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Advise on Follow Up CAre

LisaJo
Posts: 13
Joined: Apr 2006

I am due to go in for my 3rd year follow up. I had my left kidney taken out almost 3 years ago. After reading some of what you all say I am wondering if I should have the CT Scan this time. I had 2 in the first year that looked good so he gave me a year off of the CT Scan and just a chest x ray last year. I do have a different type of contrast used that is supposedly not as hard on the kidneys. What is all of your expert opinions. This years scan will be of my chest and abdomin. Is an MRI better? Do they have to use contrast for that? Please educate me with all of your expert kowledge out there.

Thanks and Good Health to all of you!
Lisa

lbinmsp's picture
lbinmsp
Posts: 266
Joined: Jun 2006

Hello and glad to hear you've had a good 3 years (and more to come!). I can only speak for myself. I had CT's every 3 months for the first year (of chest and abdomen), then went to every 6 months and unfortunately am now back to every 3 due to a recurrence almost 5 years later (dang!). They always do blood work before my ct scans to ensure my remaining kidney is healthy. If the blood work ever comes out negatively, then no contrast. MRI is a good diagnostic tool, but CT gives better views/definitions.

God bless!

LisaJo
Posts: 13
Joined: Apr 2006

Thanks for the recommendations. I guess I'm still on the right track. I can't decide if it's best not to come to this site or not. My Dr. tells me not to worry and then when I come here, in most cases I read about the cancer coming back in either the other kidney or elsewhere. My husband tells me that I only hear bout the worse cases on these sites. I don't want to fool myself but want to stay educated and positive. How did they find it the second time? through regular screenings. I will pray for you all others to stay strong and healthy.
Lisa

anniec
Posts: 18
Joined: Mar 2008

Hi all, I'm in my 7th week of recovery. Had clear cell in right kidney. 7cm tumor and 1/3 of kidney removed at memorial sloan ketering in nyc.all margins clear and lymph nodes clear as well. But lisajo I know how you feel, Dr.s say I'm "cured" not sure I should believe it? They say knowledge is power, but I must say it has been scary to read some of the stories on these sights. I know I have a lot ahead of me, Hope I never have to go through this experience again, but I know it could have been worse! I must remember to pray for my fellow survivors!

lbinmsp's picture
lbinmsp
Posts: 266
Joined: Jun 2006

I guess coming to this site sometimes is, for me, helpful. I like to read about all the successes that are out there! As for being 'cured' ... I don't know if that's a good word or not. I tell people I'm 'cancer free' which is what I am!

As for they found it the 2nd time, it was actually incidental to an early breast cancer. During a routine CT for radiation, they saw the mass in my lung. Just hang in there! I think we all need to believe that we're FINE until and unless somebody tells us we arent and even THEN I argue that 'until the fat lady sings' ... it just isn't happening!

anniec
Posts: 18
Joined: Mar 2008

LBinMSP- How are you doing? Anniec

lbinmsp's picture
lbinmsp
Posts: 266
Joined: Jun 2006

I'm doing well - thank you for asking! My last checkup was clear and I'm now being moved to every 6 month followup (YEAH!). In fact, I'm now planning my next great 'life adventure' - moving to another area and starting my own business! As someone once said - if not now - when? Tomorrow isn't promised to anyone whether they have cancer or not. Gotta live it!

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

Lisajo, congrats on your 3 years. I'm 2-1/2 years out and anxiously coming up on my 3 year in March! I know what you mean about reading the recurrence rates on this website. I tend to think I'm free & clear but then come to this website and read about so many recurrences happening to survivors who are farther out from their original diagnosis than me. It's scary but I think staying informed is always a good thing.

IBINSMP - I'm sorry to hear of your recurrence after 5 years. Glad to hear it sounds like thye were able to get this one too. By the way, you mentioned breast cancer...was this a recurrence of RCC or a new cancer?

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