Friday, September 7, 2012
I was diagnosed with cancer a little more than 3 years ago on August 17th, 2009. I've been curious to know how many appointments I've had since then, so like Jeff Probst might say, "Let's tally the vote."
Yesterday, at my most recent MUGA, I requested that they print out all the tests I'd had in their facility. Last night, I sat down and added my doctor's appointments and chemos - going through old calendars, my iPhone, and relying on memory. It helps that all of my oncology appointments have been Wednesdays. The final number may be more or less than I remembered, as once you go as regularly as I do, you just stop keeping physical track.
To date, I have had:
1 Bone Scan
1 Dexa Scan
6 chest x-rays
2 shoulder x-rays
1 cyst removal
1 blood transfusion
That's the test/procedure tally.
Now on to doctor visits and chemos. I have been to chemo and seen doctors in an appointment setting, as near as I can tell, 144 times. (And, I suspect that number might be low).
Adding it up, that's over 200 medical appointments in 1000 days, and I'm not including hospitalizations and surgeries in that time.
An astonishing 20% of my time in the last three years has been in dealing with cancer.
It gets worse. Not one of those appointments took less than 2 hours. Many took a great deal longer, often up to 8 hours, especially the chemos. If I average them out at 4 hours, (which I know for sure is low) that means I have spent 800 hours dealing with medical appointments. Again, this doesn't include hospitalizations and surgeries. I am guessing if I'd started out keeping an accurate count, it might be a lot higher.
It's pretty clear when tallying these numbers that cancer does not only steal your health, it robs you of a great deal of time.
If I'd spent that much time doing anything else, I'd be an expert by now. In 800 hours, I could have learned to play the piano, or paint. I could have gotten my commercial pilot's certificate. I could have gone to the moon and back - five times. I could have written a book.
Heck, if I put my mind to it, I could have even had a clean house.
Posted by Ann aka ButDoctorIHatePink at 8:40 PM