This happened on a smaller scale during the last session, and it turns out that the culprit is cortisone, which is given during the Monday chemo, in order to fight possible allergies with the chemo products.
While this should have made for a dull few hours before it's time to get up, the events of the day kept being updated on the news and my Facebook feed, so i didn't really see the hours pass by.
Ankara: the Russian Ambassador killed while opening an exhibition
Berlin: 12 dead and dozens injured by a runaway lorry, probably taken over by a Pakistani migrant, who may have killed the Polish driver to seize the vehicle
Zurich: shots and three people wounded in front of an Islamic centre
Siberia: 53 people dead (and numbers rising) from drinking a "bath lotion" containing methyl instead of ethyl alcohol,
And last but not least, drama in Washington DC as the Electoral College confirms Donald Trump will be the next President of the USA.
And this got me thinking, as there is a very human need to make order out of chaos.
For the last few years, the rise of anger and discontent against typical middle-of-the road politics, where centre right parties alternate with centre-left parties, ending up in more or less following very similar policies, has, in parallel with the globalisation of trade, disenfranchised the lower-middle class, and the recent financial crisis of 2008 has created a lot of pain for millions of people, while many countries have a GDP that's still below the one in 2008.
This has led to coalitions of the extreme, where the far-right and the far-left mount a more and more significant challenge to the traditional parties, and the present coalitions between the SPD (socialists) and the CDU (centre-right) in Germany is probably the last we'll see for many years. As well as the gentleman's agreement in the European Parliament to divide the 5 years Presidency in two half terms, one for the Socialists, the other one for the EPP (centre-right) i dead int he water for the next elections.
If you think this has nothing to do with medicine, and in particular cancer, bear with me for a moment.
The extreme polarisation of the new right, which i refuse to call alt-right, because all they are are neo-facists, the angry white males in the US, the increased marginalisation and radicalisation of badly integrated minorities in Europe, this has been slowly building up for years, and because it nearly nowhere received adequate attention, and treatment, these localised irritations developed into cysts, and then into small tumours, reaching phase II in this decade.
We are witnessing the moment when the Phase III localised tumours, whether they are in Venezuela, Mozambique, Iran, but also Germany, UK, Austria, Italy, and of course the US, are about to break from the original tumour site, and burst into Phase IV and start metastasising.
The sheer level of conflicts of interests that Trump is bringing int he White House is staggering, and even such a healthy organism with its numerous checks and balances is threatening to be overwhelmed, when the republican party, or its mutated and fast mutating ultra-right and anti-science avatar is in power not only in the House, but also int he Senate, and has the Presidency.
What will happen when this runaway metastasis starts encountering other (possibly worse) mutant systems, like the kleptocratic Russia, or the ever more dictatorial Turkey, and their interests differ?
Is it still time to stop this spread and find the appropriate therapies to being in those dangerous mutations?
Time will tell, but my generally optimistic nature is not very confident on this one, for the time being.