LifeAfterDx--Diabetes Uncensored

A internet journal from one of the first T1 Diabetics to use continuous glucose monitoring. Copyright 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

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Location: New Mexico, United States

Hi! I’m William “Lee” Dubois (called either Wil or Lee, depending what part of the internet you’re on). I’m a diabetes columnist and the author of four books about diabetes that have collectively won 16 national and international book awards. (Hey, if you can’t brag about yourself on your own blog, where can you??) I have the great good fortune to pen the edgy Dear Abby-style advice column every Saturday at Diabetes Mine; write the Diabetes Simplified column for dLife; and am one of the ShareCare diabetes experts. My work also appears in Diabetic Living and Diabetes Self-Management magazines. In addition to writing, I’ve spent the last half-dozen years running the diabetes education program for a rural non-profit clinic in the mountains of New Mexico. Don’t worry, I’ll get some rest after the cure. LifeAfterDx is my personal home base, where I get to say what and how I feel about diabetes and… you know… life, free from the red pens of editors (all of whom I adore, of course!).

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Because God thinks diabetes isn’t enough for me to write about

Blue-grey, the smoke wafts upwards into the brightly lit concave mirror, a long thin snake twisting round and round, upwards—like a snake charmer’s cobra. No flute here, only the hissing, snapping, crackling noise of the surgical cauterizer. There is no pain, but the smell is awful. The smell of burning flesh.

My flesh.

More hissing and crackling. More smoke rising up into the operatory’s mirrored light above me.

There was more vascularization than expected. The damn thing didn’t want to stop bleeding after the punch biopsy. That means it has it’s own blood supply, what ever it is. I have to wait a few days or a week to find out if it is just a garden variety dermoid cyst or a melanoma. It has features of both and yet doesn’t quite look like either.

The stupid little thing was right under my nose all along. Well, under and to the right, actually. I’ve had a Marilyn Monroe beauty-mark mole on my cheek since I was a kid. My beard hides it, so I never gave it any thought for years. Then two nights ago I was resting my face in my hands (exhausted, not crying) when I felt the lump.

What the fuck?

Off to the bathroom. A good light and a good mirror. Pulling my graying beard hairs aside I find my mole has transformed. No longer chocolate brown and flat, it’s angry red. Poufy like a party balloon. Bigger. Edges not quite regular, not quite irregular.

Ut-oh. This can’t be good.

First thing this morning the doctor studied it, “Well, this has to go,” he stated flatly after looking it over. “But we need to be smart about it.”

Smart, in this case, means knowing what it is youre going to cut off, before you cut it off. So he did a punch biopsy, cutting the edge off of whatever it is, removing a small three millimeter core of flesh, which, as I write this, is floating serenely in formaldehyde in a plastic sample jar on it’s way to the regional medical center’s lab. There it will be sliced impossibly thin, stained with various dyes and stared at under microscopes. A clinical police lineup.

Then we’ll know what it is. If it’s harmless, it still has to go, but can simply be cut off my face with only temporary damage to my beard. But if it’s… umm… you know… less than harmless, then my life will get more complicated than it already is.

But at least I’ll have a lot to write about. But for now, the waiting begins.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Colleen said...

Hoping for a good report.

3:55 PM  
Blogger Jonah said...

Here's hoping it's harmless!

6:46 PM  
Blogger Penny said...

Hoping that it's harmless. But I'm glad you are getting it taken care of either way.

8:10 PM  
Blogger Wendy Rose said...

IT.

Ugh.

I have an IT as well...ovarian.

Praying for your IT, my friend.

9:40 PM  

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