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3" mass in kidney.

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

CT scan reviled 3" mass in kidney. Urologist this coming Thursday. Am still in shock>Don't really know all the questions I need and want to ask.
All this started from pre-surgical xrays before sinus surgery that after two CT found mass on kidney. Family Doctor said I would most probably loose the kidney.
My daughter said that it was a good thing I decided to have sinus surgery after 60 years.....

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1658
Joined: Jan 2010

Dear Bob,

Most of us on this board were diagnosed with RCC by accident and then we are told that we have to have surgery right out of the gate. Not fun. Mine was a littte over 9 years ago. Nearly all of our tumors are measured in cm not inches. If yours is in fact 3 cm. instaed of 3 inches it is relatively small and the survival rate approaches 100%. Even at 3 inches, if it has not spread the prognosis is very good. You will find a lot of help on this board getting thru the surgery and then the recovery. First help us out a little by double checking the size of the tumor.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

garym's picture
garym
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Robert,

There is no way to sugar coat what you are feeling and going through right now but you have some good things in your favor. Even if your tumor is 3" that roughly equals 7.5 cm and there are many people here leading "normal" lives after surgery for much larger tumors. The key with RCC is early detection (usually by accident) and it appears that you have this on your side. Mine was 5.1 cm and the Dr. said it had been with me for at least 2 years, it was found in the ER following an accident. RCC is generally slow growing, silent, and curable through surgery when caught early, the fact that yours was found when looking for something else is a very positive sign for you. As you follow the threads on this board you will learn that most of us are here for that reason. Ask your Doc's about open vs. laproscopic procedures and whether a partial nephrectomy is an option. Things are probably going to happen pretty fast and the more informed you are the more comfortable you can be with your situation/decisions. Keep us informed and we'll help you through it.

Good luck and God speed,

Gary

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Gary,
Until this Thursday I'm kinda sorta in the dark and not knowing what to expect.

Doug

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Icemantoo

The Dr. more than likely gave the cm size but as we talked he said 3" to put it in terms I understand. Whats so scary is I lost both parents to lung cancer. Mother in 1984 and Father just this past January. And a sister who is a breast cancer survivor.

Doug

Vagusto's picture
Vagusto
Posts: 86
Joined: Aug 2011

Hi Doug

My kidney cancer was found on accident also. I finally had enough with stomach aches coming from the gallbladder area. I went for an ultrasound to confirm. Wondered why the technician was spending soooooo much time on my left side. They found a mass the size of my fist, about the size of my kidney. About three weeks later, what seemed to be an eternity, they took my kidney and the tumor. The recovery was no fun at all!! I had a open radical, lovely 8 inch cut on my tummy. I would say it took about a year before I felt almost back to normal. My Father passed away from kidney cancer 5 years ago. My Grandfather passed away from lung cancer. There is nothing like hearing those words...you have cancer. I try to stay super busy so that it doesn't consume my mind. Some days it works, some it doesn't. We're here to support you.
Take Care
Valerie

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thanks Valerie

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 277
Joined: Oct 2010

Hi Doug,

I had a radical open nephrectomy one year ago this week of my left kidney. It was around 9cm. My incision was about 13 inches like an upside down hook under my diaphragm and down my left side due to location of the tumor.

They removed my kidney and adrenal gland. I spent six days in the hospital. I used an epidural for pain management while in the hospital. It is a very painful surgery. They usually will have you up walking the next day which hurts but aids the healing process.

My advice : eat SMALL portions, take a stool softener, sleep in a recliner, on a sofa or use a wedge in bed, take your pain meds, rest, don't know push yourself and make copies of all your records (keep copies), take notes, don't rush, and ask a lot of questions.

If caught early, removing your kidney with follow up scans after is all you may need. Wishing you all the best.

Rae

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thanks Rae

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

Nice to meet you - although would have been better had this not been a kidney cancer site!
BUT that being said. You'll get through this. The surgery is no picnic but most definitely survivable and you'll find that the time really flies by! You'll have bad days and then just lay low and rest - walking is the best thing you can do for yourself as you recover - just from one end of your house to the other for the first few days - then you can gradually tackle your driveway and expand further as your strength returns. It is painful but not intolerable. I had an open radical including removal of adrenal gland - tumor was 6.5 cm - and I got off the prescription pain meds within the first week out of the hospital. They gave me a prescription for 'prescription strength' ibuprofin and that worked pretty well.

Bottom line, RCC sucks! No sugar-coating it. And yes, 99.9% of the time, found by accident while looking for something else. You're not alone - all of us here are willing to listen no matter what your mood. Keep posting here - we'll be watching and holding you up in our thoughts and prayers.

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

I go to the urologist tomorrow to find out what is going on.

