On being vacuumed — 7 Comments

  1. Fill yer boots. Have a good winge. You have a vast readership all rooting for you. Your sense of humour does us all good.

  2. Being given vivid and very personal expression of what it’s like to go through the various toils of life is useful. Apart from preparing us for what we too may face, it’s also helpful when you’re trying to understand what some other friend or kin is going through, especially if they’re the types who say little or nothing.
    A very close friend is going through breast cancer treatment, but she never offers any information about the mechanisms of the treatment, the levels of pain and discomfort, the other consequences on her life etc., the lack of which information makes it harder either to empathise or to recognise what types of help and support would be most beneficial, because we really want to help and support her, only she won’t tell us how.
    So your own ‘lived experience’, coupled with your uncanny ability to express it colourfully, can only help others to understand those conditions and their consequences better.

  3. My wife had a lump pop up between neck and left side shoulder about the size of a large grape.
    ENT consultant had a butchers then stuck a “fuck off sized needle” (medical jargon) in it to “get some cells” that “put her on the ceiling” she said.
    Biopsy was the famous “inconclusive” so he suggested opening her neck and removing the lump.
    In she went full frankenstein cut. He took the lump out right enough and because “it didnt look quite right” he removed half of her thyroid. Stapled her neck up and home she came a couple of days later now actually looking like frankenstein. She thought her head was in danger of falling off for about a week or so.

    Next consultation he told us they had “sliced and diced” the thyroid and found a couple of cancers “about the size of a pinhead”. So he was going to do a repeat operation to remove the other half of her thyroid “just in case” which would lead to a life utterly dependant on fake, sorry, pharma thyroxin, to be taken in tablet form but the good news was “as it is the NHS that has disfigured you the tablets are free for life” followed by a “radiation treatment” in Manchester, 100 miles away from home and family.

    My wife was as calm as anything. She just had one quesdtion about the two scars. He laughed and said “Oh no. What I will do is cut the first scar out completely and give you a mini neck lift to leave just one scar which will fade into a neck line.”
    We both rather liked this chap.

    Second op came and went and once her staples were out they sent her to Christies in Manchester where they gave her a glass of radiated orange juice and put her in a sterile isolation chamber type room where she powered all the lights and a telly all by herself.
    (I might be making the powered bit up.)
    The doctor there told her the more frequently she showered the quicker the radiation left her body. Well that was all the incentive she needed as she had two young boys at home who she missed terribly so it was five or six showers a day.
    After a bare seven days she was back in her hometown BUT she had to stay at her mothers for a week as apparently there was a chance, despite all the electronics showing the raidiation had gone, that some may remain and render the boys infertile. Seemed far fetched to her and I but back then we trusted the NHS so complied.

    The staff at Christies could not believe she had rid herself of radiation so quickly. It ‘normally took at least a fortnight they said.

    That all took place 20 odd years ago. Cannot recall the exact year. She is still on thyroid tablets but now she is sixty and her formerly brilliant indian GP has been replaced with an incompetent indian GP who wants her to have a blood test to “check her thyroid levels” When she reminded her she has no thyroids so her thyroid level cannot go up nor down unless she fucks up and misses a dose or takes two in the same day, the dozy GP smiled and said “bodies change”!

    Truth be told knowing what we know now we would give the molasses and baking soda a fair go before going anyhere near the NHS.

    The surgeon/consultant told us at the last consultation just after her second operation he was off to Australia as he had had enougb of NHS box ticking and penny pinching and though he was dreading taking his five daughters to the “land of Oz” the opportunity to kit out his own operating theatre and selecting his own team was too good an opportunity to miss.
    His replacement was a lovely Chinese locum who was brilliant however the original consultant had convinced him that he too should emigrate to Australia so we only saw the ‘new guy’ once!
    The lump was a benign “one of those thingss”!!!

    • Your NHS seems to have quite a bit in common with out HSE [overrun with bureaucrats and employing Indian staff].

      The first problem I had was getting into the system. My doctor should have done more, but he’s under a load of stress at the moment trying to cope with a sudden huge influx of immigrant patients. I got onto the system finally after a couple of weeks and am now in the hands of an excellent surgeon/specialist/consultant/Professor. He’s Irish, is very frank and honest and very easy to talk to. I googled him and the page filled with results from academia all singing his praises.

      Anyhows in my last visit he took three or four samples from the black cauliflower inside my nostrils, and an extra sample from my These have been dispatched for biopsy and I’m now awaiting results [about another week to go?]. He’s also concerned that my lymph nodes are swollen [and have been for well over a month] and has put me on my fifth course of antibiotics. The major problem with the latter is that I am banished from any alcohol for the duration of the course and for a few days after. No nightcaps so. Roll on next week!

      Another reason I liked Prof [what his staff call him] is that he asked if I smoked. I said I was a pipe man. He laughed and said pipes were grand [or words to that effect].

  4. Hi Grandad,

    Keep your thoughts coming.

    a) It is good to get it off your chest (or nose as the case may be).
    b) Although it may not make any difference, we are listening/ reading, and we are thinking of all of you.

    • Scribbling about it is quite cathartic I must admit but I still can’t quite understand why anyone would want to read about my little gripes, niggles and other problems. People are strange…

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