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Another new diagnosis

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi everyone, I was diagnosed with a Stage 1 tumor in Nov. 07 It was small (2cm) and located on the right kidney at the artery feeding the kidney. They say a radical nephrectomy is the solution as a partial is not an option. I just had a second CT scan with contrast taken to validate the initial diagnosis and to see if the tumor has grown. I have an appointment with my urologist/surgeon on Mar 11, 2008 and I will probably schedule the surgery then. I hate to lose a kidney, but I haven't been able to find any option other than watch and wait and from what I see and read that is not a good idea. I have been also diagnosed with prostate cancer (early stage also) and I am not a candidate for radiation for that so I may need surgery there also. I believe I should have the kidney removed first. Can anyone tell me if their kidney cancer was verified by biopsy PRIOR to removal of their kidney? When they did remove the kidney, did they do a pathological biopsy and share all the information with you? Thanks for your answers. Mike in La Mesa, CA

Lisauk
Posts: 7
Joined: Feb 2008

Hi Mike,
My mother of 64 was diagnosed in November 2007 with kidney cancer (a tumour in her right kidney) this was verified by an mri scan. She had the operation done on January 16th (radical nephrectomy) and tomorrow she is seeing the oncologist as it is about 7 weeks now after the operation and the oncologist will inform us of the pathology results, ie what type of cancer, stage and grade and if she will need follow up therapy. Hope this is of some help.
Wishing you well.
Lisa

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi Lisa. Yes, that was helpful. I will be 64 in July. I need to find an oncologist to discuss this with after the surgery. Thanks for your response. I haven't been able to locate a kidney cancer support group, so I am thankful for the ACS site.

Mike

robinlouise's picture
robinlouise
Posts: 6
Joined: Jan 2008

Mike, My husband was dx in 12/07 with a 10cm of left kidney and 5cm on right. He is on a clinical trial drug "sutent" to shrink the tumors before surgery so they hopefully can do a partial on the right so he has 2/3 of 1 kidney. The Cleveland Clinic is known for doing partials
but i see you live in CA. In your case i would let them take the kidney out since the other one is not affected. Good luck, Robin/Ohio

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi Robin. Your comments were helpful. I am thankful that they found my tumor at such a small size. Do they know how long it will take for the drug will shrink your husband's tumors? I certaninly wish him luck and will say a prayer for him. I appreciate your response. I have not been able to locate a local kidney cancer support group near my home.

Mike

nonnatoo
Posts: 34
Joined: Nov 2007

Hi Mike, I had a partial nephrectomy of my left kidney which was done laporascopically at the Yale Cancer Center in New Haven, CT. The Dx was a T-1A renal clear cell carcinoma. The tumor was less than 4 centimeters in size and I have 60% of my kidney remaining. Surgeon said no biopsy before surgery, mentioning the possibility of cancer cells getting loose during procedure. My surgery was 10/23/07 and kidney is almost healed. There are places that do partial nephrectomy but I don't know what the criteria are. It's worth checking into, I think. Hope this is helpful to you. RoseAnn

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi Roseann,

I am glad you are doing well. My surgeon also does partial nephrectomies, but has indicated that it is not an option as the tumor is located exactly where the artery that feeds the kidney is attached to the kidney. Will you be following up with an oncologist? What have they said about any possibility of a recurrance? This was helpful and I wish you the best.

Mike

Lisauk
Posts: 7
Joined: Feb 2008

Hi Mike

My mothers tumour had also grown onto an artery, which did make the operation a little more complicated, but there are many people who have had this occur, with a successful operation. My mothers oncologist told her that there is a 40 percent chance of reoccurrance, but bascially she has to get on with her life and try it put it behind her now, she was asked if she would be interested in taking a trial drug for 3 years which could stop any reoccurance, so thats something shes got to think about, has anybody else in here whose reading gone through with such a trial?. If so would like some info on your experience.
thanks

Lisa

nonnatoo
Posts: 34
Joined: Nov 2007

Hi Mike,

I'm sorry for not replying sooner. My surgeon is also an oncologist, so I am continuing in his care. He has said that since the surgery was successful in removing all of tumor and margins are clear, the likelihood of a recurrence is very low. I am still checking with him on a weekly basis right now because of a minor urine leak into my abdomen. My kidney is functioning normally. Once I am completely healed, I will be seen for a yearly CAT scan.
Hope you are doing well. Keep me posted and let me know if you have any other questions.
By the way I just heard about the American Urology Association website. Check it out. RoseAnn

jac21
Posts: 5
Joined: Aug 2007

Hi Mike, I was diagnosed with exactly the same size tumour on my kidney in march 2007. I live in England. I was told that because the tumour was growing on the artery the whole kidney had to be removed. If the tumour had been in a different position i would have had part of my kidney removed and not all of it. They refused to do a biopsy before hand because they said if it is cancer the cells might disperse. They said they didn't know if I had cancer but I found out 3 days after the operation that it was a stage 1 clear cell carcinoma. I am 41 years old. When they removed my kidney they also removed my lymph nodes and renal glands because apparently the cancer can return in either of those glands and/or the lungs- I don't know if the process is exactly the same in America. I will now have yearly chest x-rays to check for any return. I am glad to hear that both of your cancers are at the early stages that means that you could be completely cured after both operations. Jacqui in Eastbourne, England.

