CSN Login
Members Online: 7

Another one of lifes challenges

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Greetings. My name is Mark. I am just starting my journey with Kidney Cancer. I have a 7 cm tumor on my left kidney. I am 48 years old and have always lived a happy, healthy life up to now. I eat healthy; I am in the gym every morning and I run almost every day at lunch. Every year I try to get in at least one triathlon (sprint). When I got hit with something like this at such a young age it was quite a shock.
Two weeks ago I landed myself in the E.R. with an infected appendix. They did a CT scan to verify before cutting me open and found an extra surprise. 2:00 am, I was curled up in the fetal position shaking in pain and my wife sitting next to the gurney shaking in fear, the emergency room dr. drops the news on us like he was telling us I had a cold then walked out never to be seen again.
My appendix is no longer a problem. The Dr. that took it out did an outstanding job and I was back at work full time in 3 days. Never took a single pain killer after surgery.
I had my first Consultation at Sloan Kettering. My Dr. is great. He is running more tests to see how much damage the tumor has caused in hopes to salvage at least some of the organ. Surgery will not be for a couple of weeks to allow my appendix incisions to totally heal.
I’m feeling pretty positive about my situation but am worried about my wife. She is smart and strong and extremely willful. I’ve never seen her look so defeated and scared. Any suggestions as to what I can do to put her mind at ease.

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1356
Joined: Jan 2010

Mark,

I had the same situation when the doctor brought up the big C word. My wife freaked out more than I did. Let her read some of the strong posts by some of the women in our group. Let her know that if she wants to help you she is going to have to get down to earth. Even at 7cm many of our surgeries provide a cure for life. Unless the Cancer has already spread which hopefully at 7cm it has not you shoud not be faced with scary things like chemo and drugs. Just the Surgery which I am unable to sugar coat for you. My surgery was 9 years ago and for the most part my wife got rid of those irrational fears before the surgery. Women, you can't live without them, so make the best of it. They mean well.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 1710
Joined: Oct 2011

Good luck Mark. Our stories are nearly identical. My wife is an extremely tough intelligent woman. She's been a nurse for 35 years. Sickness, death and dying is an every day experience for her. But she is having more difficulty dealing with this than I am. It has to be that our spouses would do anything in the world for us but in this case they are unable to. Put your energy into getting better.

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

This Friday, 11-4, I will be back at Sloan Kettering for some final testing. Blood work and an ultrasound will be done to verify exactly how my kidneys are currently functioning and to get a precise model of the tumor. My Dr. is adamant and pretty optimistic about saving at least part of the kidney. Hearing talk about options and best quality of life 30+ years from now has improved my wife's emotional state considerably and it's good to see her smile again. I'll post the results soon.

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Had my follow-up visit. Started with a blood test, followed by an ultrasound then a review with my Dr. Apparently the tumor is in there pretty deep and there is no hope for saving any portion of the kidney. My opperation is going to be this Wednesday 11-09. I already had my presurgery physical. Things are moving very fast. I'm kind of glad. I want this thing over and done with.

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 1710
Joined: Oct 2011

I can't speak for every one, but, after the cancer diagnosis, I say, dig in and go for it. You're young. tough. And have a family. Makes recovery a good goal. Not to sound ego centric, but now concentrate on yourself, for others. Keep us posted.

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

Hi Mark,

I hope you have a good run today and an even better day on the table tomorrow, you seem to be in great shape mentally and physically which will make recovery a whole lot easier. You should be back to your old self before you know it and this little bump in the road will be a distant memory. Its been almost two years since I "took the cure" and other than a few small battle scars its all but forgotten.

Good luck tomorrow,

Gary

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Just came back from my last run. 70 degrees, shirt of, sun in the face bliss. What a way to leave it off. I'm pumped and ready to do this. My in-laws drove in to town (12 hours) to help out for the next couple of weeks which has had the most positive influence on my wife so far. Everything that can be done has been done. I'm all set to go.

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Just came back from my last run. 70 degrees, shirt of, sun in the face bliss. What a way to leave it off. I'm pumped and ready to do this. My in-laws drove in to town (12 hours) to help out for the next couple of weeks which has had the most positive influence on my wife so far. Everything that can be done has been done. I'm all set to go.

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Just came back from my last run. 70 degrees, shirt of, sun in the face bliss. What a way to leave it off. I'm pumped and ready to do this. My in-laws drove in to town (12 hours) to help out for the next couple of weeks which has had the most positive influence on my wife so far. Everything that can be done has been done. I'm all set to go.

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Just came back from my last run. 70 degrees, shirt of, sun in the face bliss. What a way to leave it off. I'm pumped and ready to do this. My in-laws drove in to town (12 hours) to help out for the next couple of weeks which has had the most positive influence on my wife so far. Everything that can be done has been done. I'm all set to go.

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

What an experience. Everything went like clockwork. From the time I walked through the door to the moment they signed me out, everyone at the center was amazing. My surgery was textbook. I was up and walked my first half mile that evening and the next morning I did a full mile per doctors orders. All I.V. tubes and catheders were removed by noon and I was in the car driving home by 4:00. 34 hours total. I am home and reasonably comfortable. The best place to start the healing process. Feeling very fortunate right now.

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

msacher63,

Good to hear that everything went so well, it is amazing isn't it? Now, don't push too hard for the first couple weeks, get plenty of rest, drink plenty of water, and stick to smaller portions on food until all systems are go, if you know what I mean. You'll be back pounding the pavement before you know it.

Keep us in the loop,

Gary

Subscribe with RSS
About Cancer Society

The content on this site is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition. Use of this online service is subject to the disclaimer and the terms and conditions.

Copyright 2000-2014 © Cancer Survivors Network