Tuesday, June 08, 2010

3 months

mdm S is 55 years & i'd say has more than her fair share of life's travails.

6 years ago, she had a kidney removed because it wasn't functioning. could be a result of hypertension, which she has had for several years.

last year, she developed a tumour in her remaining kidney. attempts were made to remove the tumour while preserving the rest of the kidney but that failed. on top of that, she bled a day after surgery & had to go for an emergency exploration to remove the bleeding kidney, ie. she underwent 2 surgeries in as many days. she survived & because both kidneys had been removed, is now dependent on haemodialysis 3 times a week.

today she came back, with yet another tumour - this time in one of her lungs. it could be a recurrence (called a secondary) from the previous kidney tumour. again she had major surgery - had her chest opened to remove the lump.

the surgery was fraught with difficulties from the word "go."  the pre-op preparation took almost 2 hours, the lung bled throughout, her blood pressure & oxygen saturation dropped. it was most unfortunate that, because the tumour was adherent to a major blood vessel, it couldn't be resected completely without damaging the blood vessel.

3 months.

no, that's not how much time she has - that's the extent i think my life has shortened today.

mdm S came out of surgery after 5 hours, very much alive. so perhaps, 3 months is a small price to pay.


reanaclaire said...

I cannot imagine.. oh doc, it is so sad when i hear all this..
Madam S, whoever she is, May God grant her strength emotionally, physically and spiritually...

wenn said...

hope she is still strong..btw, my husband is a business person and he used to buy stuff in bulk from Giant, Tesco, Macro n Jusco..that explains how.

doc said...


thank you for your kind wishes. it's always sad when people suffer, though of no fault of their own.

hope she will spend her remaining time in the company & with support of her beloved family.

doc said...


she is recovering well in the ICU.

missyc said...

It's sad to hear of Mdm S. Your line of work is stressing the heart sometimes dont you think?

Today my aunt who is fighting a losing battle to the bigC too bravely comforted me instead tells not to cry, she said In Life, we are born to Live & in the end we all have to Die. Its not death that is fearful. Its helpless feeling, seeing her anorexic body wrecked in pain, doctors trying so many ways to find veins to 'puncture' for blood taking/transfusions & injections while she who is so ill with ... months left have no say. What annoys me is hearing unsympathetic doctors asking her "ARE you Angry?" "ARE you Depressed?" "Do you want to go HOME? when she has been pining to go Home..

I think palliative care here is in dire straits, lack of empathy, the doctors looks washout, in a hurry, one said to me not enough manpower maybe no one wants to deal with the dying.

iml said...

Mdm S is a strong and determine lady. May the angels watch over her.

doc said...


the fact that your aunt is admitted to hospital places responsibility on the doctors to treat her in the best way they can, so it's not accurate to state that she has no say. i agree that the palliative care is far from satisfactory in govt hosps & almost non-existent in private ones - choosing to face dying people is not everyone's cup of tea.

my line of work is BAD for the heart but seriously, i can't imagine doing anything else!

doc said...



JoMel said...

this brings back such bad memories for me!

3 months was all he had from the word "go".


doc said...

oh, dear Jo!

we are on a different context here, but never mind, here's a HUG for you!


Loshini said...

Mdm s is a fighter, spending quality time with her loved ones is important right now, i guess..

And, you knew you'd face this when you stepped into the profession, so hang in there, doc

doc said...


mdm S is blessed in that her family support is strong.

i'd like to think that i'm similarly blessed in that i've been given a responsibility to heal, despite the consequences.