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Anyone else had numerous lymph nodes removed in addition to their thyroid?

WhoDatFan's picture
WhoDatFan
Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2010

I was diagnosed with papillary thyroid cancer in June of 2009 and had surgery in July to remove my throid and 88 lymph nodes on both sides of my neck...22 of which had some type of carcinoma involved. I'm a 23 year old male, and being in pretty good shape, I thought that I would be able to conquer this thing without a problem. Although I am cancer free after my radioactive iodine treatment and body scans, I am still going through a deep deppression.

I have a scar that goes from ear to ear, and am getting steroid injections every 6 weeks or so to help with the keloid that I developed. I have gotten used to people asking what happened to my neck, but deep down I can't help but feel bothered by the fact that people who don't know me almost automatically lock their eyes on my scar when they first see me. Usually people are nice about it and ask me very politley, but I've run into a few people who have just been plain rude, asking "if I had been in prison" or if I "tried to hang myself"....the latter really bothered me because although 99.9% of people would never be obnoxious enough to ask someone that, it made me wonder how many people actually think this to themselves. Ultimatley, I have become very self consious, and finding myself not going out with my friends as much as I used to.

Another thing that has been bothering me since the surgery has been the numbess in my neck and right ear...just last month was the first time I put a blade to my face to shave in fear of cutting myself from not being able to feel the blade against my skin. It took me about 5 months to be able to lift my arms over my shoulders, but after 9 months the numbness is still their. Anyone know how long it takes to experience full sensation again?

If anyone has been in a similar situation, any advice on how to increase self confidence would be much appreciated. I'm in nursing school in New Orleans, and will be graduating in December with a BS in Nursing. The one positive that I take from my visible scar is that when patients ask me what happened, I feel like I'm able to give them hope and show empathy towards their situation, especially if it involes pain after a surgical procedure. I consider myself a tough individual, both mentally and physically, but this cancer has really drained me mentally...not to mention the hypothyroid effects, which I totally underestimated. Anyways, any advice, especially for anyone my age would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Tim

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

What you are going through sounds somewhat similar to what I went through, with a few differences.
I am almost 42 and going through this and feel so bad that you are only 23, which is close to my sons age.

I was diagnosed also in June (2008) with papillary thyroid cancer, had TT and lymph node removal from the right side of my neck. (Though I only had 6 removed, 4 of them being cancerous.)
When I came out of surgery I looked awful. The scar up my neck was bad, but with time it has gotten a lot better. (1 1/2 years now)
I too was self conscious and had people looking at my neck, which I still do.

Another thing in common is that I am in my second semester of nursing school. I thought the same thing you did when I would go to work at the hospital or have clinical. The patients would look and ask what I had done and I would explain and kept a positive outlook, along with praising God. I hoped that I could brighten someones day and show them that there is hope.

My thyroglobulin after TT has always been a .2 and this round of bloodwork it is up to 14.
I had my first thyrogen shot today, will have one tomorrow, RAI capsule Wed and my scan on Friday.
I feel that it is back, somewhere, and have wondered if it is now on the left side of my neck, which would also give me another scar on the other side.
One thing about the scar is that the scar from where the thyroid was taken is virtually invisible. The side scar will always be visible but it is a lot better. So maybe w/time yours will look like 2 seperate scars instead of one. (I look at it more like a smiley face rather than someone trying to hang themselves. I did look at it from the point of view that I am cancer free...hopefully I can continue to say that after my body scan this week.)

