We met with Dr. Strome again on January 24th, and that day, we also went through the pre-op physical at University Medical Center. After another long day in Baltimore (this one broken up with a yummy field trip to the Cheesecake Factory overlooking the Inner Harbor!), we came home and began what was our last week of normalcy before the surgery and subsequent recovery.
On Friday, I was to call the hospital to get our check-in time for the following Monday. It was just before this that I received the call from Dr. Wright. The surgery was postponed. If everything went as planned, he would be put on some medication, and the surgery would be rescheduled for Friday, February 11th and the embolization would be the day before.
An endocrinologist had reviewed Leigh’s lab work and was not happy with the results that he saw. The carotid body (paraganglioma) tumors (the ones in his neck) have the potential for secreting enzymes that will raise the blood pressure. This, when combined with the stress on the body caused by the surgery, can cause a hypertensive situation, or basically, his blood pressure could skyrocket, putting him in even more danger than the surgery itself. So, know we’d have to go back for more lab work. I drove to Baltimore to pick up the orders and supplies that afternoon, and Leigh went back the following Monday to have the labs repeated.
On Thursday, February 3rd, I received a call from Dr. Strome and Dr. Wright. The levels they were testing for in his lab work were there and rising, and Dr. Strome did not feel comfortable going forward with this surgery. He had contacted the “world expert” in this condition, who luckily was at NIH (National Institutes of Health) in Bethesda, Maryland.
Now, the second surgery was postponed as well.