Sunday, May 29, 2011

Six Month Checkup - MRI Tuesday

Our last evening in Minneapolis was spent with our only opportunity to have a fur free dinner.  Since Rilley was at the University, we took the opportunity to take the girls to Olive Garden.  Of course, we chose a location near the VMC so that we could pick him up right after.

Tuesday morning came fast and furious.  The alarm got us up bright and early at 6:00am as we had to arrive at the University for 7:00.  To make the morning easier, we had packed our bags and loaded them into the Jeep the evening before.  So a quick shower and a speedy check out later we were on the road.

Once at the University, we took Rilley in and met with Dr. Pluhar.  She told us that Rilley's blood work from the day before came back perfect...well, almost.  It seems the plucky pooch's cholesterol is a wee bit high.  Well, I ask you...who doesn't have the odd bit of problem in the cholesterol department?  Hmmm????   In all seriousness though, it may have been a bit high and I'm sure Dr. Ewing will keep an eye on it, but it's nothing that we should be overly concerned about.  These results put us more at ease that his last set in February may very well have been atypical due to his emotional state.  We had, after all, pulled into town at 11pm and left him at the Veterinary Medical Center and he had stayed there the entire time.  This most likely stressed him out and cause the results at the time to be out of whack.

At around 8:00am, the anaesthesiologist came out to collect Rilley and prep him for his MRI.  The scan was scheduled to run for an hour beginning at 8:30.  Followed by another hour in recovery.  All went as planned until it was time to take Rilley out of the MRI.  Before they could lift him from the table, Rilley pulled a repeat of the last time.  He managed to wake, partially cough out the intubation tube and start chewing on it.  Since this wasn't the time for him to be without the breathing tube, the anaesthesiologist had to put him under again.

While we were waiting for him to come out of recovery, Dr. Pluhar came out to go over the MRI.  She called up Rilley's three month MRI next to the new scan.  If you remember back to February, his MRI was clear of tumour cells.  Here we were, looking at the newest images and some words that Dr. Ohlfest had said the previous day were ringing in our ears.

"Any recurrence of Rilley's type of tumour usually appears between the third and sixth month."

We must say, those words were in our minds all night.  However in the end, we had nothing to fear as the current MRI shows that Rilley is still tumour free!!!!
6 month MRI:  Clear of any tumour cells!!!!
Ok, so now we have the nerve wracking part behind us...what about Rilley?  Well, his extra dose of anaesthesia has him still sleeping soundly, but they were having trouble raising his core body temperature.  The anaesthesiologist brought him out to us along with a special heating blanket called, appropriately enough, the Hot Dog warming pad.  So here we sat waiting for Rilley to warm and wake!
Poor sleepy head.  Hey!  Keep that tongue in your mouth!
Since we now had some time to kill, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to get a group shot of the girls with the person who performed the life saving surgery on their best friend six long months ago.
Katherine, Elizabeth, Sara and a still sleeping Rilley
with Dr. Pluhar (sorry Dr. Pluhar, I should've taken
another one, but I didn't notice your eyes were closed!)
Once Rilley's body temperature had returned to normal and he had woken up a bit we packed up and hit the road.  The time was now 1:15pm, we were leaving quite a few hours later than we had hoped to get away.  Unfortunately we didn't have the luxury of having a stop over on our way home as I had to work Wednesday morning.  The most precarious part of the drive was travelling through Michigan in the dead of night.  For some reason, they have a high number of deer/car collisions and I lost count at six dead deer along the side of the interstate.  I also spot at least one deer standing in the ditch in that state and another two standing side by side along highway 402 between Sarnia and London.  Finally, 16 hours later, we pulled into the driveway at 5:15 in the morning.  We unpacked the Jeep and I climbed turned right around and drove into work.  By the time I went to bed Wednesday evening, I had a full blown migraine and retired around 7pm...37 hours since I got up on Tuesday morning.

All in all, the trip with it's long drives, tornadoes and sleep deprivation was worth it as our beloved Rilley is home safe and with a clean bill of health.

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