It took awhile for me to lift my right arm high. I did physical therapy for a short time. My voice still gets hoarse, can't hold a tune while singing, but I think positive in that I can still talk!
I am sure the feelings are different w/someone being 23 compared to 41. I might be in the stage of my life where I don't care what other think, but at the same time I can't imagine someone making those comments to me like they have to you. They don't have a clue as to how someone got that scar. That is just plain awful and I am sorry you had to hear those remarks.
If I can give you anymore insight just let me know.
From what I have read it seems that most people have their thyroid out and not lymph nodes like us.
Trust in God...we'll be just fine!
Oh, if you have any advise on how to get through my last month of this semester of RN school let me know. (I graduate in 2011) It is really hard to concentrate on studying while going thru this week of tests.
Michelle

miladyx
Posts: 85
Joined: May 2009

... depression. and your system does not immediately adjust once you start taking your medication, it takes quite a while for your hormone levels to become ideal... It sucks as an advise but be patient knowing that things will get better and you will start feeling better as well your scar fading away... it takes more than a year most times for the redness to go away... Just protect it religiously from the sun...

Cherish the news that you are cancer free? Having removed so many lymph nodes, that is fantastic news. did you have a follow up scan and / or bloodwork? Is your tg (thyroglobulin) undetectable?

Best.
M.

WhoDatFan's picture
WhoDatFan
Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2010

Thank you both for the advice....I honestly dont remember what my thyroglobulin level is..I think the last injection I had was in December. As far as the blood work, I have another test next week. I've had more scans than I can remember the last few months(CT, PET, CXR) and everything came back negative. Currently I'm taking 175 mcg and my last TSH level was in the 20s (i think my endocronoligist wants it below 5). I did realize that depression was a side effect, but most of my sideeffects (cold intolerance, fatigue, weight gain) occured within the 1st few months, but since then I feel my energy levels are close to what they used ot be. Deppression is the only thing that has been keeping me down. I was perscibed anxiety meds and antideppresants to help, but the sadness just keeps lingering. I'm thinking about maybe talking to a therapist this summer once I get more time from being off of school.

I also have noticed the scar around where they removed the thyroid to be fading...its just the two along the side of the neck that is still red and raised. My surgeon did mention an elective procedure to remove the scar later on down the road, but I don't think my insurance will cover that.

However, I'm glad I found this website. Its good to know that others have experienced the same thing as me. The most troubling thing has been trying to find someone else to relate to-I don't know of anyone my age who has had any type of cancer, and the ones that I know who have had thyroid cancer all older women who just had a thyroidectomy and not the neck disection.

miladyx
Posts: 85
Joined: May 2009

Your tg should be undetectable and your tsh should be below 0.1

Are you sure it is your tsh ur doctor wants below 5 and not your tg?

WhoDatFan's picture
WhoDatFan
Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2010

yeah, i'm pretty sure the goal is to get my tsh to below 5...I'm probably going to have to be closer to 250 mcg before my levels are normal. The link below is what I just came across the internet to make sure what the normal levels are.

http://thyroid.about.com/od/gettestedanddiagnosed/a/normaltshlevel.htm

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

I don't remember what the topics were, but I know I've read posts from people who were in their 20's.
I'm sure you will come across someone.
Michelle

butterfly123
Posts: 52
Joined: Feb 2010

typically endos want TSH below 1 after TT for thyroid cancer. 5 would be the upper limit of someone with a normal thyroid history. Thyroglobulin should be very low, almost undectable post RAI. You probably also want to check to see if you have antibodies as it may affect your Tg result.

You may want to talk to your endo about raising your thyroid med level. Once your TSH lowers, hopefully you'll get some relief of yor systems. It takes several weeks to got the TSH level to lower after raising the thyroid med dosage.

Best of health to you and I hope things get better.

miladyx
Posts: 85
Joined: May 2009

... and i believe "the normals" mentioned in that article are for people with thyroids...thyroid cancer patients have different goals for TSH to prevent cancer from coming back...as i mentioned i believe this goal is below 0.5 in most cases and lower than 0.1 in high risk cases...

just as a suggestion it would be good to have copies of all of your bloodwork so you can keep track of things... and know what your exact thyroglobulin and tsh values are... i dont mean to preach but i have heard a lot of times people falling through the cracks as the doctors are too busy, etc. so just wanted to make the suggestion.