KatfromFlorida's picture
KatfromFlorida
Posts: 66
Joined: Aug 2011

Hi Doug:

I am beginning to believe that we are led to this place by our guardian angels. My surgery was 4 weeks ago and my cancer was also found by accident when I went to the doctor for some other reason.
This is the place if you have questions or if your looking for support as the folks here are all here for the same or similar reasons and an amazing group of people :)
My surgeon used the davinci robot to remove my 6cm tumor and some additonal tissue but I was able to keep most of my right kidney. Due to your tumor location, size etc this might be something you want to check into with your urologist. Some folks do not have a choice about retaining the entire kidney as the cancer is in control of that, however, if you prefer to try to keep the healthy portion of the organ a partial is your best option. ( If you live in an area where you have access to a surgeon that does this kind of surgery that is)
Also too you must consider whether or not your comfortable with a partial removal as some folks decide to have the entire kidney removed in hopes of no recurrances in the future. Either way the surgery isn't fun and recovery takes time. Good luck with your meeting tomorrow and please keep us posted :) Prayers and much love being sent your way.

My Best
Kat

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thank you, Kat

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Had my appointment with Dr Chan (urologist) today. Confirmed the mass in my left kidney is 6.7 cm and kidney will have to come out.Believes 1st stage cancer. Will schedule the surgery and call me tomorrow or Monday to confirm date.
Have someone telling me not to let Dr remove kidney completely. My family doctor and urologist both recommend complete removal. Thought I knew what to do but not sure now. Have to make a decision very soon. Dr. does not want too do a biopsy. At this point we are making decision entirely from the CT scan. I just want it gone!!!

Doug

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1658
Joined: Jan 2010

Doug,

The doctor has to make a decision on whether to try a partial which has to do with the size and location of the tumor. You may want to get a second opinion. As for a biopsy they are uncommon as the doctor can pretty much tell it is RCC from the CT scan. The good news is that in many cases the surgery takes care of the RCC for life although you are given further tests for a number of years. I wish I could sugar coat the surgery, but I can not.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Iceman,

Thanks for the quick reply. After doing more research tonight, after my friends comments to me, and after my wife and I setting and talking I have decided to proceed as planed. I feel I can make it with one kidney and with the tumor still at stage 1, I just want it to hopefully be gone. My urologist explained that I will need at least 4 to 6 weeks of down time, but i am determined to be strong and give this all I've got.

I thank you for the support you have already given me and I'm sure I'll need more from everyone.

Doug

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

It really does depend on the size and location of the tumor. And sometimes the doctor can change the game plan half way through surgery, just depending on what looks like might be best for your particular situation. It's all good, since it is about a 95% cure rate. Total nephrectomies are usually done laproscopically; partials are usually open surgeries. It's easier, faster to recover from laproscopic, but open means you probably got to keep half your kidney. Anything kidney-sparing is good, but you can live a perfectly normal life on one kidney.

Do you have a surgery date yet?

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Should find out by Monday

Doug

ams123
Posts: 71
Joined: Aug 2011

My surgeon was unsure whether or not he could do a partial, he said he wouldn't know until he was in there. I had robotic laparoscopic, and I know lots of people who have had partials done laparoscopically. When I woke up I found out that the surgeon was able to do the partial. It took him 28 minutes, and the cut off time for stopping blood flow to the kidney is 30 minutes, so I am very grateful that he attempted this and succeeded. However, if he needed to take that whole kidney that would have been fine, as people can live normally with one kidney.

My CT scan wasn't clear enough for the surgeon to see the exact location of the tumor in relation to the artery and vein, so he did an MRI. Maybe you can suggest that to your surgeon so he can get a better idea. Just a thought.

Linda

KatfromFlorida's picture
KatfromFlorida
Posts: 66
Joined: Aug 2011

Hi Doug:

I know what you mean about wanting it gone but maybe getting a second opinion isn't a bad idea? My physician and the first kidney doctor I went to wanted to remove my entire kidney.... It was explained to me by both of them that they were old school so I asked about a partial and was referred to a urologist that did partials. Some doctors don't do the new davinci surgery. I am not someone who wants to willingly give up my organs if its not necessary, made that mistake when I had a complete hysterectomy years ago. One of those if I had it to do over things.... Either way we are here for you , keep your chin up and remember your friends are here if you need us ..... Prayers and much love
Kat

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 277
Joined: Oct 2010

Are you in Michigan by chance?

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

No, Georgia

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

The urologist will be doing a laproscopic nephrectomy on October the 25th at Rockdale Medical center. I will have to stay in the hospital a minimum of one day, with four to six weeks recovery at home.

