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This morning I made the arduous journey up to Sunnybrook, the hospital I tend to run to when I need help. But this time I had an appointment. Yay!

My appointment was at 8:15 in the morning, a most ungodly hour. But having an appointment this early means I get to see my surgeon in a timely manner, instead of sitting around for several hours in the waiting room. My last appointment with him was in May. The secretaries know me, so I just need to wave and say “I’m here” then I can sit down. My doctor was walking past and just took me in, without referring to the official list.

How do I manage to get these “sweet” spots? I am polite. I have been with Dr Herschorn now for 20 years. I know he overbooks, there’s no arguing with that. Because of his speciality (he’s a urologist specialising in urinary tract reconstruction) he’s a very popular fellow. Reasons for why he tends to fall behind include him deciding that an ultrasound is necessary for him to make a decision, or he gets called in at the last moment to an emergency. Or he’s squeezing in as many patients in as possible so that they are not waiting close to a year to see him.

The secretaries have no control over him. Yelling at them achieves nothing, they report to Dr Herschorn and he calls the shots. So I know that getting forceful with the secretary is not going to work, and what can happen is that you lose the ability to get really good timeslots for appointments. So I am polite, quiet and am patient. My reward for being such a model patient is I get decent “service”.

I walked in, the secretary told me to go into an examination room – no point in waiting in the waiting area. 10 minutes later a medical student came a long to have the initial conversation with me. Then my doctor. For the most part I am okay, but he’s not happy with my having a UTI nearly every 2 weeks. And he’s not happy with “rosebud” (my stoma) – saying it looks constricted. So I am to return to Sunnybrook on October 29th for an ultrasound and a “minor” surgical procedure. Basically he’s going to cut into the stoma to make it wider. I suspect (though he hasn’t mentioned this) that I will have a little bag again with an indwelling foley, so my stoma has a chance to heal.

And on November 17th I am to go in for a cystoscopy. Basically, a scope is inserted into the bladder via my stoma (and for those of you with fully functional urethras, the scope is pushed up through your urethra .. and it isn’t small .. I usually need some mild sedation). Last year I had 2 tiny bladder stones. Dr Herschorn wants to check out to see if there are any more stones, and to check on the interior of the bladder … to see if there is any scar tissue that may need to be burned away.

Joy!

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