Fortunately the hospital keeps up the pace. Instead of ‘sometime in the next two weeks’, I had the scans today already and hopefully I’ll get all results (scans, blood, biopsy) on Thursday. My good friend will come with me.

From six hours before the PET/CT scans I was not allowed to eat or drink anything or to do any sports. The latter is – as you know- no problem for me at all, but alas, it also includes walking and cycling. So farewell to my little plan to walk to the hospital on this beautiful sunny day. I couldn’t go by car either as I will get an injection with medication that could influence my driving ability. High time to put into operation a suggestion from my brother: set up an ‘Ingebee’ whatsapp group of neighbours who are if need be willing to step in when I need transport for shopping etc. This was organized in no time! Thank God for helpful neighbours and colleagues!

A dear neighbour took me – stripped of my ring and earrings – to the hospital for the first scan: the MRI. I’m not very fond of small enclosed spaces; one has to lie down in a narrow tunnel. I also did not particularly look forward either to the racket for which this device is notorious. It wasn’t too bad after all, thanks to Radio4 which was played via earphones on my request. One of the classical music pieces even happened to have the same beat as the hard noises of the MRI machine. I had to stifle a little grin as I realized in time that I was supposed not to move for 20 minutes.

From magnetic radiation (MRI: Magnetic Resonance Imaging) to radioactive radiation (PET-scan: Positron Emission Tomography): with an interval of 1,5 hours in-between, during which I had to drink 1 liter of water. The PET-scan starts with three quarters of an hour lying motionless after the radioactive solution has been injected (which is a challenge after just having drunk a liter of water). Then into the scanner. Fortunately, this machine produces less noise. Every four minutes the lying board is moved forward a little bit through the (fortunately shorter) tunnel of this machine. The whole scan takes three quarters of an hour, I hardly dared to breathe, hoping that the images will be clear enough to spot possible metastases or (much to be preferred) to exclude them. And finally, in the same machine the X-rays of the CT-scan.

When the entire session had ended, I was strongly advised not to come near small children and pregnant women within the next 4 hours. “Have you got another question”? “Yes”, one: “What about kittens”? “No, that’s alright”. Relieved and tired I walked outside where my brother was waiting for me to take me home (to my 2 kittens) and treat me to a lovely meal.