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1658
Joined: Jan 2010

Doug,

Sounds like what they told me going in. You are not going to feel like going home after only 1 day. Once you get home you will be on the couch for 7 to 10 days and then you may feel like doing stuff for an hour or 2 a day.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

garym's picture
garym
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Doug,

Pre-op mental state and physical condition plays a big role in the recovery from this procedure. If you already watch what you eat and exercise regularly then concentrate even more on it the next two weeks, it helps keep the inner demons at bay. If you don't have a diet and exercise program then I encourage you to start one now, anything you can do between now and surgery will pay dividends post op. Even taking a brisk walk daily will be worth it in the end. A low sodium and low protein diet will help your remaining kidney, this is a good time to experiment with that as well.

The sooner you are on your feet following surgery the sooner you will be able to go home so my advice is start preparing for that today. That first post-op walk can be a challenge because of all the extra tubes and bags and such that have to go with you but don't let that stop you, its the quickest way home. Once you get home, start slow and build gradually, you'll be back to your old self before you know it.

Okay, enough preaching, we're here if you need us.

Good luck and God speed,

Gary

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Yesterday was told I would be in hospital 2 to3 days.

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Yesterday was told I would be in hospital 2 to 3 days.

neenee3
Posts: 28
Joined: Oct 2011

I to have just been diagnosed with kidney cancer. I just found out on September 30th. I had blood in my urine on two different occasions. The first time I saw it I questioned it, the second time a week later, I got right into the doctor, have not had it since. Had a CT done and that's how mine was found. Mine is 8cm and is between a stage 2 and 3. I have surgery scheduled here on the November 1st but went down to UCLA for a second opinion. I will be scheduled this week for the surgery down there. Once I have it scheduled down there I will cancel the surgery here. I also meet with an Oncologist who will treat me if needed. He ordered an MRI of my brain, chest CT, and a bone scan to check for cancer elsewhere. I've already had the abdominal CT, EKG and chest X-ray. I am still walking around dazed by this whole thing. I've never had any kind of health issue. Take no medication of any kind. I'm only 53! My husband and I have been on an emotional roller coaster but this forum has been such a blessing! Take care and know you're not ALONE!!! My prayers are with you and yours.

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

I thank all for your encouraging words. I'm doing my best to keep a positive outlook on the surgery and recovery. And knowingly need everyone's support during that time. Thanks again.

ripper's picture
ripper
Posts: 28
Joined: Oct 2011

Doug,

What really helped me when I found out in the middle of May that 2 weeks later, I was going in for surgery was to stay busy. I did yard work everyday possible, fixed the loose hinges on doors, change furnace filters, etc... I pretty much went from room to room and looked for at least 1 thing in each room to attend to. Boy was I sure glad I did as I sat around and took it easy for the next 5 weeks after surgery. It did 2 things for me. It kept my mind off the pending surgery and it allowed me to have some peace of mind while on the mend. Food for thought. Ripper

ripper's picture
ripper
Posts: 28
Joined: Oct 2011

Doug,

What really helped me when I found out in the middle of May that 2 weeks later, I was going in for surgery was to stay busy. I did yard work everyday possible, fixed the loose hinges on doors, change furnace filters, etc... I pretty much went from room to room and looked for at least 1 thing in each room to attend to. Boy was I sure glad I did as I sat around and took it easy for the next 5 weeks after surgery. It did 2 things for me. It kept my mind off the pending surgery and it allowed me to have some peace of mind while on the mend. Food for thought. Riper

ripper's picture
ripper
Posts: 28
Joined: Oct 2011

Doug,

What really helped me when I found out in the middle of May that 2 weeks later, I was going in for surgery was to stay busy. I did yard work everyday possible, fixed the loose hinges on doors, change furnace filters, etc... I pretty much went from room to room and looked for at least 1 thing in each room to attend to. Boy was I sure glad I did as I sat around and took it easy for the next 5 weeks after surgery. It did 2 things for me. It kept my mind off the pending surgery and it allowed me to have some peace of mind while on the mend. Food for thought. Ripper

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thanks ripper.

That't exactly what I've been doing for the past few days. I have a small hobby farm, have been cutting wood and splitting for fire wood, repairing fences and tending to our llamas. Also been working on honey-do list. Plus I'm trying too walk at least a mile every day, really something I should have already been doing.

Again Thanks,
Doug

Another1bites back
Posts: 14
Joined: Oct 2011

CT lungs and bladder scopped in a couple hours! Follow up with doc a couple hours later! Then I will know where I stand. Should get a surgery date soon. How are you doing now????

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Had my pre-lab-work visit with urologist and hospital yesterday. Still scheduled for surgery next Tuesday the 25th,at Rockdale Medical Center in Conyers Ga.

