Dad had a gastroscopy and colonoscopy yesterday. The gastroscopy came back ‘clear’ in the sense that it didn’t detect any bleeding and therefore didn’t detect a cause for the bleeding either.
The colonoscopy showed that the first (or is it last?) 8 inches of his bowel (before exiting his stoma) to be the cause of his ongoing bleeding. He’s having an operation this afternoon (NZ time) to cauterize the length of bowel that is causing the bleeding. Apparently that’ll be quite painful, but I’m guessing that the morphine he’s on will help mask some of the discomfort.
If the cauterizing doesn’t work they’ll have to look at cutting that bit of the bowel out and relocating (actually re-creating) his stoma elsewhere (Leave your suggestions in the comments section below). Apparently this would be quite a ‘process’ and involve other complications.
Dad found out the cost of each unit of blood and worked out that he’s had many thousands of dollars worth of blood this year. He expects that the doctors will be pretty keen to stop all that blood money going – literally – down the drain. I suggested that he was now a drain on society.
Having not seen Dad for six months, I wondered if I’d be shocked when I saw him. No I wasn’t, but by the same token, I’m not sure what it would have taken to shock me. If he’d been playing his trombone while riding a unicycle – THEN I would have been shocked.
Entering the hospital room and making the sign of the cross probably wasn’t the best, most thoughtful greeting I could have given him! You live, you learn (or in my case, 1 out of 2 ain’t bad).