The Stubborn Cyst Story
Not my tongue, not my teeth...something foreign. Something under my tongue. I paniked and I froze. I sat there for a few seconds hoping that it would somehow vanish. When I realized that that was not going to happen, I jumped up and ran to the bathroom. I positioned myself close to the mirror, took a deep breath and opened my mouth. Under my tongue there was a fluid filled sac coming up from the floor of my mouth. It was the size of a jelly bean.
That's a Jelly Bean...not what was in my mouth
I made an appointment with an oral surgeon and waited....and worried...and worried some more.
I was all, "ohmygoshIhavecancerandmymouthisgoingtofalloff!"
The day of the appointment finally arrived (two weeks later). After a short examination, the oral surgeon diagnosed me with having a cyst on one of my salivary glands. On a duct coming off of the gland, really.
The cyst was blocking the duct creating pressure. Eventually, fluid would shoot up the duct and into the floor of my mouth. The tissue on the floor of my mouth was trapping the fluid. The fluid would eventually be absorbed by the tissues, but this process would take a long time and then eventually repeat itself. Very cyclical.
The oral surgeon told me that these types of cysts can appear after trauma or for no reason at all. I had not experienced any trauma so my little friend just came out of the dang ol' blue.
The oral surgeon said, "Let's wait and see if this goes away."
Reluctantly, I waited some more....worried some more...and then went to see the oral surgeon again as the cyst did not just go away.
He scheduled me for a cyst excision.
On the day of the "procedure" he sat me in the dental chair (remember, an oral surgeon also removes wisdom teeth and what-not) and proceded to give me a series of the most painful shots I have ever had. I have had a ton of dental work and a ton of painful shots and procedures. None of them came close to this. The pain was great. The shots were in my jaw bone, under my tongue, in my tongue. Ouch.
Then, he cut away. He cut, I bled, his assistant used the suction tube and then they stuffed my mouth full of gauze. Then they yanked the blood soaked gauze out of my mouth, cut some more, sucked some more and stuffed some more.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Everything was very hurried. Very rapid. My anxiety was growing by the second. I thought I might have a heart attack. All I could do was dig my nails in the arms of the chair and pray for it to be over with.
It was over quickly, thank the Lord. It took about 5 minutes. Five, torturous minutes. Right when he finished, the oral surgeon left the room in a hurry. I tried to stand up but my legs were jelly. I thought I was going to pass out. He did not stay to answer any questions. Not that I could talk...my mouth was stuffed with gauze. I could have written my questions, though. Jerk.
10 days later, the cyst returned. The oral surgeon said he must have not gotten it all. Good news was that he sent the cyst he did remove to be tested and it came back non-cancerous. Whew. Bad news was I had to go through the procedure again.
This time, I wanted the gas damnit! Procedure number two was just as painful, but not as horrible thanks to the nitrus. I was able to go to a special place inside my head. My imaginary private beach.
10 days later, the cyst returned. Again. DAMNIT!!!!! The oral surgeon said, "well, let's just wait and see if it will just go away."
Really? Um.....have we not done the "wait and see" thing already? Pardon my language but Fuck You Doctor Wait-n-See!
I left his office and spoke with my good buddy Danny who happens to be a surgical nurse. He told me I needed to see an Ear Nose and Throat doctor and that I probably needed a surgery, not a "procedure."
I went to the ENT and he did in fact tell me that I need to have a surgery. He said they have to take their time to really try and get it all. They have to be careful and not rushed. Wow....that is pretty much the opposite of what I went through (twice!) with the oral surgeon. The ENT said it is possible that the cyst comes back even after the surgery and that they may have to remove the gland. It's ok though, we have many salivary glands.
The surgery is scheduled for this Friday. I should go home that day. Bing, bang, boom.