cathy ma
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2010

Hello, My son is 18 years old. He will be in surgery on 4/20, TT and r side lymph node removal, more lymph nodes to be removed in july on left side. Had ultra sound today for markings, and it sounds like he will be cut from ear to ear!!Loaded with lymph node evasion! The look on the endo's face scared me, after he did the ultra sound, I asked him if had seen this many lymph nodes invaded, He said it was very impessional, but not the worse one he had ever seen!!My son, like u, is worried and scared about the inscision and pain and scars..Me to, I read ur story, and u give me hope, ur still here, alive and getting on with ur life, thats all I can hope for.. The depression, I also worry about, esp in teens, wish us luck, and I wish you only the best, look at u in this pic, smiling!!! Keep it up, Thanks for sharing...Cathy

Phyllis900's picture
Phyllis900
Posts: 21
Joined: May 2009

i am first diagnosed back in Nov 2008. i had TT and 90 lypmh nodes removed, they are all on the left side. the left me a scar like the logo of beijing olmpics. when i first had the scar, felt like ppl keep staring, but seldom asked. i had 6 steroid injection, every 2 weeks, also because of the keloid formation. now it looks like the scar sunked in..

i had 2 RAI, and now waiting for the third RAI. my scar strecthed from my shoulder to my ear, and from the left of my neck to the middle. it is huge. now my entire left neck and my left shouder in numb. Even after 15 monhts, i still have got my senses back.

Phyllis

miladyx
Posts: 85
Joined: May 2009

were your first two RAIs successful - did they bring your thyroglobulin down? Did your doctors tell you why you are having a third one?

Phyllis900's picture
Phyllis900
Posts: 21
Joined: May 2009

My endo did not say whether the RAI is successful. She told me right before the first RAI that i needed 3 because the area of invovlement is too big. The first 2 RAI brought the thyroglubin level down, but still not low enough. i have been seeing her every 2 months, and everytime i needed 10 tubes of blood drawn and a ultrasound of my thyroid.

Phyllis900's picture
Phyllis900
Posts: 21
Joined: May 2009

By the way, i am 26 years old... :)

miladyx
Posts: 85
Joined: May 2009

...are your RAI doses?

Phyllis900's picture
Phyllis900
Posts: 21
Joined: May 2009

The first dose is 150 and the second one is 100. i was staying in the hospital for both of the treatment. the reduced the dosage because the first time i have strong side effects. i was throwing up in the first 9 hours after swallowing the pill. the endo was worried that i might throw up again so she just lower the second dose.
The nurses in the hospital told me that, i am the only patient satying in the hospital for the treatment, and nobody use the (lead covered room) througout the year.by the way, i was staying there 3 day per treatment...:)

jatkisson
Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 2010

I had my thryoid removed in August of 2009 along with 18 lymph nodes. All 18 had it. I had my radioactive iodine in November 2009 and in April of this year I will have my scan and they will check my TG count. I have papillary.

I understand your depression, I cry often when I'm by myslef. The crying actually helps me though. I have a rather small scar maybe about 2 1/2 inches. But, I catch people looking at it all the time. No one that doesn't know me personally has asked me about my scar. My scar has made me insecure. I always worry that I may have cancer somewhere else. I have great support from my husband and my family. I have a friend right now whoe has breast cancer and she has had to endure so much more then me that I feel like I should have nothing to complain about. I still worry, because cancer is cancer no matter what type. I agree that your scar will be hope for your future patients. It will be something positive rather then negative. Maybe some kind of couseling may help with your depession. Talking with people in the same boat you are can help, I know talking to you right now is making me feel better.

I am numb where my scar but it does hurt depending how I sleep. I even think my throat in general is more sensitive.

I hope you feel better or are already feeling better now.

Josette

jatkisson
Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 2010

I had my thryoid removed in August of 2009 along with 18 lymph nodes. All 18 had it. I had my radioactive iodine in November 2009 and in April of this year I will have my scan and they will check my TG count. I have papillary.

