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I am new here and thank you all who posting here

barbarbei
Posts: 9
Joined: Sep 2011

I am glad I found this place. Although I am not the one who got it, but my boyfriend will go through surgery in one week. The Dr didn't say what it is, and he has been monitoring it for 7 years, and no symptom at all. But since it started growing recently, they suggest to remove it. We knew it is coming 3 months ago, but just last week the Dr said there is 80% chance that it is cancer. And that is a big shock for me. I don't know how does my boyfriend feel, he seems calm in front of me. And I can't show him any sadness that I have. I can only cry when I am alone. He planned to go back to work 4 weeks after。 But I saw people all talking about 3 months recovery.
Thank you all who posting on here, and that really give me a lot of information, and hope.

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1510
Joined: Jan 2010

Barbarbei,

Being told that you might have Cancer and the odds are 80% sure are scary words. I was sure scared when I was told that 9 years ago and I think they said 90%. Now lets get back down to earth. The doctors were monitoring "it" "the little buggar" or "what have you" for 7 years. Sounds to me that he had a cyst or complex cyst on his kidney and it grew into what sounds like a tumor. THe fact that they monitored it for 7 years and chose not to take it out sounds like until recently it did not pose a problem. Now lets talk about facts. Although Kidney Cancer is serious stuff, if caught early it is usually cured by surgery. The 80 and 90% go with the territory and once you have the surgery you can usually say that you had Cancer, not that you have it, so please do not get hung up on what first are scary words. As far as going back to work after the surgery if he is young and his job does not involve physical labor 4 weeks is possible. Just dont try and do what one poster did 3 months after surgery, go on a roller coaster. Wait until next summer for that.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

barbarbei
Posts: 9
Joined: Sep 2011

Thanks Icemantoo. I believe it is curable in the early stage, and of course we need to keep monitoring afterwards. All we need now is be positive and have hope.

best regards

barbarbei

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Your boyfriend's story sounds like mine. We first saw the spots on my kidney at least 4 years ago, but they were too small to characterize. We didn't worry about them until one started to grow. That's when we knew it was probably cancerous and I had it taken out.

How quickly your boyfriend returns to work depends on what type of surgery he has. If he has laproscopic surgery, he may be back very soon. If he has open surgery, it will be a few weeks. I had open surgery, and I think I did go back to the office for a few hours at about week 3 after surgery. But I just sat in front of the computer for 2-3 hours and went home. Anything more demanding would not have been possible. He should listen to his body and respond accordingly. Don't push it, or he could end up doing more harm than good.

It's so hard to be a care-giver; I sympathize with your position. You feel like you have to be "up" and strong when around him, when really you're scared to death and have more questions than answers! And exhausted. Did I mention the emotional and physical exhaustion?

Here's what I would do if I were you, (and I am since I'm walking a friend down this same road right now, almost 3 months after my own surgery). Arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible so that you can fully participate in conversations with his doctors.

At the hospital, he'll sleep plenty, but you can be sure he can always reach his ice chips and cup of water. Magazines are better than books because books take too much focus and concentration that he won't have. Bring non-slip slippers so that he can walk safely up and down the hall. See if the hospital floor keeps a stash of popsickles (most do because so many patients are on clear liquids while there), even if he's not on a clear liquid diet, it's a nice treat. If he's not controlling his own pain pump, remind the nurses when he needs another pain injection or pill. Help him get up to wash his face and brush his teeth (he'll feel better). Bring very loose waisted pants for the trip home. This is definitely a time for "fat pants." (Do men keep fat pants like women do?) : )

At home, the couch or recliner is likely to be much more comfortable than the bed, though I prefered being in different places throughout the day. He'll sleep and wake in spurts. You do not have to get up with him. You need to sleep normally since you won't get the opportunity to sleep during the day. Keep a tv tray nearby so that he can reach whatever he may need: water, remote, magazine, pain meds etc. Keep a notebook in which you write down what time he takes his pain med so that you can space them out equally. It's easy to forget when you took, or if you took, your med. Write it down, every time. Take him for trips out of the house so that he doesn't get cabin fever. A quick drive to the pharmacy or to his favorite food, just nothing more than 5 minutes away.

And don't forget to make time for you. Treat yourself a bit as well. Give yourself a hug for taking on this very stressful but loving deed.

barbarbei
Posts: 9
Joined: Sep 2011

Hi Jamie1.3cm, thanks a lot for the excellent tips. I compsoed those tips into a list so we can have it handy. He will go under open surgery, and the Dr. will decide it is going to be a partial or the whole kidney needs to be removed. So I guess the pain medicine is very much needed.

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