I had a follow up appointment on Monday June 4th.
So the good news is that things are looking good. The treatment (both the freezing with the liquid nitrogen and the ointment I’m using 3 times a week) seem to be doing the job. The doctor used the liquid nitrogen on two more spots (Ouch!) while I was there in order to “err on the side of caution.”
The bad news is I left rather annoyed. I was trying to get some peace of mind by asking more questions about HPV in general, and didn’t really get satisfactory answers. Mainly, I asked if I could find out what strain of the virus I had.
My theory was, IF I end up ever having the “Hey I have a communicable incurable illness” talk with a woman in the future, and she HAD taken the HPV vaccine, I could tell her what strain I had, so she would know if it was one of the ones that the vaccine took care of.
Anyway, he was baffled by my request. He said, when they send the sample to the lab they’re just checking for confirmation that it is HPV, and that it’s not cancerous. He said they don’t usually “type it” for men. They do for women, because for them it is a much more serious problem and more prone to cancer. He kept saying that it doesn’t matter what strain I had, the treatments were the same, and that no matter what, ALL women SHOULD be taking the vaccine. I really don’t think he understands why I’m so upset by finding out I have genital warts. Although he didn’t use these exact words, he pretty much said, “it’s no big deal, everyone has it.”
He did add that if the warts come back after this treatment, he could send another sample to the lab then, and get it typed, but he was utterly baffled by my request, and warned me that my insurance likely wouldn’t cover it.
I’ve noticed similar statements from some 43Things members in response to my earlier posts. One of my friends also just shrugged, and said I was over-reacting.
Why is it that I seem to be the only one who cares that I am infected with a potentially incurable illness that I could pass to someone else? Why is everyone so cavalier about this? It’s easy for people to say, “Oh…Brian, you’re blowing this out of proportion. Practically everybody has it anyway, and there’s a vaccine, so stop worrying” when you don’t have it.
You know what? If you don’t have it, or something similar, than don’t bother giving me useless advice. Maybe I am blowing this out of proportion. But if you don’t have the same problem, then you have no place telling me that I am. Just let me blow off steam by writing down my thoughts, and quell that urge to offer advice. Thanks.
I’m sorry, but I view this as pretty damn serious. There isn’t a cure for this yet, and I don’t want to be responsible for passing it to someone else. Why is that so fucking hard for everyone to understand?
Okay…venting done. Back to Happy Brian now.
Next follow up is at the end of July.