Visited with my family doctor of 25 years this past Saturday for about an hour. We talked medical topics for 30 minutes. Then talked personal the rest of the time. He said something that really stuck home with me. (He is also a 10 year cancer survivor.) Be where your suppose be, do what your suppose to do and let God take care of doing the healing. So for now that's what I am going to do my best to do. Miracles still happen everyday. Live everyday as if it is a gift.

Doug

Minnesota Girl's picture
Minnesota Girl
Posts: 115
Joined: Jul 2011

Good luck on your surgery, Doug. I'm sure you'll do great - just be patient with recovery. I had a hand-assisted laprascopy July 6 and am finally, nearly 100%! :)

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thank you Minnesota Girl, Not looking forward to the pain but anxious to get it over with.

Doug

ams123
Posts: 71
Joined: Aug 2011

Just wanted to wish you the best with your surgery on Tuesday, Doug. I'm sure everything will go fine, and after the first couple of days you'll be on your way to a complete recovery.

Linda

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thank You! Doug

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Surgery 3 days away, have been staying busy and trying to get house in order. Fire wood for wood heater cut and stacked on front porch for wife in case it turns cold. Installed a hand shower-head in shower, already had a shower stool. Moved electric powered recliner out of storage room into bedroom. Going to spend tomorrow making needed repairs at the veterinary clinic were I work part-time. Monday I plan on spending with my two you grand-boys since I probably won't be able to play with them for a little while. Then the big day... Thanks everyone for your advice, words of encouragement and prayers. God willing I'll be fine!!!

Doug

garym's picture
garym
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Doug,

Tomorrow is a big day but it will be over with and you will be on your way to being "normal" again before you know it. I was diagnosed on the 25th two years ago so we have that date in common, it is hard to believe how fast the time has passed. Add my thoughts and prayers to those that support you.

Gary

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Thank you Gary for the encouragement. Really believe everything will turn out good, but the unknown caused me not to sleep well last night. Hope to get better rest tonight. Hopefully surgery will be early on the morning. Hospital let me know to be at hospital at 6:30 in the morning. Will let everyone know when I return home.

Doug

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 277
Joined: Oct 2010

Prayers are with you tomorrow.
Rae

Vagusto's picture
Vagusto
Posts: 86
Joined: Aug 2011

Doug
Thinking of you and wishing you a great outcome! Take care of yourself, rest, and don't over eat at one time.
Valerie

braswelm's picture
braswelm
Posts: 41
Joined: Oct 2011

Doug, Confident that all went well for you this morning.
Got my diagnosis last week, 7.5-8.0 cm mass on left kidney.
Scheduled for laparascopic removal of kidney next month. (Apprently the surgeon is very busy).
As I have read through the many posts, they all sound similar to my situation. A routine physical found blood in my urine, further tests revealed the tumor. Shocked is a mild description of how I felt, as there had only been one instance of cancer in my family. But as I struggle with the emotional side of things, especially waiting weeks for surgery, I really feel positive about my outcome, and try to keep that positive outlook overall.
I also believe that prayer works, and as was mentioned in one of your posts, " Be where your suppose be, do what your suppose to do and let God take care of doing the healing."
This is an opportunity for us, to share with others as we go through this, and after we heal, to help others understand what to expect.
Let us know how you are doing...
Mike

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 277
Joined: Oct 2010

Mike,

Welcome to the "club" though we are always sorry to have new members. Keep reading and keep posting. There is a wealth of info and wonderful, special people here.
Rae

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Surgery went well. Removed left kidney. Still in hospital. Could not hold anything down on stomach. Finally figured out it was one of the pain meds. Doing better now, just very sore. Hope to go home Friday or Saturday. Thanks for all of your support and
Doug

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Surgery went well. Removed left kidney. Still in hospital. Could not hold anything down on stomach. Finally figured out it was one of the pain meds. Doing better now, just very sore. Hope to go home Friday or Saturday. Thanks for all of your support and
Doug

garym's picture
garym
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Doug,

Good to hear from you so soon, and happy that everything is going so well. It won't be long before you are back to your old self and wondering what all the fuss was about. Take it slow and easy for the first couple weeks and keep us posted on your progress.

Best wishes,

Gary

Another1bites back
Posts: 14
Joined: Oct 2011

Im next ...Surgery is 2 Nov 1030am. Man this was fast Diagnosed til now not quite 4 weeks! Mine Stage 4 ...But its only a number...RIGHT! I will be doing the Interluekin 2 treatment as well as I have some lung issues that need to be addressed with this.This wil take place AFTER I heal from surgery. Continue to recoup and enjoy your NEW Begining!

Vagusto's picture
Vagusto
Posts: 86
Joined: Aug 2011

Doug
Glad to hear the surgery is behind you. Take it slow when you get home, every day
will get better.
Valerie

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