That means of course that I will have to glug down two bottles of the hideous chalky milky nauseating contrast medium stuff exactly one week after my final chemotherapy session. Oh please do stay tuned for that, it should be just all kinds of fun and excitement. But if you had plans to be anywhere near the radiology waiting room at Our Lady of the Damned on that day, I seriously advise you to think about canceling. It's not going to be pretty.
Anyway, I'm not sure why the oncologist prefers the CT scans to a PET scan. Possibly because a PET scan runs about $5,000 while the full series of CT scans will only cost around $800. But it may also be because I already have baseline CT scans of my tumors before treatment, whereas I've never had a PET scan yet. And I've read that some radiologists do prefer CT scans over PET scans for my type of tumor because the PETs tend to produce a lot of false positives. But then so do the CT scans. So who knows.
I'll have the scans on Thursday February 1st, then I'll get the results at my next oncology clinic appointment which is Tuesday February 6th. This is where the PSA comes in. The acronym "PSA" conveniently stands for both pre-scan anxiety, and post-scan anxiety, to cover all the days in between now and the moment when some 12 year old resident I've never seen before in my life tells me whether or not the deadly cancer cells are still lurking in my body. These are the days when molars are ground to dust, fingernails are gnawed to bloody stubs, and much quality time spent bonding with comforting old pals like Ben and Jerry. If I had any hair, I would probably be giving myself compulsive trims at midnight.
If the news is bad it will be extremely disappointing and discouraging, but it's far from the end of the line. There are still a bunch of promising tools in my toolbox, aggressive and miserable but potentially effective options. I've done lots of research and I'm prepared to deal assertively with whatever they throw at me. But right now I'm just focusing on getting myself through the next two weeks with all my faculties intact, even if that means curling up under my desk with a box of Ring Dings and the complete Patsy Cline box set. Y'all are welcome to crawl up under here with me, if you're so inclined.