trishpm
Posts: 22
Joined: Nov 2004

Solid kidney tumors are not usually biopsied before surgery to remove them unless metastases are present and the origin of the cancer needs to be established. First, a very high percentage of solid kidney tumors are malignant. Needle biopsies done through the skin can miss cancer in a complex tumor, cancer cells can seed along the needle track, and cells can be dislodged into the blood circulation by the biopsy needle--therefore biopsies are not usually done before surgery.

taksilver
Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi Mike, I lost my right kidney in Sept. '06. I had a 8 cm tumor. I was only 30 when it happened. I was told they don't normally do a biopsy on kidney tumors. Mine happened fast. I was told and two weeks later I was having surgery. I didn't have time to really think about losing a kidney, I just did it. I got an actual copy of the pathology. I was able to discuss it with the dr and also take it home and research it online.

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi,

I haven't posted in awhile. I had another CT scan in June 08 which revealed the tumor was not imagined and it has grown ever so slowly (2mm in 3 months). I have scheduled another CT scan in Oct 08 and see what is goin on then. I previusly did not schedule surgery because my daughter was getting married and I wanted to be there. Now I am just procrastinating I guess.

Has anyone heard of "Watchful Waiting" as in Prostate Cancer? That is my present plan for the Prostate Cancer.

Does anyone know of a support group for kidney cancer patients in the San Diego, CA area?

My prayers to all.

Mike

KCFighter's picture
KCFighter
Posts: 50
Joined: Jan 2006

Mike,

I know RCC is a slow grower but there is nothing to gain by taking a watch and wait approach when it comes to kidney cancer. You're only giving the cancer the chance to grow and possibly spread. I had stage 1, my tumor was just 2.5cm in my right kidney. I was just 37 and had a full nephrectomy done the via "keyhole" method. At my age, taking the full kidney is not desired but like your case, they had no choice. I was strangly calm about the whole thing before surgery...a lot like you. I think it had a lot to do with not feeling sick. Now, I'm so thankful I had the surgery. I still worry about recurrence but am being followed with blood work and CT scans. The best thing you can do for your daughter is to get the surgery done. I do recommend getting the surgery done by a urologist who specializes in the keyhole surgery and RCC. Get that stuff out and don't give it a chance to grow any longer!

nonnatoo
Posts: 34
Joined: Nov 2007

Mike,
KCFighter is right...Have the surgery now. That's the best for both you and your daughter. I understand how difficult the decision can be. In my situation I was recovering from surgery for uterine cancer(July 25'07) when my kidney cancer was diagnosed, but when my kidney surgeon-onc recommended immediate surgery(October 25'07) rather than watchful waiting..He said,"It's better to take care of it now while you're healthy rather than waiting for it to grow,".... it made sense to me. He wasn't even sure if it could be done laparoscopically or if he could save any portion of my kidney. The result; laparoscopic was successful and a part of my kidney was saved! Like KC, I'm so happy now that I did it. You will be too. Healthy and one kidney is far better than living with the cancer. Good Luck. RoseAnn

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Nonnatoo,

Thanks for the support. I have an appointment scheduled with an oncologist and my urologist on Monday, 6 Oct. I intend to schedule the surgery asap. It really helps to hear from others such as yourself.

Mike

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

KCFighter,

Thanks for your support. I have an appointment scheduled with an oncologist and my urologist on Monday, 6 Oct. I intend to schedule the surgery asap. It really helps to hear from others such as yourself.

Mike

jleslie
Posts: 1
Joined: Dec 2005

Hi Mike,
I was diagnosed 13 years ago with stage 2 kidney cancer. At that time, my only option was surgery to remove the affected kidney. The surgery was major at that time due to not having the technology of today with laproscopic methods. I was 40 when diagnosed and as you can see, I am doing very well with one kidney. The recovery was kind of long but well worth the time to take it a little easier and reflect on life. I have checkups now only once a year with CT scans and blood work, but living with one kidney has been no problem whatsoever. Best of luck and my prayers are with you.

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

jleslie,

Thanks for the support. I have an appointment scheduled with an oncologist and my urologist on Monday, 6 Oct. I intend to schedule the surgery asap. It really helped to hear from KCFighter, Nonnatoo, and yourself,

Mike

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

Jleslie,

Well, I just completed a laproscopic Nephrectomy on the 20th of Nov. It went extremely well. I was out of the hospital the next day. The surgery was performed at Kaiser San Diego Medical Center and the three doctors I had went out of their way to perform the surgery laproscopically as I had a lot of scarring from previous surgeries. I cannot thank them enough. I will know in a week or so if the tumor was benign or malignant but either way I feel so much better knowing that it is GONE. A great relief. The doctors said they believe they removed everything completly and are very confident. After months of post-ponement I am so glad to have it done and thank you to all that encouraged met to do it. Love you all.

Mike

Triplempe's picture
Triplempe
Posts: 16
Joined: Mar 2008

jleslie,

I received the pathology report on the tumor on the removed kidney. It was renal cell carcinoma and it appears that all cancer was removed. Great news. Thanks for encouraging me tot have the nephrectomy and not wait too long.

Mike

tbado
Posts: 11
Joined: May 2008

my cancer was detected when a massive primary tumour ruptured. I needed emergency surgery and my right kidney was removed. Stage 4 was confirmed by biopsy of other suspicious nodes.

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