Tuesday, June 1, 2010


Whoa… it’s been a crazy couple of weeks. Remember that awesome doctor experience I had, the phsycial I found to be just a little TOO entertaining (if not, let me see if I can remind you: “Blow blow blow!” … or scroll down two posts)? Well, a few days after that I got a call from the doctor, who told me they found a right paratracheal mass on my chest x-ray. At first simply thought “Ok, so what?” but the doctor must have noticed my reluctance to acknowledge what she was trying to tell me, so she eventually said something like this: “No, you don’t understand. If this mass is actually attached to your trachea, there is an 80% chance that this is malignant.”

Ok. Message received.

That night was the dress rehearsal for my local figure skating club’s spring ice show. I missed all of my jumps, and after the club was sure my music would play through on the master CD they had created, I quietly excused myself, pretty much missing all of my students skate. On the way out I asked a friend, “How do you tell the person you love the most that there is an 80% chance you have cancer?” It didn’t take her long to figure out that my question wasn’t rhetorical.

I called my regular doctor and set up an appointment, as the doctor who FOUND the paratracheal mass as just there to clear me for the job I’m applying for. She couldn’t schedule the CT for me. Now my doctor is a pretty cool guy (very gay friendly - I think even gay himself… if anyone wants a referral, ha! But the office is a little scary, and the décor is stuck in the 1970’s. Still, well worth it), and he spent over an hour with me walking me through all the possibilities (what doctor does that?!). He wasn’t sure he was worried once he saw the chest x-ray, but he also admitted that he wasn’t a radiologist, and suggested we proceed with the recommended CT.

After much worrying, and trying to keep a positive attitude, I scheduled a CT scan (which my great insurance won’t cover. But I figured 2500 dollars was worth it for the peace of mind of knowing).

I had my CT done at Saint Mark’s hospital. I arrived at 7 in the morning, and was the first one in the radiology waiting room. I don’t know if the hospital is very efficient, or if it was because I was the first one there, but they were very very quick at getting me in and out. Now, if you’ve never had the opportunity to be shot up with Iodine, I highly recommend it! As the iodine went through my body I got all warm and tingly – like taking a Tequila shot without the nasty taste – haha.

I’m pretty sure I was glowing that night, after all the radiation those dang machines emit. My doctor doesn’t work Mondays, and I had the CT on a Thursday, so they told me I would have to wait until Tuesday for my results.

Tuesday came and went, with nothing. I called them that night but only got an answering machine.

I called twice on Wedensday, and finally just after 5pm, I got a call from the doctor.

Turns out, I’m just weird. I have what the radiologist at St. Mark’s called a “normal variation.” Turns out my aorta instead of curving to the left, curves to the right and travels down the RIGHT side of my chest.

So feel free to breathe a collective sigh of relief for me. I should have no effects from such a backward heart construction =) . Of course, I’ll probably get some sort of tumor in a few years related to the CT radiation – haha.

Strangely, when I told the people who were as anxiously waiting my results, one, who has a gay brother, mentioned that he too, had this condition.

Which made me wonder if there has ever been a study done linking a right-axis heart to homosexuality. How strange that the organ associated with love would be backward in two homosexual men.

So how about it fellow gays – do any of you happen to know if you have a right-axis heart? Anyone know of a straight man that does? Just curious ;)


Scott said...

Wow. I'm so happy that you're okay!

Now you've got me wondering if my heart is backwards. :)

JonJon said...

Glad you are ok. I had a heart murmur when I was younger, but I don't think I do anymore.