The hold music blandly seeps into my brain as the monotonous repetition makes me lose track of the time spent on hold. It's been over 10 minutes by my phone's count. And this is the second time I've called. The first time I got tired of waiting at 15 minutes and hung up. Wait a second. What am I doing on hold? I have a long white coat now. I hang up, redial and listen to the automated now familiar menu electronically read through my phone into my car speakers. "If you are a physician, please press 1." I press 1. In less than 5 seconds a courteous individual cheerfully answers the phone. "Hello, this is Dr. Isaac and I'd like to check if a patient's abdominal CT scan have been officially read by the radiologist yet? Name and DOB are....Yes? Thank you, sir. Have a good weekend."
I fight rush hour traffic to make it to the imaging center to get a copy of the CT report. MY CT report. I've looked at the images myself and I can't see anything that jumps out at me. No renal growths. No GI growths. On the bones I see my abnormal spine but no sign of metastases. But I'm not as good at reading CTs as I am MRIs of the spine. I especially am not good at picking up enlarged lymph nodes. There's a reason radiologists make the big bucks. So I want to know the official read. NOW. It's Friday afternoon and I don't want to wait the weekend to know if there is some solid tumor I somehow missed. I breathe a deep sigh of relief as I quickly scan the results. IMPRESSION: benign abdominal CT.
Ruling out a renal adenocarcinoma is a big deal as it could present exactly like the way I am presenting. And it's a nasty malignancy, not that there's really any good cancer.