Thursday, June 28, 2007

Give him a hand...

All of a sudden it appeared.

I had a large round lump pop up on the inside wrist of my left hand.

When the dermatologist took a look at it on Tuesday, she said that I needed to go to a hand specialist sooner rather than later.

This statement unnerved me as I headed to my appointment yesterday morning. My mind was racing in so many directions..."What if this was something serious? Would I be able to continue hand-crafting my pottery?". Because I am left-handed, this was of particular concern to me.

The clinic was a good distance from my house and I found myself in new territory as I tried to follow the nurse's "not so accurate" directions. She had said, "Go through 3 traffic lights" when, in actuality, there were more than 8 lights to pass before coming to the clinic. Of course, this just added to my anxiety!

Once I arrived at what I took to be the building where I needed to go, I got in the elevator ready to head to the 7th floor. Unfortunately, this particular building only had four floors. Obviously, I was in the wrong place. : (

Relocating to the taller building across the street, I found an elevator that went to the seventh floor and made my way up!

Sitting in the waiting room, I was given a large stack of papers to fill out. There were two other ladies in the room with me and we were all commenting about the multiple sheets of detailed information that we had to fill out. One of the ladies commented that she was there because she could hardly move her hand, yet here they were making her write all of this information down and use her sore hand. Good point. (We even laughed about having a "patient revolt".....the receptionist wasn't really amused.)

When I finally got ushered into the exam room I hardly caught my breath before I was whisked into the x-ray room for pictures of my lump. I was pretty amazed as the images showed up on the computer screen in a matter of minutes....no more waiting for pictures to develop.

Back in the exam room, the doctor knocked on the door. This always makes me laugh when doctors do this in that I feel like saying, "I don't want any" or "I already gave at the office" or "Go away!". But, of course, I said "come in"...and he did.

As he took my hand in his, I was amazed at how he studied every nuance of it. He seemed transfixed on the movement of my hand and then focused on "the lump". He continued to study it without saying anything. After all, I thought, he is a "hand specialist" and I guess that this is what they do.

Finally, the diagnosis: a ganglion cyst. For those of you not familiar with this...it "is a tumor or swelling on top of a joint or the covering of a tendon (tissue that connects muscle to bone)." This benign lump was not painful and would most likely shrink and possibly grow periodically. I could either ignore it or have surgery to remove it if it becomes a problem for me. I chose to ignore it for now.

Back in my car (and passing back through the 8 or more lights to the highway!) , I breathed a sigh of relief and had a smile on my face as I headed home to get my hands back in my clay.... : )

5 comments:

Bert said...

Hey, good job taking care of yourself! I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say that you deserve a hand!

Grammie said...

...make sure that it is a left one, Bertsky...

Gattina said...

I am sure your doctor wanted to read your life line ! I have/had such a thing too, just under my thumb, sometimes I see it this morning not. Better to leave it alone !
Have you seen little Rosie ? My new kitten, we have her since two weeks now. It will be our last baby cat, we are not getting younger. If she lives 20 years as usually my cats do then I will be 83 !!

Grammie said...

Hi Gattina....I did see Rosie and commented on your blog about how cute she was!...makes me want to get a kitten... : )

Have a nice day!

Jana said...

Those cysts are comers and goers, sometimes they can be painful, but I would hope you don't seriously consider surgery. The surgeon could nick the nerve and leave you with numb spots, or worse with a useless left hand. Congrats on getting through the stress of driving to a new place with poor directions. Maybe you could try the map.com on the computer next time? How's Dave's burn?