The last time I had one, I was under the whole time and then woke up with this bloated neck as the surgeon told me how difficult it was to get underneath my chest wall. He was old. Probably shouldn't be handling sharp objects.
This time it went much smoother. I was awake. They gave me some Verced but to anyone who's had too much fun in college, Verced is a joke unless given in high quantities. I was also not in a surgery room but laying right underneath a CT Scanner. They then gave me a local anesthetic, which did work. Then they took this needle with a tube in it and went right into the center of my chest. I watched them go in and fish around on the TV monitor. The "fellow" (which is an MD Anderson term for a really smart student, usually the smartest student in his or her home country which is rarely the US because we apparently don't make smart people anymore) then sent this wire through the tube to scrape a couple of samples. He did this a few times. But then a heard this sound and this Professor guy comes in, yells at the Fellow and does a few scrape jobs himself. The actual time under took about an hour.
They told me I would have a very small scar. That makes four scars of varying lengths on my midsection. And we're not done yet. Ladies, watch out.
That's pretty much it for the tests. I'm on to actually getting treatment next week. My wife will be coming to town. I might teach her to do this so she can fill in for me when I'm too whacked out to make any sense. You all have to promise to be nice to her.
Enclosed is a picture of what I would look like if I didn't have scars and didn't have nipple hair and back hair (which, thankfully will be gone with chemo next week) but did have bigger muscles and well-coifed hair. It also reflects my steely determination.