get to Dr. Haynes STAT!” That word again!
That evening we went home and rested and waited to hear any results, I had no idea that results would be in the very next morning! Wednesday morning, March 1st, my Doctor called me. She asked how I was doing and said that my ultrasound showed fluid in my abdomen and that my ovaries were very “cysty”. Dr. Haynes went on to say that we needed to go back to the hospital that afternoon to have a CT scan with contrast of my abdomen and then they needed to drain the fluid off of my tummy to give me relief and so that the fluid could be sent away to be tested. After she finished her explanations, I finally said, “So, Doc, what are we looking for with the fluid?” A very short, but meaningful pause occurred, then she said, “Lynn, we are looking for cancer.” I remember sitting there for a moment, soaking those last words in, “Lynn, we are looking for cancer.” Mom walked out and asked me what she said and I repeated that last phrase to my Mom, she did not seem as surprised as I felt inside.
That afternoon we went and had the CT scan with contrast and the fluid drained, it was all very interesting. The Doctor and his assistant drained 2 liters of fluid off of my abdomen, 2 liters! ( Remember when I said my weight was not too bad? Well, it was really because of the fluid that had built up in my stomach, not because I had gained any meaningful weight! ) My sister Pam joined us at the hospital because my poor Mom was needing some support at this point. We drove home together and my doctor’s office called and stated that we needed to come in to her office at 5:15 for a face to face meeting. All of a sudden everything started adding up in my head, the word stat being thrown around for the past 24 hours, tests being completed and results back so quickly, a face to face meeting with my doctor after hours, etc…. This is probably not going to be in my favor, is it??