I understand your depression, I cry often when I'm by myslef. The crying actually helps me though. I have a rather small scar maybe about 2 1/2 inches. But, I catch people looking at it all the time. No one that doesn't know me personally has asked me about my scar. My scar has made me insecure. I always worry that I may have cancer somewhere else. I have great support from my husband and my family. I have a friend right now whoe has breast cancer and she has had to endure so much more then me that I feel like I should have nothing to complain about. I still worry, because cancer is cancer no matter what type. I agree that your scar will be hope for your future patients. It will be something positive rather then negative. Maybe some kind of couseling may help with your depession. Talking with people in the same boat you are can help, I know talking to you right now is making me feel better.

I am numb where my scar but it does hurt depending how I sleep. I even think my throat in general is more sensitive.

I hope you feel better or are already feeling better now.

Josette

cathy ma
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2010

Hello, I cant believe I found a male, young adult with the same cancer my son 18 years old!
He will be in surgery on 4/20 to remove thyroid, and right side lymph nodes, and more on left side after 3 months. We are so nervous! He also is already worried about scaring and how much pain he will have, also had to leave his job. The surgeon didnt say much about side nek scars.. Please let me know of any big questions i should ask. I would appreciate it.Thank you. Nervous and depressed in VT

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

I had TT w/lymph node removal from right side.
My scar was pretty ugly, but that was also while I was still in the hospital. A lot of it ended up being some dried blood and swelling.

Trust me when I say that it ends up looking better w/time.

For me, the surgery was a piece of cake compared to not being on thyroid med afterwards for 6 weeks and then RAI w/ablation.

The biggest thing is to use sunscreen on it, once it heals.
I had a little problem w/my right arm for awhile afterwards. I had a hard time lifting it very high.
I saw a physical therapist for a little bit to made sure I did the exercises properly. I have no problem w/my arm now.
The only thing I have a problem with is that my throat will get sore/hoarse quite a bit. I've already had my tonsils out so I am pretty sure it is still the effects of surgery/radiation...even after 1 1/2 years.
Fortunately the only singing I do is in church or the car because I can't hold a tune whatsoever.
I feel bad for the people who like to sing.
Hope this helps.

cathy ma
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2010

MLB, what is radition with ablation? After surgery, why no thyroid meds? So new, with my sons cancer, found out 4 weeks ago. Thanks for the info

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

When I found out I had thyroid cancer, they scheduled me for a total thyroidectomy (TT) with lymph node removal. They already knew it was in all my thyroid and lymph nodes before surgery.

After you have surgery you have to go thru radiation to kill off any remaining cells and thyroid tissue that is left after surgery.
You can't be on thyroid meds until after your surgery because you have to be depleted of the hormone so the radioactive med will be taken up by any remaining cancer cells or thyroid tissue. (They don't even want you to have any good thyroid tissue in your body.)

Radiation is 6 weeks after surgery and unfortunately not very fun to go thru. Thyroid hormone is what stabalizes your metabolism. So, if you are loosing thryoid hormone as the 6 weeks goes along, you will have symptoms of hypothyroidism.

At the end of 6 weeks your son will have to take a high dose of radioactive iodine (RAI) to kill things off. I was nauseated during that week (they give you meds to help) and around my eyes got real puffy.

After that 5-7 days you can then be put on thyroid medicine.

The process of radiation is called ablation...killing off cancer cells.

What you would want to do is go to a thyroid cancer website and look for symptoms of what your son might experience after surgery while waiting to go on thyroid meds.
A lot of people talk about it on this site and everybody is different, but for me it was a very exhausing difficult time that I don't want to go thru again.cath

cathy ma
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2010

Thank you so much, is rai in pill form? and i been hearing about isolation? what is that all about. My son is only 18, his friends are so important to him and very supported, do they need to stay away? Surgery on 4/20, plus lymph node removeal on r side, then 3 months later, lymph node removal on left. Iam so sad, because thyroid blood test have all been fine over the years, he had no symptons ever!Thyroid working fine, now who knows, afraid he wont want to do all this follow up, stubborn teen!! cathy

cathy ma
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2010

thank you so very much for the reply, i will check out the web site. Cathy Very helpful

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

The reason for isolation is because you could give someone the radiation. You can't even have little children sit on your lap for a short time because the radiation accumulates in the bladder.

