Met with Dr. Sanders, the pulmonologist, who saw me way back when we thought my cough might be a mycobacterium avium intercellular infection and who figured out from a CAT scan of the chest that it wasn’t, then sending me to Dr. Sulica, the ENT, who finally diagnosed the carcinoma.
(I know, you can’t tell the players without a scorecard. I’ve been extremely impressed with the intelligence and energy of the physicians I’ve been seeing in New York; I got some excellent care in L.A., especially from my oncologist, Dr. Emmanuelides, but overall the docs I saw were a little bit too laid-back and not as decision-theory oriented as I would have liked; when Dr. Weiss told me that he wasn’t completely reassured by my first, negative stress test because that test is only 80-85% sensitive, I knew I was playing in a different league. It would be wrong to notice the high prevalence of (((a particular characteristic))) among the people treating me in New York, so I won’t mention that as a possible explanation.)
I brought him up to date; apparently my Columbia Presbyterian records (from my nephrologist and the radiocardiology folks) aren’t transparent to the Weill Cornell system. I’m hoping that won’t be a problem for the transplant team at NYU Langone. He thinks the cough will resolve once the tumor has been burned out. When I explained the difficulty of finding a cardiologist to do a cardiac catheterization without putting me on dialysis, he looked at the PET results and said “Are you considering a bypass? This looks as if it could be managed medically rather than surgically, but you’re not currently on any of those drugs.” He gave me the name of an interventional cardiologist, Dr. Dimitry Feldman. I’m going to pass that suggestion along to Dr. Weiss. If it’s right, that would be extremely good news under the circumstances.