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Innocuous - Dr. Ross Andersen DC DN - Blog Series - Part 9

Dr. Ross Andersen DC ND

The Miracle Hunter

©2024 Dr. Ross Andersen DC ND

Alzheimer’s disease anyone?

My mother had Alzheimer’s disease. It did not kill her, but it was a major factor in her demise. She was actually killed by the medical profession in a hospital where she had spent three months convalescing after a heart attack. She was diabetic and heart attacks are quite common in elderly diabetics. After three months in hospital, she would have lucid episodes where she realized where she was and why she was there. It terrified her. 30 seconds later she would forget what she had realized and calm down.

She became somewhat cantankerous during these episodes and the hospital staff decided she needed to be medicated so that she would not be aggressive toward the nurses, orderlies and nursing aides. They put her on an antipsychotic drug called Rispiridol. I do not believe the drug was indicated, as she was not psychotic. She was simply frustrated with her situation. Even someone with a 30-second memory gets frustrated after three months. After 14 years of Alzheimer’s disease, she slipped into a drug-induced, five-day coma and never woke up. She slipped away, peacefully and quietly. The next adventure was many years later and significantly more ubiquitous.

In 2018, my short-term memory and concentration started to be adversely affected. My mother’s Alzheimer’s disease began when she was 69 years old and the logical conclusion for myself at 68 was that I had early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. I designed myself a protocol and started to follow it. Nothing improved and my situation simply got worse by the week. I could now identify with what my mother experienced years before.

In early January 2019, I was working on a project in my garage. I was on my knees and suddenly fell over on my side. My brain told my muscles to get me up and they refused. Needless to say, this was somewhat alarming and after five minutes I managed to get myself up and into my living room. This was highly abnormal and I decided that the next day I would venture to the hospital ER a few minutes away. That was an interesting visit, ending very differently than what I had expected. Luckily, I got the message early this time. I reiterate that the creator has interesting ways of warning you about cancer.

After a short discussion with the ER doctor, she stated that she did not think I had Alzheimer’s disease. She thought I had something significantly more serious. She recommended a CT scan of my head, which I was not happy about, but felt was necessary. I had never had a neurological challenge in 68 years and was very concerned.

CT scan of the tumour

Two hours later I was looking at the CT scan above, [tumor circled] and was experiencing the same emotions as after my weekend of research on my 2005 diagnosis. The 8 cm tumor was in the right/frontal lobe of my brain and occupied a significant amount of space. Additionally, the whole right side of my brain appeared to be swollen and have a significantly different consistency than the left side. Needless to say, I knew what this type of brain tumor picture could mean in the short and long term. I had lost a cousin to brain cancer a few years earlier. His saga included surgery, re-occurrence and a slow, painful, agonizing death. I began contemplating all of my possible options, including departure. MAID [Medical Assistance in Dying] had just become available in Canada.

I was immediately relegated to the head neurosurgeon at Kelowna General Hospital. My guides/angels, call them whatever you like, had a different plan. They didn’t particularly appreciate his idea of doing a biopsy. That biopsies spread cancer is a well-known fact. In order to avoid a biopsy, they sent the head neurosurgeon away on an emergency conference. I was handed over to the young hotshot neurosurgeon who gladly took on my case. He did not want a biopsy and suggested that an MRI would yield significantly more information without being invasive. I started to like this young, well-respected doctor. He was actually younger than my offspring at the time.

The MRI was performed on Monday morning after a sleepless night in the hospital. He had the results very quickly and informed me that he felt the tumor could be removed, as it was encapsulated and did not have fingers and protrusions like many brain-tumors. I asked him when the procedure could be performed and he said that Friday had an opening. I agreed and was booked for a craniotomy to remove the tumor in four days. 

As I had lost most of a hospital night’s sleep, I informed him that the surgery would likely be more successful if I could sleep in my own bed. The hospital was minutes away and he agreed on that strategy. I had to spend the days in the hospital, but was allowed to return home to sleep. Thursday night in the hospital was obligatory as there was much in preparing me for brain surgery. The surgery was scheduled for first thing the next morning.

Being prepped for brain surgery is a somewhat terrifying experience. One does not know what one will be after the surgery. Will there be a neurological deficit, functional challenges or any other sort of postsurgical result? The stories we hear are frequently true. As I had no choice in the matter, I was very “matter of fact” about the situation. There were few options for me other than brain surgery and the possible follow-up therapies. I had not examined the options that might show up after the removal of a brain tumor. Those options ended up being very educational and mind-expanding.