It is for 5-7 days when you take the high dose of radiation. Like I said earlier, I didn't feel well during that time so I didn't care that I couldn't go someplace to be around people.
Plus as long as you are 5 feet away from people they can still be in the house so it wouldn't like being alone the whole time.

Also, if you want more information on the radiation, call the hospital where your son will go and get the pill and ask for the nuclear med department. The nurses and staff to ask specifics. I got something in the mail from them explaining things.
When I took mine, they had the RAI in a capsule, that capsule was in a test tube and the test tube was in what looked like an iron jar. She took the test tube out and I had to swallow the capsule w/out putting it in my hand.

Queenvwr
Posts: 4
Joined: Jul 2010

MLG, I am new here to this site and have some questions I am hoping you can answer. I had all of my thyroid taken out as well as 11 nodes. All cancerous. I am going through the T131 right now. SUCKS! I will agree that being hypothyroid has been worse for me than the surgery for sure.
I am SUPER puffy! My eyes, my neck, my face....also my eyeballs seem to have shrunk? Does that make sense? There is what looked like eye buggers for lack of a better descricption in my eyes and when I went to wipe them away I saw that is is actually to lining of my eyeballs and it appears to be loose and flappy?
Did you have this happen to you? And the puffys? I have iced, I obviously have not had salt....not sure how long this all lasts and what to do to try and speed the process up. :(
I just want this all behind me now. I am exhausted and angry and want to get back to the old me. I am shooting for the positive but everytime I look in the mirror it hits again cause I dont look like myself AT ALL.
Thanks

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

Yes, the puffiness can happen.
When I was going hypo, those 6 weeks, I was a CNA at a hospital and couldn't even work 4 hrs. I paid for it the next day.
The muscle fatigue and pain was awful. I didn't sleep a lot, just ached to the bone and when I would get up to even wash dishes, I got extremely fatigued.
And of course, you know that it gets worse as the days go on.
My eye/face puffiness didn't come until I got the radiation pill(150)
I got nauseated even though on nausea meds. Had to call dr on 3rd day and get a different med. (Should have done it earlier)
About the 3rd or 4th day I woke up and wondered what looked different w/my face. My mom thought I had been crying because my eyes were puffed up. (Of course, that did happen too.)
Once that week was done and I started my meds it went away.
I also had extremely dry mouth and certain things tasted metalic. (while on radiation)
That dry mouth lasted awhile and was glad it wasn't permanent.
One thing I learned afterward was that a person could have dental problems due to radiation. If I have to go thru it again, I will talk to my dentist to talk about any preventative things I might do.

I don't know if the puffiness is actually due to being hypo or radiation. I would think about going to an eye dr about the loose/flappiness about your eyes.

How many weeks are you into hypo? or have you already had your radiation?
We'll get through this "good cancer".
Michelle

Queenvwr
Posts: 4
Joined: Jul 2010

My muscles do ache for sure...the fatigue is what gets me the most. I was a very strong woman, maybe not in the best of shape :)( but strong non the less and now I feel like mush. My puffiness started before radiation I guess. My hubby just corrected me. I thought it was just since I took it but he says I have been complaining about it for about 2 weeks now. I had radition ( 150) on monday ( 26th)....I was 19 days hypo and when they tested me on the 20th I was at a 125?? Still not sure what it all means...just know that I want my life back!
I was given permission to start my meds again the same day as radiation so I am on my 4th day with that now. No change in the puffiness though.
I went through the extreme dry mouth...that was horrible! It is getting better each day now. I asked the DR. about it and they said they were not sure what caused it. ? Everything tastes terrible and so Idont eat much and yet I have gained about 7 lbs in the last 3 weeks.
The eye thing bothers me. I have another scan on the 5th and I am going to ask again about my eyeballs.
You didnt say how your appt went? I hope you are ok and all is clean.
Thank you so much for responding! It feels great to have someone to talk to who knows what I am going through.
Vicki

MLG
Posts: 52
Joined: Mar 2010

I posted about my appt. under another post...new papillary cancer

It is something how everyone is different. I was hypo for 6 full weeks. Did I understand that you were only 19 days and then radiation.

