Thursday, January 26, 2012

Denosumab and metalsmithing

Here I thought that metalsmithing started today but it actually started last week. I don't know how I got that wrong because I thought I put the start date in the calendar right after I decided to take the class. I must have got confused. Of course it turned out ok. I was able to pick up last week's and this week's the projects fairly easily and I've started working on something new.

It turns out that we'll be learning a new stone setting technique. It isn't the one I was interested in learning but I like it anyways and can see how it could be used. This session we're also going to be doing a lot with casting which is something new for me. We're going to start with doing some lost-wax casting of natural objects like flowers, seeds, and leaves. I have to find one and then figure out what to do with it - it's no good just making the mold and using up the silver to cast them. Silver isn't free so I don't want to waste it.

I asked my instructor about synclastic and anticlastic raising and making spiculums and she said, "those techniques require a lot of hammering." There are ten or so students in the class and if everyone were hammering metal the noise would be unbearable. Some people are good at hammering and others are very, very, very loud normally - imagine if they had to hammer this much! While I'd love to learn these techniques, that studio isn't soundproofed enough to make learning them pleasurable so I'll explore them on my own.

I also spoke to my instructor about my compulsion to make little boxes, even though I know very little about how to actually make them. She's fine with me using some of the techniques we're learning to make little boxes, if I want. I ordered a book on how to make boxes today and I'm looking forward to working through it.

In addition to being metalsmithing day, it was also denosumab day. They were running late at the cancer center so I was late to metalsmithing today. My nurse was running a half-hour late and then my bloodwork came back with elevated phosphorus. Fortunately, my calcium levels were normal. The nurse contacted the pharmacist who contacted my oncologist who said that she'd investigate this and to go ahead with the denosumab.

Calcium and phosphorus work together and there could be all kinds of things causing the elevated phosphorus (also known as hyperphosphatemia). My instincts say that it's related to last month's low calcium  levels even though this month's calcium levels were normal. High phosphorus can also be caused by kidney problems, which I don't think I have, or bone mets, which I do have but which are supposed to be stable.

This denosumab was supposed to be my last one at the cancer center and the last bloodwork for the denosumab. However, it would make sense for my oncologist to want me to do the bloodwork again next month and maybe some other tests. For example, if we're concerned about bone met activity then it might be a good idea to see what my tumour markers are doing. There may be other blood tests that she wants to do as well. I spoke with the nurse about this and she was going to contact my oncologist about whether I should come in for more bloodwork next month.

It was definitely a big day. I'm enjoying lazing around and relaxing with Ian and Gozer

1 comment:

The Hyperlexian Aspie said...

your scheduling issues sound a lot like mine (went to an appointment a whole week early). it's frustrating!

sounds like you will have a lot of fun again this time around in metalsmithing.

hopefully the raised phosphorous levels are not significant. keep us posted.

love,
vicki