Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Packing my bags

I called Landon’s Dr. to get an appointment for his 2 year well child visit. I have every Friday off and the closest Friday to his 2nd birthday is…his birthday. So I scheduled it for that day and the receptionist/appointment booker lady basically called me mean. And told me he would remember his 2 year old visit. And told me that we had to get him some really big presents to make up for it. And I told her to mind her own beeswax and that if I needed her parenting advice then I would ask for it and also, would she like to pay me my normal wages to come in on a day I don’t have off, if she thinks it’s so terrible that I bring him in on his birthday. Except I didn’t. I possibly mumbled something about his party being the next day and that he wouldn’t know the difference.


A couple weeks ago I took Ivan in to the vet for his annual cortisone shot. He’s allergic to mosquitoes we believe, and basically we wait until his ears are all red and bleedy and gross and his nose swells up and get him a cortisone shot and it all goes down and he’s happy until the next year when the mosquitoes come back. He also gets his annual shots when this happens and I tried to combine this appointment with Alexander’s well cat visit, but when I went to gather the cats, the yard guys were making as much noise as humanly possible and only Ivan fell for the old tuna trick.

Well, as it turns out one of his lymph nodes is swollen in one of his hind legs. The Dr. aspirated it and didn’t see anything that indicated cancer or lymphoma saying that not only are the typical cells not present in the sample she took, but also that normally a cat with lymphoma has all his lymph nodes swollen, not just one. But she gave him an antibiotic shot and sent us packing with a huge vet bill. Thank God Alexander was hiding, because if I’d had them both there and had to pay for his shots too, I’m not sure we would have made it out of there without having to wash dishes or something. She said to call in 3 weeks or so and check back in about his lymph node.

Well, she called to check on him. His lymph node is still swollen. She said she has to recommend a biopsy. And I felt like a jackass, but I asked “how much money are we talking here?” She added the histopath and the anesthesia and came up with about $300. “And what happens if it comes back as cancer? Cat Chemotherapy?” Yeah, pretty much.

And here’s where I then have to choose between money and cat chemotherapy.

Cat chemotherapy will probably only actually extend his life a year. A sick year. A year of 2 daily pills and a shot every 3 weeks. Basically, a year of hell. And since I suck at remembering to administer pills probably less than a year. On a cat that seemingly is pretty durn healthy at the moment. I didn’t even ask how much that was going to cost me. She did say it was pretty reasonably priced. This vet also told me that the shot antibiotic I had opted for over the pills was about the same price and very reasonable ($90 is NOT reasonable for a cat antibiotic.)

Bottomline, I’m not going to go for cat chemotherapy – I’d rather watch him live happily as he is doing now, and when/if I see a decline in his health we’ll reevaluate the situation. She said if I wasn’t going to do the treatment there really no reason to biopsy. Honestly, I think that it was probably inflamed due to an infection from the mosquito bites and once it’s all good and healed he’ll be fine. Plus, he’s an outside cat, and he’s 6 years old and he’s already outlived a lot of his siblings.

The dog next door is still there, but they did get his fur cut. So yea for the system. Except, he's still alone 99.9% of the time and I still feel bad for him.
Have you seen the commercial where they ask President Bush if he ate dinner with his family growing up and claim it keeps kids from doing drugs and committing crimes? He says he did, and then Barbara chimes in about it...does no one remember his convictions for cocaine. Is he really the best spokesman for that spot?


nonsoccermom said...

Don't feel bad. I did that to my kid on his birthday too. He lived to tell the tale and I don't think he'll need therapy. Not about that, anyway. :)

I agree wholeheartedly about the kitty chemo. It just seems pointless. I love our pets, but I just can't see shelling out thousands upon thousands of dollars to extend their lives by a year.

Anonymous said...

Hey Kristine, I guess I will have to become one with the night. I just get annoyed by the ladies in the neighborhood who all have kids (the youngest of which is 2 1/2) who keep asking "Is he sleeping through the night?"

"No, he still gets up about once in the night. Thanks for asking and reminding me that you are sleeping more than 3 hours at a time!!!"


The Modernish Father said...

Actually, nonsoccermom takes great delight in scheduling our children's vaccinations for their birthdays. She was seriously bummed when she discovered that there was no round on the sixth birthday.

Aunt Becky said...

That receptionist should be kicked.

Mama said...

I totally thought the cats were gone! Glad to The Great & Terrible kitties are still hanging around. I love my baby, but I would not pay for cat chemo either.