Plus, I couldn't go on my meds until after radiation and body scan. 5-7 days after taking radiation pill.

I read under another post that the drs need to be careful and not let you get too far hypo...never heard of that from my dr and he didn't do any bloodwork during that time I was going hypo.

I was like you, not an athlete but felt strong and the hypo thing is something you can't explain to anyone.
If you have any other questions feel free to ask.
Michelle

Lin3850
Posts: 4
Joined: Aug 2011

Dear Tim:

I read your story. I had thyroid cancer this past December. I have a huge scar also. I thought it would bother me, but relax it's just the neck area not your face. You are great looking and who cares if you have a scar on your neck. It's not on your face!
You sound like you have so much going for you with school. The comments made are by rude individuals. I would just comment that they are
Very lucky they do not have a problem with their thyroid. That shuts them up very fast.
The feelings are normal, but speak with your doctor about that also. My scar is large but I feel thankful to be here. When I felt down, I thought of someone much worse than me, then I felt great. Now I do not pity me. I wear low cut shirts again and make believe the scar isnot even there.
I have no problem telling everyone I had thyroid surgery.
Ignore tactless people who say horrible things.
I could care less of the scar. I am cute and sweet and the scar is just an added feature. Think of the scar as that. You are good looking.
Stop the steroid injections. Those are the worst and probably bothering your feeling numb. Talk to your physician. If you are doing that because of the scar only. Stop.
Go out with your friends have a blast. Stop worrying about this scar. ENJOY life at your age. I have two sons your age, and I would give them the same advise.
BUILD THAT CONFIDENCE UP. YOU ARE GREAT LOOKING WITH A WONDERFUL SMILE? GET A DATE! GO OUT AND LIVE EACH MOMENT of every day. don't waste anymore time.
You are what you are "inside". And that scar is a sign of strength by you. Embrace life and fun. Call your friends and tell them, it's about time to get out and have fun again that you are ready. You will feel so great when you do this..do not let a scar stop you from enjoying things. I want to hear back you went out.
Put on that fantastic smile and good looking face with personality I am sure to match, and go out with your friends, have some dates get out!
Let me know how you are doing.
Linda Hudson
If you are on facebook, let me know what your name is to say hello and check on you.

Lin3850
Posts: 4
Joined: Aug 2011

Dear Tim:

I read your story. I had thyroid cancer this past December. I have a huge scar also. I thought it would bother me, but relax it's just the neck area not your face. You are great looking and who cares if you have a scar on your neck. It's not on your face!
You sound like you have so much going for you with school. The comments made are by rude individuals. I would just comment that they are
Very lucky they do not have a problem with their thyroid. That shuts them up very fast.
The feelings are normal, but speak with your doctor about that also. My scar is large but I feel thankful to be here. When I felt down, I thought of someone much worse than me, then I felt great. Now I do not pity me. I wear low cut shirts again and make believe the scar isnot even there.
I have no problem telling everyone I had thyroid surgery.
Ignore tactless people who say horrible things.
I could care less of the scar. I am cute and sweet and the scar is just an added feature. Think of the scar as that. You are good looking.
Stop the steroid injections. Those are the worst and probably bothering your feeling numb. Talk to your physician. If you are doing that because of the scar only. Stop.
Go out with your friends have a blast. Stop worrying about this scar. ENJOY life at your age. I have two sons your age, and I would give them the same advise.
BUILD THAT CONFIDENCE UP. YOU ARE GREAT LOOKING WITH A WONDERFUL SMILE? GET A DATE! GO OUT AND LIVE EACH MOMENT of every day. don't waste anymore time.
You are what you are "inside". And that scar is a sign of strength by you. Embrace life and fun. Call your friends and tell them, it's about time to get out and have fun again that you are ready. You will feel so great when you do this..do not let a scar stop you from enjoying things. I want to hear back you went out.
Put on that fantastic smile and good looking face with personality I am sure to match, and go out with your friends, have some dates get out!
Let me know how you are doing.
Linda Hudson
If you are on facebook, let me know what your name is to say hello and check on you.

