This is a Public Service Announcement…

“We look forward to serving your Gastroenterology needs.” That’s what is written on the summary sheet my new internist gave me last week. Well guess what? I am not looking forward to it.

Let me begin by saying how proud I was of myself (much the way a newly potty trained child is) for undergoing a complete physical exam. As I have mentioned before, my dad died of cancer at the age of 53 so going to the doctor, while necessary, is not something I enjoy doing. For years, after a few health scares of my own, I had to do some serious talking to myself (and play Motorhead’s Ace of Spades) to get through a doctor’s appointment. Most of the anxiety had lifted, however, after five plus years of routine (i.e. scare-free) examinations.

This past November my OB/GYN announced that I had borderline high blood pressure (just another mid-life indignity) and needed to see someone else to get it treated. So last week I went for my official new patient appointment with the internist. I was feeling fairly upbeat. I had already gone through all the women-specific tests, had started a medication for the borderline high blood pressure and had no other issues to speak of. Figured I’d be in and out within 30 minutes. Wrong. Unbeknownst to me, if you have a parent or sibling who was diagnosed with polyps during a routine colonoscopy you must have one yourself–ten years prior to the age they were when treated. My dad had some polyps removed at the age of 50. That means two plus years ago I was supposed to have a date with a colonoscope. To quote Ren and Stimpy, “Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy.”

Today, I will pull up my big girl pants and call to make an appointment for my first colonoscopy. I’ll be sure to keep you posted. In the meantime…

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8 responses

  1. I’m sure you’ve heard all of the positives before about colonoscopy: the doc can remove any polyps as he/she is doing the ‘scope, so it’s a 2 for 1 procedure. And they use REALLY good drugs! The worst part is the prep. 😦 I’ll be thinking happy thoughts and saying a prayer for you!

    Honestly? I’m more concerned about your blood pressure. I would not expect a slim, healthy person of your age to be having any issues with it. Seriously. Makes me wonder if it runs in your family.

    Hahaha…sorry, just an occupational hazard. 😉

    • I appreciate the pep talk and the good vibes! Am wondering why they can’t give me the drugs the day before the colonoscopy too?! Apparently, I cannot have anything to eat (save clear liquids) that day! I am sure I will be delightful to be around by the time I have to take my pre-procedure prep. Sheesh.

      You nailed the reason behind the high blood pressure. Another gift from my dad. Good thing I REALLY loved (love) him. Blood pressure is perfect now and I am on lowest dose of medication so it’s all good. Thanks for your concern Mel. Clearly you chose your profession well. 😉

      • On the clear fluids the day of prep, I was considering telling you to do that anyway. I’m glad that’s now a standard procedure. Just think, less to “clear out”. Clear fluids do include chicken broth, popsicles, & jello though (if I remember correctly). Oh, and I’m pretty sure SWEET TEA qualifies…not that you still indulge in that piece of Southernness anymore, lol!
        I’m sure BernieDawg and MikeInValdosta would argue vodka is a clear fluid, hahahaha!

  2. Getting old SUCKS. I’m glad you’re taking care of you though. I have to start getting mammograms starting next year because my Grandma had breast cancer at 35, so starting at 30 I get mammograms. Happy. Happy. Joy. Joy. INDEED.

  3. i had my 1st colonoscopy 2 weeks ago. my father had colon cancer so i have to have earlier than most people too. lucky us. it wasn’t that bad. the hardest part of the prep for me was drinking all of that liquid. i felt like a bloated whale.

    here’s a tip, i was apparently a little loopy when i woke up from the procedure and was talking nonsense that had the nurses laughing. my friend said she kicked herself for not videotaping the whole thing. i don’t remember a thing.

    you may want to have someone videotape you just for fun. 😉

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