I haven’t been as nervous about seeing the doctor as I was this morning. Probably due to being so anxious to hear what my options were in regards to my Vocal Fold Paralysis.
Let’s start with the good news:
1. I’m down another 8 lbs. I’m 15 lbs. away from my goal of losing 100 lbs. in the year after my Thyroidectomy, which is going to happen. I just need to watch myself while on vacation!
2. Blood pressure and pulse are good.
3. I’m good to go for vacation in Vegas next month. Going to celebrate being Cancer-free while there!
4. My work is awesome with being ok with me taking time off for Doctors appointments and surgeries.
Disappointing, but not bad news:
1. Due to where my Laryngeal nerve was resected during my Thyroidectomy and Neck dissection, I’m not a candidate for the Laryngeal Nerve Reinnervation procedure that I’d hoped to have done.
a. There is another option, but it’s kind of tricky to explain, and it would take 1.5 years to heal and do its thing. He said he can take a chunk of muscle and connect it to a different muscle and then connect that to the Laryngeal nerve. Although, I might be able to get this done later on down the road, even if I get the implant done now.
b. I could do nothing about it, and just deal with not having a voice, swallowing problems, and other issues.
While I was REALLY hoping that I’d be able to have the Re-Innervation surgery, all is not terrible. It’s not the end of the world. I’ll be awake with only local anesthesia for the implant surgery, which doesn’t sound like fun, since it’s scheduled to be a 3 hour gig. I’ll have a scope down my nose the whole time as they cut my neck open and drill into my larynx. Not fun. But necessary as I’ll need to make sounds so that they’ll find the right size and location for the implant. I’ll have to stay in the hospital for around 24 hours so they can monitor my breathing and swelling. When the scheduler came in to talk to me about she said Dr. Merati’s first opening is Nov. 12th. I was disappointed that it was a Tuesday so I asked if there was any other day’s available? She said, “Sure, the 19th, 26th, etc.” “Wait a minute” I said, “those ARE ALL Tuesdays”. Damn. So, I said, “Ok, the 12th will work just fine.” She left to go check on the schedule for my Pre-Op appointment. While she was away I thought to myself, “Hmmm, isn’t Thanksgiving coming up? I get Thursday and Friday as paid days off now!” She came back in and I said, “We should change this to the 26th, that way I won’t have to take so many days off of work!” She agreed and said, “No problem.”
So my Pre-Op appointment is coming up on the 28thof October. They’ll run me through some tests to make sure I’m healthy enough for it, blah blah blah. I leave for Vegas on Saturday the 2nd, and return Saturday the 9th. 2 weeks later, I should have a stronger voice, and less problems swallowing! I’ll have to go in a couple weeks later and work with a Speech Therapist also, looking forward to that, she’s pretty cool.
I really enjoy speaking with Dr. Merati. He’s a cool dude. He’s able to talk to you without making you feel dumb, and explains things in an easier to understand way. The way he talks to you, it makes it easy to trust him and what he recommends I do. I feel like he has a genuine sense of sympathy for what I’ve been through this last year. I appreciate that.