Lin3850
Posts: 4
Joined: Aug 2011

Dear Tim:

I read your story. I had thyroid cancer this past December. I have a huge scar also. I thought it would bother me, but relax it's just the neck area not your face. You are great looking and who cares if you have a scar on your neck. It's not on your face!
You sound like you have so much going for you with school. The comments made are by rude individuals. I would just comment that they are
Very lucky they do not have a problem with their thyroid. That shuts them up very fast.
The feelings are normal, but speak with your doctor about that also. My scar is large but I feel thankful to be here. When I felt down, I thought of someone much worse than me, then I felt great. Now I do not pity me. I wear low cut shirts again and make believe the scar isnot even there.
I have no problem telling everyone I had thyroid surgery.
Ignore tactless people who say horrible things.
I could care less of the scar. I am cute and sweet and the scar is just an added feature. Think of the scar as that. You are good looking.
Stop the steroid injections. Those are the worst and probably bothering your feeling numb. Talk to your physician. If you are doing that because of the scar only. Stop.
Go out with your friends have a blast. Stop worrying about this scar. ENJOY life at your age. I have two sons your age, and I would give them the same advise.
BUILD THAT CONFIDENCE UP. YOU ARE GREAT LOOKING WITH A WONDERFUL SMILE? GET A DATE! GO OUT AND LIVE EACH MOMENT of every day. don't waste anymore time.
You are what you are "inside". And that scar is a sign of strength by you. Embrace life and fun. Call your friends and tell them, it's about time to get out and have fun again that you are ready. You will feel so great when you do this..do not let a scar stop you from enjoying things. I want to hear back you went out.
Put on that fantastic smile and good looking face with personality I am sure to match, and go out with your friends, have some dates get out!
Let me know how you are doing.
Linda Hudson
If you are on facebook, let me know what your name is to say hello and check on you.

Lin3850
Posts: 4
Joined: Aug 2011

Dear Tim:

I read your story. I had thyroid cancer this past December. I have a huge scar also. I thought it would bother me, but relax it's just the neck area not your face. You are great looking and who cares if you have a scar on your neck. It's not on your face!
You sound like you have so much going for you with school. The comments made are by rude individuals. I would just comment that they are
Very lucky they do not have a problem with their thyroid. That shuts them up very fast.
The feelings are normal, but speak with your doctor about that also. My scar is large but I feel thankful to be here. When I felt down, I thought of someone much worse than me, then I felt great. Now I do not pity me. I wear low cut shirts again and make believe the scar isnot even there.
I have no problem telling everyone I had thyroid surgery.
Ignore tactless people who say horrible things.
I could care less of the scar. I am cute and sweet and the scar is just an added feature. Think of the scar as that. You are good looking.
Stop the steroid injections. Those are the worst and probably bothering your feeling numb. Talk to your physician. If you are doing that because of the scar only. Stop.
Go out with your friends have a blast. Stop worrying about this scar. ENJOY life at your age. I have two sons your age, and I would give them the same advise.
BUILD THAT CONFIDENCE UP. YOU ARE GREAT LOOKING WITH A WONDERFUL SMILE? GET A DATE! GO OUT AND LIVE EACH MOMENT of every day. don't waste anymore time.
You are what you are "inside". And that scar is a sign of strength by you. Embrace life and fun. Call your friends and tell them, it's about time to get out and have fun again that you are ready. You will feel so great when you do this..do not let a scar stop you from enjoying things. I want to hear back you went out.
Put on that fantastic smile and good looking face with personality I am sure to match, and go out with your friends, have some dates get out!
Let me know how you are doing.
Linda Hudson
If you are on facebook, let me know what your name is to say hello and check on you.

