In nutshell (a darn big one), here is the primary reason that I haven't posted anything for several months. I don't usually publish personal stuff about myself here, but because of my long and unexplained absence, I feel compelled to do so.
After battling lung cancer, breast cancer, and finally terminal brain cancer, my mom died in the 64th year of her life.
My father had a couple of different cancers and ultimately died of throat cancer, this also occurred during his 64th year.
I recently completed my 64th year and have to admit that I was a bit worried going into it. Being a proactive sort of person, I embarked on a grand tour of all the "specialists" I could think of. What follows is a list of them and what they found (also some conditions that I already knew about).
Rheumatologist (ongoing) - I've had a ton of injures and several broken bones in my life, so it's no surprise that I have arthritis in several places. I've yet to enter into any treatment yet.
Neurologist (ongoing and recent) - I have a herniated disc in my lower back at L5-S1. An update revealed that it has been made worse by the addition of several bone spurs in the area. Surgeries at L5/S1 are difficult, recovery is very painful, and they are usually at least partially, if not fully unsuccessful. In fact, sometimes the condition is worse afterwards. My surgeon (that did my earlier spinal surgery), is a great one, and he advises against having it. I agree. I have a pretty strong disposition and can tolerate and/or ignore a lot of pain. So far, I've pretty much learned to live with it (with no pain killers).
Orthopedist (ongoing) - I've had a ruptured ACL in my right knee for a long time. I've just lived with it, but once again, I've grown some bone spurs in the area. As you know, I hike a lot and don't really allow it to slow me down much.
Dermatologist (recent) - A top of head to tip of toe examination, resulted in him freezing 12 precancerous things off of me.
Gastroenterologist (recent) - As recommended, I get a colonoscopy every 5 years. It has only been three years since my last one, but hey, it's my 64th year and my insurance will pay for it. He has found and snipped out a couple of polyps every time he's been "in there." The polyps have always been benign. NOT this time though. I had three of them and one was precancerous.
Endocrinologist (ongoing) - As many of you know, I had thyroid cancer several years ago. Two surgeries later and my thyroid and related cancer was removed. The endocrinologist now monitors my blood and prescribes medication to keep me alive and functioning. A lab does a complete workup on my blood and this time it came up with an abnormally high PSA (Prostate Specific Antigen) reading. He strongly advised that I immediately contact a urologist. If you are so inclined, here is a link to post 1 of 4 relating to my thyroid cancer.
Urologist (recent) - My first visit to this specialist made the danger of my 64th year a reality.
To be continued....
Don't worry, I'll be back to my regular posting afterwards!