Note: This is a continuation of my presurgical consult, part one here.

by George Taniwaki

After lunch, I go to the UWMC surgery pavilion to meet with an anesthesiologist for a pre-anesthesia clinic. I hand her my medical chart (see below). She picks out a form with a checklist of  medical questions and asks me to fill it out.

After reviewing my responses to the questionnaire, she reads through an extensive list of medicines asking if I am taking it or allergic to it. My answer is no” to every one. The reasons for these questions is to make sure that I’m not taking any meds that could interfere with anesthesia or would be dangerous in combination with it.

As I do at every other physical exam, I report that I have a functional systolic heart murmur. She asks about it. I say that I’ve had it since I was a child. She uses a stethoscope to listen to my heart and reports that I still have it.

She reviews my medical chart and asks why I came to UWMC on Sep 16, 2009 to get an ECG performed. I reply it was in preparation for this upcoming surgery. She says that was over a year ago and I may need another. She leaves the room to ask the attending physician. The answer is positive, so she hooks me up and gets a new reading. She prints out the old reading and compares them. They are nearly identical.

She asks me what I can tell her about my low WBC, low lymphocyte count, and low platelet count. (Incidentally, today’s WBC is 2.9, which is lower than any of my previous results.) I reply, “the low counts appear to be benign and that a bone marrow biopsy was clinically unremarkable.” I sound like a know what I’m talking about, but I’m just repeating the words of the hematologist at SCCA (see Jul 2009 blog post).

She seems satisfied and adds the results of the questionnaire to my chart.


My surgical chart. Photo taken on day of surgery by Susan Wolcott

She says that the exact time of my surgery on Wednesday will be set on Tuesday morning. Someone will call me that day (tomorrow) to tell me what time to check in. That’s a bit odd. I just assumed that I needed to check in at 6am and that the surgery would start at 9am. But I guess there is a chance that an urgent surgery could affect the schedule. I hope it doesn’t.

For more information on becoming a kidney donor, see my Kidney donor guide.

[Update 1: I receive a call on Tuesday afternoon. My surgery is scheduled for 9am, my check-in time is 6:15.]