Three weeks ago I went to Eugene to consult with a gastroenterologist. He did an ERCP which is medical for stuffing a tube down my throat and playing peek-a-boo with my pancreas.
The results were both encouraging and depressing, they ruled out cancer but the debris left in the cyst was so extensive that they couldn’t do anything about it. The doctor, good guy and very on top of his game, assured me that if he inserted a stint the debris would just clog it in a matter of days and I’d be no better off than I am now. He was able to put a stint in my bile duct so that my liver could begin to function normally and the reports from friends and family indicate that this was a success. (I stopped turning yellow and they tell me this is an improvement. Didn’t do much for the terrible itching but I have hopes that once the cyst is dealt with they can do more for the liver.)
The depressing part was that the only folks competent to do a more extensive gut excavation are the nice people at Virginia Mason in Seattle. So that’s where I’m headed. They will again play peek-a-boo and then put in a large drain so that I can be rid of the cyst. How long and how complex this will be can’t be determined until they get in and get a look.
So I will work at maintaining the blog, but there my be even longer periods of inactivity coming. This isn’t because I’ve lost interest in your art and your successes but because it is hard to gather news with a tube down your throat.
I’ll let you know when I get back how successful and how much more they have found that they need to do. (This is like using a contractor, you know that the estimate is just a guideline and that as soon as they have the flooring torn up and the sink pulled out of the wall they will discover a flange or a strut which has to be replaced and in order to get at it they will have to disassemble the foundation, but that will only take another year and a half and what’s so bad about living in a place where the roof leaks, the plumbing doesn’t work and there are guys with number thirteen work boots marching through day and night?)
I’ll see you next week with more news.