Beneath the Wheel with apologies to Hermann Hesse
Today I go under. I go under anesthesia that is. It's time to have my gullet checked, or in more properly my esopha ... Gus. So you're name's not Gus, I can't resist a good pun, or a bad one for that matter.
The doctors check to see if those cantankerous blood vessels that run through the esophagus are getting too uppity. See, there's what they call the portal venous system and same the blood vessels that serve the liver also pass through the esophagus on there way to who knows where. AND ... since the blood pressure has gone up in my portal system because of all the roads there that are under construction, or, more properly, deconstruction in my liver, the portal blood pressure also increases in my throat.
Those blankity blank blood vessels have been known to erupt and explode, at times leaving the poor sucker housing all that misery, inoperative or worse.
The good doctors look at them through an endoscope and judge their viability. If they look like they're ready to leap out of the surrounding tissue, they tie a little knot around them cutting of the blood and they die. New blood vessels eventually form and everyone goes home happy not puking blood and dying.
Afterward I have an ultrasound scheduled. They'll use sound waves to recreate a picture of my liver that only they can understand. A nice looking young girl will smear a cold lubricate on my belly and run a phallic device over it to the beeps of a machine designed by aliens. What's next the anal probe?
A good half of the day will be shot and I won't notice any improvement in my condition. UPMC will, however, make money on me and isn't that what it's really all about? Gene