A column in todays WSJ is suggesting that discussing ones setbacks in life may well be good for you as you frequently enough find others in similar situations with whom you can discuss your problems and possibly discover solutions.
I have been diagnosed with Prostate cancer. This is not as bad as it sounds at the topmost level as it was caught at an early stage and treatment is simple and quick. That is for certain definitions of the word “simple”. Preparation includes inserting 4 short pieces of gold wire into the prostate so the targeting x-ray can actually see where the prostate is. The staff is provided with directions from the urologist as to where the cancer is located with reference to the wire locations. X-radiation therapy is applied using the very latest Allaudium Q-39 planetary nebulizer, an example of which in action can be seen here. All that was missing was the earth-shattering ka-boom.
The example shown has the machine working on the patients neck (Thyroid?) and emitting a red beam. In my case the patient was reversed and the machine was working on my crotch. In operation it's like having a 1-ton Labrador retriever carefully sniffing you so as to carefully commit to its memory all your pertinent statistics. No there is no red beam although there is a red laser cross hair roughly centered on the area of interest. The big head on the machine is the X-ray generator.
The many and varied angles it shoots from enables a session to hit the targeted spot from lots of different angles at one sitting and reduces the treatment time from 45 days to 5. I have now completed 5 treatments of 30 minutes each so by now all the bad stuff has presumably been shuffled off the mortal coil. That part was easy and painless although the side effects began to show up after treatment 3.
Most of my readers should be familiar with the 4 rules of gun safety, of which #4 is “Be sure of your target and what's beyond.” In this case, what's beyond is my intestines. Seems the cancer requires a fairly forceful push but my intestines don't take as much persuading. As a result I'm now on probiotics to try and restore my digestive functions. It also seems my lower intestine was weakened to the point that whereas in the past I'd get a polite warning about visiting the loo followed by a somewhat stronger one. Not any more. I get one warning and that's NOT advisory. It says I'd better be within 10 yards of the facilities OR ELSE! Even worse, no one has been willing to hazard a guess as to exactly how long this should be expected to drag on. Best guess so far is about 2 weeks.
There is a list of dietary restrictions that goes with this process that basically boils down to “Anything you eat will come back to haunt you in about 4 hours so remember the 10 yard rule. Attempting to follow this has lost me about 10 lbs in the last week. So the cancer is gone in 5 easy treatments and now all I have to do is nothing until my guts recover from the collateral damage. Other restrictions include No Bicycles which I'm finding out has to do with introducing vibratory stimulus to the lower intestine area. When you apply vibration to something thick and slow moving, it becomes thin and fast moving. Riding a motorcycle is less stressful, but has the same end result. Walking around also introduces vibration and the dog is missing her morning walks.
The probiotics are a pricey set of pills to be taken for about 2 weeks. One of my friends suggested that knowing what the effect on ones gut flora is about to be, perhaps the treatment center should work in a step involving refining a stool sample from the patient before the procedure and saving the refined flora in the fridge until after completion at which time it could be replaced in one or two passes to give the patient back 100% of his original biota. I ran this by the folks at the treatment facility who had mixed reactions to the idea although they all agreed that this might be a good application for the fecal transplant technology.
Renew Life brand Digest Smart eliminates gas way better than Beano and Garden Life brand Raw Probiotics (refrigerated) for men 51 and older is recommended for us older farts.
Mad Science department:
I also suggested a money saving method of doing this which was met with somewhat less enthusiasm. One visits the Salvation Army store and picks up a blender and a coffee maker. Rub them through your dish washer until your sterilization standards are met. Place stool sample and about 3 cups of distilled water in the blender, and reduce the mixture to brown liquid. Set up the coffee maker with the filter holder over the carafe, and pour the liquid through a coffee filter. This should yield a couple of cups of what the old Chinese physicians referred to as "yellow soup". Repeat the filtering process until all solid material has been removed. Use an eyedropper to load up some gelatin capsules with the soup and put them into secondary capsules, and refrigerate. Post treatment, take 2 in the evening before bed time for about 2 weeks. That should do it. DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor. Do this at your own risk. Not responsible for anything. There are outfits that do this sort of thing and if you find one in your neighborhood, they might be able to help you out. It certainly adds a level of professionalism to the process though.