Do you remember . . .

. . . life before social media? I was surprised recently to get a “reminder” from Facebook that showed that I had been using it for ten years! If you had asked me I would probably have said ‘about five years’ although if I thought about it I would have realised it was longer, but ten years!!! Continue reading “Do you remember . . .”

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Pink teeshirts are best

(although luminous yellow are pretty good as well)

It was three in the morning and I was standing on the corner of a street in a hi-viz jacket with a cat rubbing itself against my legs. Further down the road I could just see Liz’s flashing bunny ears and in the distance I could see a snake of twinkling lights coming towards us. As they got closer I could see that they were all wearing pink tee-shirts. When they reached me I directed them round the corner and onward. It was the annual Midnight Walk for the Florence Nightingale Hospice. Most were walking steadily and chatting away although a couple of times someone not in a pink teeshirt weaved their way along the road and staggered off into the distance. Continue reading “Pink teeshirts are best”

Upping the ante (2) – 150 days to go

At the end of March (Upping the ante) I told you that my daughter-in-law Toni and her friend and running companion Carol have made a rash decision – they have entered the Great South Run to raise money for Cancer Research UK. This is a 10 mile unencumbered run when they are used to 10 kilometre runs which have obstacles to allow them to take a breather (she’ll probably tell me off for suggesting that that is what they are for). Continue reading “Upping the ante (2) – 150 days to go”

Is there a trend?

Blood Tests This month I had oncology and haematology appointments only a week apart so I thought it silly to go for two separate blood tests.  Off I went to the surgery with two blood test forms and found that the phlebotomist also had one form (from my GP) so she had the challenge of seeing how they differed and whether she could combine them and avoid taking too many gallons of my red stuff. After all, they all wanted a FBC, LFT and U&E (that’s a Full Blood Count, Liver Function Test and Urea and Electrolytes). In  addition Oncology, not surprisingly, wanted a PSA figure (I would be worried if they hadn’t asked for that)  and my GP wanted a couple of other things. Continue reading “Is there a trend?”

Genesis of a book

When I gave a talk about Antarctica to my granddaughter’s class (I survived Class 5) I was asked about how I had written “Furthest South“. I briefly (it was getting near lunchtime) explained the process of writing, revising, improving and proof reading. I could have said more had I had the time, and the time to think about it. So with a bit of thought I have managed to turn a two sentence reply into this 2,500 word essay. Now my blogs  are usually closer to 700 words so this is going to be rather longer than normal! Continue reading “Genesis of a book”

Better diagnosis?

In Faster diagnosis? I mentioned developments in MRI technology (which could also lead to better diagnosis). Scientists at Dundee University have been working on developments in ultrasound – a technique called shear wave elastography. This relies on the fact that cancerous tissue is stiffer than non-cancerous tissue. This can be detected on an ultrasound scan and so cancerous tissue can be pinpointed more accurately. The information obtained allows a better diagnosis which in turn leads to better treatment. In addition it should be cheaper than an MRI scan and so be more widely available. Continue reading “Better diagnosis?”