TATTOO!Well, I did it. :D I went and I got my ‘Night Fury' tattoo and you'll have to pardon me for saying so, but it's fucking badass. Much thanks and love to Jibo at Diamond Tattoo in Renton, WA.As I said back in [this post], the movie ‘How To Train Your Dragon’ has a lot of sentimental value for me. My nephew, Jack, and I watched it a lot while I was recovering from various cancer surgeries and also during chemo & radiation.When I found out that I had to have all my teeth taken out as a result of said treatments, well… this tattoo seemed like the perfect way to commemorate that kind of occasion.Why commemorate it? Because I’m not going to be toothless forever. Just like Toothless wasn’t actually toothless. He was a badass dragon, feared, and he never gave up relearning how to fly with a little help from his friends.I have awesometastic friends and I’m not giving up on teeth or anything else. So, yes. Commemorate. Remember. Grow. Love. Learn.Night Fury.
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[My GiveForward donation page is [here] for anyone still interested. Pass it along if you don’t mind?]

TATTOO!

Well, I did it. :D I went and I got my ‘Night Fury' tattoo and you'll have to pardon me for saying so, but it's fucking badass. Much thanks and love to Jibo at Diamond Tattoo in Renton, WA.

As I said back in [this post], the movie ‘How To Train Your Dragon’ has a lot of sentimental value for me. My nephew, Jack, and I watched it a lot while I was recovering from various cancer surgeries and also during chemo & radiation.

When I found out that I had to have all my teeth taken out as a result of said treatments, well… this tattoo seemed like the perfect way to commemorate that kind of occasion.

Why commemorate it? Because I’m not going to be toothless forever. Just like Toothless wasn’t actually toothless. He was a badass dragon, feared, and he never gave up relearning how to fly with a little help from his friends.

I have awesometastic friends and I’m not giving up on teeth or anything else. So, yes. Commemorate. Remember. Grow. Love. Learn.

Night Fury.

—-

[My GiveForward donation page is [here] for anyone still interested. Pass it along if you don’t mind?]

The SCCA finally sent over my medical records — about a month after  they were supposed to send them to my new oncologist. Yet another reason  I feel secure in my choice to switch. I read over some of her  notes and I like how she says, “Spent XX number of minutes with the  patient, most of which was counseling… etc.” UH, this woman never  spent 40 minutes with me. If she did, I wasn’t there. Usually, she sent  someone else in to talk to me first to see how I was doing and to see  why I was seeing her that day? Yeah, THAT might have been included in  her time. She even did that the day I went to get rid of her and when I  was like, “Oh, is Dr Chow with another patient?” they said, “No, she’s  in the other room”. SHE WAS JUST SITTING THERE. Why not come see a  patient if you’re just sitting there?!UGH.Anyway, I’m  done with her now, so I’m golden. But I also couldn’t help looking at  the x-rays they sent and one of them, dated March 12, 2009, really  jumped out at me. This is at the height of my pain, when I couldn’t find  anyone to help me, and I went to Valley. They took an x-ray, but  couldn’t do anything. Yet? You can see the mass on my tongue. There it  is, and in case you can’t see it, I’ve pointed it out for you. When I finally had my surgery, it ended up being 3.5 cm big.

The SCCA finally sent over my medical records — about a month after they were supposed to send them to my new oncologist. Yet another reason I feel secure in my choice to switch.

I read over some of her notes and I like how she says, “Spent XX number of minutes with the patient, most of which was counseling… etc.” UH, this woman never spent 40 minutes with me. If she did, I wasn’t there. Usually, she sent someone else in to talk to me first to see how I was doing and to see why I was seeing her that day? Yeah, THAT might have been included in her time. She even did that the day I went to get rid of her and when I was like, “Oh, is Dr Chow with another patient?” they said, “No, she’s in the other room”. SHE WAS JUST SITTING THERE. Why not come see a patient if you’re just sitting there?!

UGH.

Anyway, I’m done with her now, so I’m golden. But I also couldn’t help looking at the x-rays they sent and one of them, dated March 12, 2009, really jumped out at me. This is at the height of my pain, when I couldn’t find anyone to help me, and I went to Valley. They took an x-ray, but couldn’t do anything. Yet? You can see the mass on my tongue. There it is, and in case you can’t see it, I’ve pointed it out for you.

When I finally had my surgery, it ended up being 3.5 cm big.

A new mess for a new day.

When most people think of implants, they thing of boobs, they don’t think of teeth.

HOWEVER.

On Friday, the 26th, I was told in no uncertain terms that my mouth cannot hold a lower denture. In fact, most people can’t. It’s a small space, it erodes the soft tissue and leads to the destruction of the jawbone.

In radiated people, me, this is called OSTEORADIONECROSIS. Bone death due to radiation.

The only solution? Implants.

It’s a long and scary process and what it entails is this:

1) EXTRACTION: They’ll remove the teeth I have now.

2) HEALING: Because of the radiation, healing will take about 4-5 months, but the hyperbarics I did is going to help a LOT. We already knew this and going toothless for five months was never going to be a joy (in fact, it caused me lots of tears), but okay. It was going to be a great diet and whoo hoo! Right? Sure.

3) THE PLAN: They’ll build a 3-D impression and scale of my mouth and take a peek at what I have going on in there to see how I can have my teeth made for after. He’s fairly certain I can hold an upper denture plate. I have a ‘nice curvature of the palate’. Score.

4) IMPLANTATION: Sounds scary, right? It is. They cut open your gum line down to your jaw and stick in a plate with five titanium posts attached. It looks like this, more or less:



Healing time from that? 5-6 months. Yeah, a no-chew, no bite diet for almost a year. I went from 4 months to 9 months (on a generous estimate) real quick, folks.

5) Once that’s done, they make the ‘crowns’ that sit on those screws and THEY look like this:



Yes, I can technically wear an upper plate during those six months I’m healing but it won’t be comfortable because I’d have teeth rubbing against open sores and I still can’t use them to chew. It’d be kind of useless.


When it’s all said and done, uppers and lowers look like this:




COST: $30,000

Approx: $2500 for the upper plate, $12,500 for the posts themselves and 12,500 for the surgery & crowns. Not to mention incidentals like oh, anesthesia.

SOOOO, this is where things stand now.

A new mess for a new day. Here we go.

Movin’ right along…

SO. AWESOME.

The surgery that I’m NOT having today? Had to wait for a referral to a new doctor. That referral happened in person yesterday and they’re so eager to get it going, I have an appointment TOMORROW.

Yes.