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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Last Lab Tests-Take Two

This blog will be posted some time after it was written due to an outside directive to not talk about my living donor experience until after I have donated.  If you are reading this, it is because I have completed the donation process.
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February 28, 2011

I arrived at the Riverbend Calgary Lab Services this morning at 7:06AM with my bright orange jug of  fun.  I was surprised that the lab, having only being open for 6 minutes, had already issued 11 "numbers" for those who didn't have appointments or couldn't make appointments.  I took number 12 and sat down.  Not only did I like that my jug of fun (badly camouflaged by a cheap white plastic bag) had to stay with me, but that two other people arrived during my wait and also got to sit with their jugs at their feet.  I had no idea that the test would be performed at that level of frequency. Part of me wanted to make eye contact with the others ("Hey! Club Jug lady! I know what you did over YOUR weekend...how was it for you?") and it seemed as though they did too. But a larger part of all of us must have remembered what was in the jugs and that its better to just stare blankly at the floor, somewhere to the left of where our jugs sit. Awkward.

Eventually my number was called and I thankfully got to hand over my jug for good. The lab lady (who HAD to be the same one Charlie spoke so fondly of) took my two requisition forms and verified I was who I claimed and I returned to my seat to wait. She called me back a couple of times.  Once to verify who one of the requesting doctors was (because Dr N didn't seem to exist in their system).  They seemed to resolve that one on their own (more because I shrugged at where her office might be and said Foothills?").

The second trip back up to the counter was more perplexing.  One of the 6 blood tests I needed to have completed could not be done at that lab. It actually couldn't be done at any lab outside of one of the three hospitals. You also had to fast for it (which I would have been fine for as I hadn't had anything to eat or drink). So why did the Living Donor Program not know this when they said I could take the added blood tests to any lab? Its not a standard test but it is a common test if one of the initial tests comes back with a higher than normal C reactive protein result. Maybe a chart for reception/those making appointments to just double check fasting vs. non fasting, regular lab vs not regular, appointment vs. no appointment test status. It just really surprised me.

So now I have to pick a day (sooner rather than later) to make a special trip to either Rockyview or Foothills at 7AM to beat the rush, fast (as in no eating of drinking for 12 hours) and get this appointment over and done with.  Part of me is wondering if the other tests I did will have eliminated the need for this test by then or not but as that was not an option presented to me, then I will forget about that (the tests were all different but many of them are used to test for possible auto immune issues or infection and as a result I would assume the results might overlap a bit). I'm leaning towards Foothills as it means they might get the results at the Living Donor Program faster that way and there is less room for the information getting "lost" if I am getting things done in the same building. I do feel bad about being late for work again this week.  I know my employer has been great about everything but part of that I think is because its been pretty well organized and nicely spread out. My boss said "cool" when I emailed him about this second trip so I am not overly concerned except for the simple loss of time to get stuff done in this week.  Oh well.

I still have yet to hear from the blood pressure clinic who should be calling soon to set up a time for me to pick up my other 24 hour test-the blood pressure monitor. More on that to come.

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