Out, Out, Damn Spot!

Drugs to the Rescue

I had to go in to have a fairly big mole removed today.  It was my first time ever having a mole removed and I have been dreading it.  In fact, when I had my initial dermatology screening and the doctor said the mole had to go, I was telling her how big a baby I am about getting numbing shots and stitches.  The last time I had to have stitches, my whole body started to go numb, beginning at my toes and working its way up towards my heart.  I was convinced that if it reached my heart, I was going to have a heart attack.  Luckily the doctor had finished the stitching right before that happened.

Well, after telling my current doctor this, she quickly prescribed some Valium for me and also suggested a tube of topical numbing creme to put on the area about a half hour before I showed up today for the surgery.

I was REALLY hoping that I would be totally out of it by the time I reached the doctor’s office but I wasn’t.  The old adrenalin was pumping, let me tell you.  The Commander drove me over there but I walked in on my own steam (as opposed to him having to carry me in, which is what I had really hoped for).  I no sooner sat down in the waiting room when they called me into the back for the procedure.

“How are we doing? the nurse asked brightly.

“Horrible, if you want to know the truth,” I answered.  “I took the Valium she prescribed but it hasn’t even affected me.”

“Well, it will most likely kick in after you leave here,” she laughed.  “You’re too tense right now. But don’t worry.  I think you will be pleasantly surprised.”

The doctor walked in.  “I understand you are still a little apprehensive,” she said.

“I think you should have prescribed elephant tranquilizer for me,” I informed her.

She laughed.  “Well, I brought my full bag of tricks.  I’m going to set up my iPod and play some classical music for you, if that is ok.  Do you like classical music?”

“Uh-huh,” I mumbled.  I also like polkas, I thought, but that’s probably not the right paced music for surgery.

“I’m also going to use a cold, numbing spray on the site, even though you already used the numbing creme.  That should really ensure that you don’t feel anything,” the doctor continued.

“Would you like a wet washcloth for your forehead?” asked the nurse.

“No, I’m good,” I replied.  “I usually prefer to clutch a pillow or my teddy bear, but I’ll just lay here.”

The spraying commenced, followed by periods of something.  I couldn’t feel it but I figured something was happening as there would be some spraying, then movement and the doctor doing something, then more spraying. After about 6-7 minutes of this, the doctor informed me that she was now going to drape the area so she could start the removal of the mole.

“You’re kidding,” I squeaked.  “I was kind of hoping you were all done.”

“Oh, the worst is behind you.  You aren’t going to feel anything now,” she chuckled.  “I promise that this will be over before you know it.”

I concentrated on the music and started choreographing ballet moves to the different tunes. Occasionally I’d feel a tug here and a tug there and I hoped that meant she was putting in stitches.  When I’d run out of ballet ideas, I’d zero in on that big frosty glass of Diet Pepsi that I was going to drink when I got out of there.

“We’re done,” the doctor announced.  “All I have to do now is put the bandaging on and you can go.  You’ve done great!”

“That’s because I had a great doctor, a great nurse, and excellent music,” I said.

The Commander came into the room to help me out and we hightailed it out of there.  By the time we made it home and I got out of the car, true to the nurse’s prediction, I was weaving like a drunken sailor.

Uh, what did I come in here for?
Don’t I normally wear glasses?
Do I really care?  Where’s the TV remote?

All’s well that ends well.  The mole is off and will be soon on its way to the lab to be checked.  Let’s pray that it is benign.

And if you haven’t had a baseline check yet with a dermatologist, let me encourage you to do so, especially if you are in your middle years of life.  If they find something that needs to be removed, I HIGHLY recommend Valium before your appointment.

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