Mickey Mantle was one of my favorite baseball heroes as I was growing up in Dargan. I still remember the exciting 1961 home run race between him and Roger Maris.
As Mantle lay in his New York hospital bed dying from cancer of the liver, he famously said, “If I knew I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself.”
He died Aug. 13, 1995, at the age of 63.
In parting, I think the “Mick” gave us some very good advice. A little prevention can often serve a valuable purpose.
As I prepared for my recent visit to the endoscopic clinic for my scheduled colonoscopy, I anticipated getting my doctor’s instructions and those preliminary items.
When I had my earlier appointment with the doctor, I knew I had hit the lottery when he told me the good news. There is a $20 rebate for purchasing your MoviPrep (appropriately named).
Colon cancer is the third-most common cancer among males in the world today. For women, it is the fourth-most common of all cancers.
In our country, there will be about 143,000 cases of colon cancer identified this year, with some 51,000 deaths.
When you consider that a colonoscopy exam can help reduce these deaths, the benefits are obvious.
The most effective preventive measure that can be taken to minimize the risk of colon cancer in our society today is the early detection and removal of precancerous colon polyps.
It has been suggested that the removal of these polyps can reduce this cancer’s occurrence by some 90 percent.
It is usually recommended that you schedule a colonoscopy at the age of 50 unless you have a family history of colon cancer, then these exams can be scheduled earlier.
I know you “pilgrims” must be a little curious about the process. I thought I might share my experience with you.
The day before the procedure, you restrict your diet to liquids. Then drink a bottle of magnesium citrate, followed a few hours later by 8 ounces of the MoviPrep in four 15-minute intervals. You then repeat the MoviPrep procedure five hours before the actual procedure.
Now I know you’ve heard about how “nasty” tasting the MoviPrep is to drink. Not really a problem. It’s simply a “mind over matter” issue, and between glasses I usually take a tablespoon or two of warm chicken broth to help with the taste.
I pretend the chicken broth is rotisserie chicken.
Then, you just wait, but don’t tarry too far from an outhouse, portable toilet or bathroom. It will be a lot safer for you that way.
Once you actually get to the endoscopic center the following day, you will be directed into a medical cubicle, given a gown with a draft, receive some basic instructions from the nurse, have an IV established and be provided some information by the anesthetist.
Karen, an RN, greeted my arrival and inserted the IV while I waited my turn to the exam room. I learned that some 30 to 40 of these exams are performed each day at Robinwood Professional Center from Monday through Friday.
Rebecca came by a little later and informed me she would be doing the honors in regard to those “dream” drugs. She also told me that she did the same five years ago for me. I replied, “I don’t remember anything so you must have done a pretty good job.”
Susan then came out to drive my gurney into the exam room and said she enjoyed reading my columns. Rebecca whispered something to me and I departed to parts unknown.
My experience was uneventful. Dr. Cremins and his entire staff represented the epitome of professionalism.
Mickey Mantle, indeed, gave us some pretty good advice. Hope you were listening.
Now, how about some MoviPrep?
Lloyd “Pete” Waters is a Sharpsburg resident who writes for The Herald-Mail.