Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Dad's MRI checkup

I had a meeting to attend in the city of Toronto and that made it easy to pop in to see Dad and his doctor. Dad and his volunteer driver are to meet me at the oncologist’s office. I do not know how I convinced them to let me go but I was concerned and I think Mom know that someone else ought to be there with him, other than the Cancer Society volunteer. Many patients do not take in all the information that a doctor is giving to them. They shut out extraneous or indigestible information and only take in what they can face at the time. I know Dad is not processing information all that well and I is glad that I met him there. We were never sure how much he can hear and how much he understands.

If his tumour comes back, they need to be on top of this. Patients are supposedly protected by Canadian privacy laws, but if a patient has an unseen comorbidity, and symptoms such as dementia, then they are at risk. An individual is unable to make the right choices. With mom so ill and frail with her cancerous growths, she is not thinking clearly either.

I waited for hours in the hospital waiting room outside the doctor’s office. Dad has not turned up yet for his appointment. I do not know how to find him, or even if he has made it to Toronto, he is to have his MRI and then go directly to her office where I wait. I phoned Mom on my cell but she has not heard anything from them. We always dread the phone ringing and never know what to expect next.

Eventually, Dad and his volunteer driver turn up. The delays in having the MRI done have set them back an hour. They managed to have the MRI forwarded to this oncologist right away. I quite like the doctor and her bedside manner. Dad is not clear on some details. She spoke well with him, speaking more loudly than usual due to his hearing problems. I wrote everything down, as always. I should have bought a little ring-bound book for this, but I use my agenda.

His tumour has not regrown yet, although most do since they cannot excise all of it due to the danger of its location.