Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

New Machine in my life

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #16
    Good on you Weston.

    I've been through it and all was OK - my PSA was 0.10ppm when I saw my Urologist and Radiation Oncologists about a week or so later about the radiation treatment.

    I am on the hormone therapy now and going very well.

    I am surprised that you had full bowels as I had to have an enema every day before and during the radiation process - so as not to leave a "cooked sausage" that might have been hard to pass.

    I had to have a full bladder (1 liter) for 2 hours before and "hold onto it" during the treatment - I sure was glad to get rid of it. The road to the hospital was a lot rougher then normal -a lot - and hanging onto the fluid in my bladder was quite a task.

    My program was every day Mon>Fri for 7 weeks (5 x 7 = 35). I could see most of what was going on on a monitor in the radiation room. They took an x-ray every Tuesday and it was posted to the Radiation Oncologist and he discussed it with my wife and I - very informative and very helpful -and he took as long as we required which was very helpful indeed. The Urologist was extremely good and informative too.

    I really could not have asked for more from the staff at the radiation centre - they were top class.

    My/our General Practitioner (GP) local doctor as always was excellent too.

    No bowel or other/any problems afterward.

    The machine was pretty well the same as the one in your pic.

    I had my prostate removed just over 10 years ago and I am going very well.

    I wish you all that you and yours wish for yourselves.
    Last edited by oldtiffie; 03-10-2015, 01:37 AM.

    Comment


    • #17
      Day 3. Would not even post today, as everything was unremarkable except that the machine broke down. Was setting up for my last "field" as they call it when one of the leaves or shutters that sets the radiation aperture stuck. The technician was in the area so they had me dismount and wait, pee a little and drink some more water. Back on the table, they had to line me up again with my tattoos, do another CT scan and then complete the last shot - the latter lasting a whole 10-15 seconds.

      I am sure that they had my good health in mind and wanted me to get the full benefit, but I am also sure that they wanted to be able to bill for that 10-15 seconds.
      Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
      ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

      Comment


      • #18
        I did some radiation for skin cancer on my nose a few years ago. The charges always seemed huge. Something like $168 every day and then an additional $200 - $250 when the doctor talked monthly. That consisted of a blood pressure check and short conversation with the doc like, "Yes, that looks about like we expect. Any questions?" And the question I asked he couldn't answer.

        Since it was on my face they had lead disks over the eyes. Nevertheless, when the radiation came on my whole, normally dark field of vision lit up. I asked about that and he knew nothing about it. An email to the machine manufacturer got a response that they encountered that rarely but didn't now why either. Huh!

        As you mention, the whole thing doesn't (normally) take long. But it was kind of an interesting and slightly surreal trip. I'm lying down, constrained and blind with the eye protection. The technicians say goodbye and you hear the footsteps recede. Then you hear the doors close. And then a series of three relay clicks. The door interlock clicks and you know you're locked in the room with this thing. Then the machine next to me clicks and hums, then it clicks again and the light comes on. It had a certain inevitable march and finality to it. But they always came back and rescued me.
        .
        "People will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time they will pick themselves up and carry on" : Winston Churchill

        Comment


        • #19
          Hard luck about the costs etc. as I don't have to pay anything for any medical item - at all (Hospitals included) - as I am a Veterans Affairs "Gold Card" holder. I have the option of paying my own way in my car and getting paid $AU 0.45 (45 cents) a Kilometre (~0.6 miles) or have a taxi/cab take my wife and I to and from the procedure etc. (at DVA expense).

          https://www.google.com.au/?gws_rd=ssl#q=dva+gold+card

          Dispensary (drug store/pharmaceutical) prescription item cost both my wife and I AU$ 6.50 each until we reach a set limit (called our "safety net") after which they are free for the remainder of each calendar year.

          https://www.google.com.au/?gws_rd=ss...+prescriptions

          It makes life and expenses a lot easier.

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by oldtiffie View Post
            Hard luck about the costs ...

            ... makes life and expenses a lot easier.
            (Sigh...) I suppose I brought it up, mentioning getting paid, but I don't want this thread to turn into a debate on the merits and shortcomings of various healthcare systems, particularly when there is nothing we or I can do to change things in the short term.

            When all this is over I will try to give an accounting of the costs and then welcome everyone to brag.
            Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
            ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

            Comment


            • #21
              Sorry Weston - will comply.

              Comment


              • #22
                See my post at the "other" thread:

                http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/thr...522#post972522

                Comment


                • #23
                  Sigh. Sorry about having to become acquainted with a new machine ...

                  I got to know your machine's brother a few years ago. (Or maybe cousin? Mine
                  was a "Novalis"...). Anyway, they are pretty neat machines. They use linear
                  accelerators to generate high-power X-rays. The head of the machine rotates
                  around you, zapping the target from different angles. As it does, they change
                  the shape of the beam so that it conforms (to within something like 0.1mm)
                  to the shape of the target as seen from that angle. The notion is that the cumulative
                  dose of x-rays is high enough to do real damage only where the multiple beams
                  cross --- which should be just the target. They also took imaging x-rays before and
                  after each session to see _exactly_ where I, and Spanky-the-tumor, were on the
                  table, and aligned the high-power beam accordingly (think of it as edge-finding :-).
                  A lot of serious computing power and precision mechanical widgetry in the machine!

                  Since then, Spanky hasn't shown any additional signs of life in my yearly MRIs, so I
                  guess I'm a happy customer.

                  Good Luck
                  Frank

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Weston Bye View Post

                    ...The most noticeable side effects are hot flashes ...
                    A lady friend of mine is adamant that it is not a hot flush but a power surge.