"Never play with the door handle!"

My history of brain injury included early life incidents. I fell out of a car at 50 miles an hour when I was two years of age. It is necessary to describe that incident in this document as it resulted in 56 stitches in my scalp. I also had numerous lacerations and other injuries that were overlooked because of the excessive bleeding of my scalp. Thankfully I have no conscious memory of that incident, but was allowed to recall it at an antique automobile show in 2002. An identical car was found at this show and I decided to find out if I could recall the incident.

After obtaining permission to sit in the backseat of this 1949 Studebaker, virtually identical to my father’s first car, I was able through self hypnosis to recall the happenings of that fateful day in 1954. This was before seatbelts and pushbutton door locks. The door lock was the handle which was pushed forward to lock and pulled back to open. I had been told by my parents to “never play with the door handle!” while I was riding in the backseat.

Strangely, two-year-olds do not understand the word “don’t”. The 1949 Studebaker had what are called “suicide doors” in the rear. The front door is opened as autos do today, but the rear doors opened the opposite from the front doors. This meant that if the door was opened a small amount while travelling, the wind would catch the door and fling it open. Thus the term “suicide doors”. I learned this lesson well as a 50 mile an hour wind has incredible power. I was outmatched.

Studebaker with "suicide doors"

Not wanting to get in trouble, I attempted to pull the door shut. At 50 miles an hour, the passing air was too strong and my attempt to close the door resulted in me being flung out of the car. Needless to say, landing on a dirt highway at 50 miles an hour was significantly traumatic to my not-so-little two-year-old body. Luckily, I was a large child. It was dusk and the light was low. My mother got the job of determining if I was still alive.

Her description of what happened next has always brought me to tears. As she ran back to determine my fate, she said that I was on my feet, covered in blood and running toward my father’s car. She stated that I was yelling “Wait for me, wait for me!”. I have always wondered what effect this has had on my psyche for the remainder of my life. Age two is a very delicate time as a second level of human consciousness is developing called the “terrible twos”. Apparently, I was as terrible as any two-year-old could possibly be. It’s hard to imagine the amount of stress this created in the lives of both my caring parents.

We sped to the nearest hospital and according to my mother, the doctor who was called in on this emergency was quite drunk. I ended up with 56 stitches holding together the lacerations of my scalp. That is a very large number of stitches and luckily, my mother as a nurse, was able to remove them weeks later. 

The purpose of this incident description is to put in context something I had done very shortly before the first brain tumor incident. I had always wanted to see what my scalp looked like after having 56 stitches decades before. A month before the first brain tumor surgery, I boldly decided to shave my head bald. This was quite a stretch for me as I always have had a full head of hair. This ended up being quite serendipitous as my head would need to be partly shaved for the surgery. I had seen patients with part of their head shaved for brain surgery and did not really like the look. My neurosurgeon was pleased that he did not have to shave my head. A friend was delighted to shave my head with much enthusiasm.

This picture was taken the day after my surgery.

Being prepped for craniotomy [brain surgery] is a rather unnerving experience. Had I not had the knowledge base that I do, it would likely have been less concerning. Surgical anaesthetic is a strange place to go in that you are basically unconscious, save for your automatic life maintenance mechanisms. Your heart beats, your lungs breathe and your kidneys continue to filter your blood. Anaesthesiologists are very accomplished doctors. They no longer let you count backwards from 100 and you simply wake up hours later, not remembering anything. It is a very strange place to be. The surgery took five hours and according to the neurosurgeon, was quite successful. He was happy with his work and felt that he got the whole tumor. This did not mean that further treatment was unnecessary. The cancer-care industry has many methods and remarkable technologies.

As with previous surgeries, I had memory from the moment my eyes opened in post-op. My loving sons had travelled from Ontario while I was in surgery. It was a delightful surprise when I opened my eyes.

A cat on a scratch tower
Smudge the Cat

The other delightful surprise was that I had not lost any neurological function whatsoever, how miraculous. It was as if I had not had surgery at all. Other than the rather large incision across my head and the urinary catheter leading to a bag hanging on the bed frame, nothing had changed. Having the catheter removed was actually the worst part of the whole ordeal. The only thing missing was Smudge my cat. He was my best friend through all of this and a significant part of the healing process both times.

Yes, I said both times as there is much more to this story.

....To be Continued in Part 10

Dr. Ross Andersen DC ND

Quantum Muscle Response Testing (QMRT) Practitioner/Instructor

Natural Health & Wellness Practitioner

Copyright 2023

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