Bone scan

Bone scan

Back in May last year I had to have a bone scan to check if my bowel/colon and prostate cancer had spread to my skeleton. The results were negative, but as part of my ongoing treatment for prostate cancer I had to have a second bone scan yesterday.

The scan took place at University Hospital, Lewisham, and Sue came with me to keep me company … and to drive me home if I felt unwell afterwards. My appointment was for 10.30am, and I wanted to make sure that I was in the Nuclear Medicine Department well beforehand. In fact, we were so early that we were able to go to the local bakers – H Hirst & Sons – for breakfast. We both ate a delicious sausage in a bun, washed down with a very good mug of cafe latte.

Bone scan

Accompanied by Sue, I signed in at Radiology Department’s reception desk and then we took the rather tortuous route from the desk to the seating area outside the Nuclear Medicine Department. Once there, I was asked to fill in a questionnaire about previous scans that I had had before I was fitted with a cannula. I and the other patients then had to wait for the radioactive material we were going to be injected with to arrive from Bart’s Hospital. Its arrival was delayed by heavy traffic, but the courier finally delivered it at 11.00am.

By 11.30am I had been intravenously injected with a small quantity of radioactive material and then told to come back in three hours for my scan. I was also told to drink at least a litre of water during those three hours. This three-hour gap and the water was to help the radioactive material in my blood to fully circulate around my body.

Sue and I decided to go for a walk to fill part of the time we had on our hands, and although is was very overcast, we were able to walk around the edge of the northern part of the nearby Ladywell Fields, …

… a distance of nearly 2.5 miles. With the occasional stop for me to drink some of the water I had taken with me, this took us just over an hour and a half. We then returned to the hospital and after walking what seemed to be at least a mile along corridors that snaked through the hospital’s buildings, we found the onsite restaurant where we were able to have a very reasonably-priced snack lunch.

By the time we had eaten lunch and returned to the Nuclear Medicine Department, it was just after 2.00pm, and although I was not expecting to be scanned before 2.30pm, I actually went into the room housing the scanner at just after 2.15pm. The scan took about thirty minutes, and at the end I was told that there had been no change since my previous scan … which was good news.

It had begun to rain by the time we got back to the car park, and this and the slightly heavier traffic we had to drive through to get home slowed us down somewhat. Nevertheless, we were back home by 3.15pm and having a refreshing drink … and a chance to rest and recuperate.

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Autor: Robert (Bob) Cordery / Wargaming Miscellany

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