                    George

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by fjk View Post
                      Sigh. Sorry about having to become acquainted with a new machine ...

                      I got to know your machine's brother a few years ago. (Or maybe cousin? Mine
                      was a "Novalis"...). Anyway, they are pretty neat machines. They use linear
                      accelerators to generate high-power X-rays. The head of the machine rotates
                      around you, zapping the target from different angles. As it does, they change
                      the shape of the beam so that it conforms (to within something like 0.1mm)
                      to the shape of the target as seen from that angle. The notion is that the cumulative
                      dose of x-rays is high enough to do real damage only where the multiple beams
                      cross --- which should be just the target. They also took imaging x-rays before and
                      after each session to see _exactly_ where I, and Spanky-the-tumor, were on the
                      table, and aligned the high-power beam accordingly (think of it as edge-finding :-).
                      A lot of serious computing power and precision mechanical widgetry in the machine!

                      Since then, Spanky hasn't shown any additional signs of life in my yearly MRIs, so I
                      guess I'm a happy customer.

                      Good Luck
                      Frank
                      That is an excellent description of the radiation therapy process Frank.

                      Many thanks.

                      I should make a couple of points regarding MRI's and CT's etc. as I understood my Radiation Oncologist who made sure that my wife and I understood all that we needed to know about those radiation processes as well as apart from the radiation therapy but used in conjunction with it. We used to see him at 5 monthly intervals (he retired last Christmas) as we do with the Urologist.

                      We see our General Practitioner - aka GP and local Doctor 2-weekly.

                      All are really excellent in all ways and we are as well as we are because of them.

                      But back to the Radiation Oncologist and MRI's and CT's etc.

                      First of al he said that the PSA is the average rate of prostate cancer - both before and after the removal of the Prostate - and that PSA post operation is the normal way of assessing the level of cancer and its rate of progression (increase) and regression (loss).

                      Next, the cancer is a "soft tissue" item and the smallest (normally) size of an individual cancer that they/it can detect is about 2 to 3 mm (say 0.08" to 0.12"). It will not normally detect anything less so there could (will?) be a lot of cancer floating/being around that they may/will miss "seeing".

                      PSA will pick up the sum total of cancer that is not less (i.e. under) than 0.01PPM (parts per million) and that it is more the rate of change rather that the "steady state" of PSA that is of concern.

                      If the PSA is "flat lining" it is of a lot less risk that an PSA that is rising quickly.

                      When I was doing my daily radiation therapy (daily for 7 weeks - 5 x 7 = 35 times) the technicians/Radiologist took several x-rays and sent them to the Oncologist every Tuesday for our (wife and I) weekly appointment with him for assessment and discussion with us.

                      After about 2 weeks my radiation therapy my PSA was reduced to 0.01ppm - so we knew it was there as it was at or more than the 0.01ppm "floor" that the PSA test could detect.

                      It started to rise - slowly but accelerating - after the radiation therapy and I commenced the hormone therapy which is going very well.

                      There was no cancer showing in my bones/skeleton with the "Bone scan" x-rays.

                      I'd rather I didn't have cancer but I did and still do and will have it for the rest of my life.

                      Every one - Doctors and my wife and I - are happy as we can be in the circumstances - and we are very much relieved and getting on with our lives very well.

                      My wife and I will adjust if and as necessary as we go along.

                      The radiation beam was aimed at the pocket that the prostate and its surrounds were removed from - so it was "localised" - my prostate and its adjacent lymph node glands were removed.
                      Last edited by oldtiffie; 03-12-2015, 08:24 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Day 5, uneventful.

                        As has been mentioned, tattoos are a part of the process. No big deal.

                        However, in an effort to find some humorous relief, I am contemplating having my tats "embellished" at a tattoo parlor after the process is over. Probably never get to show them off, considering the location...

                        Here is some idle doodling:

                        Anybody have any ideas?
                        Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
                        ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Weston, they told us at a patients information meeting that the womenfolk having tattoos on their breasts could have these later changed at hospital expense to a more decorative design, a butterfly for example. No one had any appropriate suggestion for what us men should have!

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Some would say that as many who have had their prostate removed and have had or are on hormone therapy as a result it and who have "man boobs", cannot get or hold an erection or ejaculate, have little or no libido and who have an increase in women's hormones - hot flushes too??!! - and lack "drive" are no longer "real men" and are more toward the female than the male are thereby not "men" at all and don't need tattoos like "real men" do.

                            If all or most of that is the case then there is no need to get a "male" tattoo because of hormone therapy.

                            But don't forget your hand-bag and cosmetics (and use them).

                            Is getting such a tattoo a "bit tatty"?

                            https://www.google.com.au/?gws_rd=ssl#q=tatty

                            https://www.google.com.au/?gws_rd=ssl#q=tatty

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Many of us who had time in the Navy will recall ("others" of course - never "us") chasing or hoping for some luck and finding some "tatty old bit" (for what ever purpose).

                              As a tattoo is a "tat" would tatty Old bit have been tattoo-ed and if she had it for radiation therapy I suspect that some who "got lucky" (with "her"??) might have cause for concern.

                              http://www.theauthenticperishers.co....menu/tatty.htm

                              https://www.google.com.au/?gws_rd=ss...sailors+friend

                              But at least our families knew we were (are??) "pure" - and all thanks to Hormone therapy (with or without tattoo embellishment).

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Weston Bye View Post
                                Anybody have any ideas?
                                If you can see this dot
                                You're too close

                                ?

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X