amorriso
Posts: 186
Joined: Oct 2010

Hi there. Linda I just read your post. I too have a scar ear to ear. I do not hide it even though friends have given many lovely scarves to do so with. I wear my hair up if I feel like it. Even though is only been a few months since the last surgery the scar has faded - most people dont notice it. The ones that do usually have the same scar. Its amazing how you have that instant bond with someone - you see the scar and you know exactly what that person has been through.

Tim - I dont know how your doing now - I do hope you are well and enjoying life.

Cheers

Andrea

Fayth
Posts: 2
Joined: Dec 2011

Hi,
I know you posted ages ago but i've only just found this site, thought i'd reply anyway.
Mostly because i've never read of anyone else having a scar like this, mine is ear to ear too and is still thick after 6 years. I went through having people stare at my neck too, but luckily I didn't mind too much. Although i was misdiagnosed for 3 years so my tumours were huge, i suppose got used to people looking, especially whilst at school, because i was diagnosed at 12.

Anyway, I had a total thyroidectomy and biliteral neck dissection so had my lymph nodes out. And even after 6 years my neck is still numb in places and constantly tingles, i can't lift my arms too much either. It is annoying sometimes, but my surgeon says i have so much nerve damage it wont get better.
I went through a phase of being down because my cancer had starting spreading to my lungs and although its inactive they cant get rid of it so i have chest pain and breathlessness. I dont want to go on but i now have lots of issues, my tumour crushed my windpipe so i get pain there, 5 iodine ttreatments have damaged my saliva glands and being in intensive care has given me joint problems.

I really hope that you are ok now, as it is draining and quite a lonely time. Jo

miladyx
Posts: 85
Joined: May 2009

how are you doing now, 6 years after diagnosis? what do your doctors say?

How is your thyroglobulin?

goingforward
Posts: 1
Joined: Dec 2012

I realize by now- nearly 3 years later than your post- Your problem has probably lessened somewhat- the scar healed, and hormones stabilized. HOWEVER, I want to share some ideas that may help even now if depression ever creeps up again- for you or anyone facing thyroid surgery, post surgery and issues. Sometimes growing up is faced with enough normal stress without feeling people are staring at your scar and battling depression.
I bought some guided imagery tapes, by Belleruth Naparstek- the one I bought is - Meditations to Promote Successful Surgery.. which I downloaded into my ipod. Resources for Mind body and spirit. I got mine thru a Canadian distributor, but its from the US. (www.healthjourneys.com)
To heal your body it helps to use your head.. it says. Some nights when you cant sleep and thoughts are running rampant- fear, whatever.. play Affirmations.. Instantly its like a warm mother over your shoulder calming you down and the music lulls me to sleep. There is a section that prepares you for surgery when nerves are the worst, and post surgery- and one CD- strictly for after.. music only. to summon peace whenever you need it- just pop it in your ears and its calming your brain with positive thoughts. In thyroid hormone issues- its hard to remember why you are not feeling happy. For the scar- google Scar Away strips and Scar guard. It works on old scars too. Employ some trendy light statement scarves> shredded jerseys- whatever!..light turtlenecks. Make it your cool look. Remember too- You are a champ. You did the opposite from trying to kill yourself- You EARNED that scar, as a testament to your lifeforce within you. Im NOT your age Tim, if thats what you wanted to hear from, but there is this new thing now. Dear 23 year old self( What I would tell myself at age 23 from the perspective of time) So dear 23 yr old self-Id say- DIG DEEPER. Friends who admire your strength, courage and overcoming are the ones who count in the many happy years ahead. best of luck Tim, Carol from Canada

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