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Radical Open Naphrectomy

Shel43
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2012

Just found out today that I need my right kidney completely removed-- 10cm tumor and not sure yet if it is cancerous..
Glad to see others on this site sharing information leading up to and including surgery-

tom_in_VT
Posts: 25
Joined: Jan 2012

Shel43

I wish you had come to this forum with better news, be it as it may, welcome. Everyone here wants only the best for you. 5 weeks ago today I lost 1/3 of my right kidney, I was all nerved up b/4 my day (12/20). When the day came I was amazingly relaxed. My faith went to the good hands of my surgeon, who is a fantastic guy, and all the support staff at the hospital. Please know the advances in medicine in past couple of decades bodes well for all of us. You will be sore for a short time after surgery but, it will pass in time.

Be good, keep your chin up - angels are looking after you!
Tom

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

Shel43,

I'm sorry that circumstance has brought you to our neck of the woods, but now that you are here, welcome. Things are likely to be moving pretty quickly for you, but you've found an experienced, knowledgeable and supportive group that will help you any way they can. Many of your questions can be answered and fears addressed by reading the threads and stories found here, or feel free to ask questions, join in on the conversations, or just vent if/when you need to. Keep us posted and we'll help you through it.

Good luck and Godspeed,

Gary

Tambo
Posts: 20
Joined: Nov 2011

Been there; done that on 3/15/2010. For me the procedure was smooth sailing all the way through. Still kicking.
Worry not; it doesn't help. Your family support will lift you above the fray. Seek help from a higher authority; that does help.
Good luck and blessings to you
Floyd

SushiSharon's picture
SushiSharon
Posts: 10
Joined: Jan 2012

Hi Shel, I just found out Saturday that I have a 9cm tumor, 99% sure of cancer. Going to remove my entire left kidney. I have great spirits, because I am a believer, and I have named this my Kidney Missions Trip! My plan is to plant seeds in the lives of those I am going to come in contact with over the next month. I see my surgeon on the 31st, but I get to see my oncologist this Friday, along with my primary care physician, who was kind enough to prescribe me Xanax for the anxiety I am feeling. Having a bit of a hard time sleeping. Don't be afraid to ask for help in that area. It's survival mode at it's finest! I also started juicing, preparing my body for a good recovery. Welcome to the Kidney Club. Another good site for information is the National Kidney Foundation.

Blessings,
Sharon

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

I, too, had the open surgery, and the recovery is a bear. But as hard as it is, I can promise you that each day you'll feel a bit better. By the 6 week mark, most people are amazed at how suddenly they feel better. Do what they tell you to do in the first few days after surgery as far as moving around and getting up is concerned. You'll hate it, but it will speed the healing process.

Boomersdad
Posts: 25
Joined: Jan 2012

Hi Sushi I have just posted under the heading (home from surgery)It as been very painfull but not as bad as I thought it would of been ,you will just have to take your time with everything, but as others have said you will find a big difference day by day,I had a cacer the size of a tennis ball on my left kidney and had them both removed 7-1-2012 all by key hole ,I have me follow up on Monday 30th Jan to have a full report on what they found, my fingers are crossed, Name Errol Staffordshire uk,

Boomersdad
Posts: 25
Joined: Jan 2012

Hi Sushi I have just posted under the heading (home from surgery)It as been very painfull but not as bad as I thought it would of been ,you will just have to take your time with everything, but as others have said you will find a big difference day by day,I had a cacer the size of a tennis ball on my left kidney and had them both removed 7-1-2012 all by key hole ,I have me follow up on Monday 30th Jan to have a full report on what they found, my fingers are crossed, Name Errol Staffordshire uk,

Shel43
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2012

Was just told yesterday they are moving my surgery up to Thursday if this week.... no more waiting and i can finally get this tumor outof me.. thanks for all the comments and advice which will definitely come in handy! Prayers to all of you!

Shel43
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2012

Was just told yesterday they are moving my surgery up to Thursday if this week.... no more waiting and i can finally get this tumor outof me.. thanks for all the comments and advice which will definitely come in handy! Prayers to all of you!

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

Shel,

All the "fun" begins for you tomorrow, yeah the next couple weeks will be a bit rough, but two months from now you will be back to near "normal" with many many years to look forward to, its a small price to pay. Thoughts and prayers are with you, expect to hear how things went in a few days.

Good luck and Godspeed,

Gary

lawmanmike's picture
lawmanmike
Posts: 29
Joined: Jan 2012

Welcome Shel ... you are among friends! I am two weeks out from an open partial nephrectomy and doing a little better every day. I know what you are going through and the best advice I can think of is to tell you to do your best to simply relax. Yes it sucks that this is happening to you but the things these doctors can do is amazing! My tests did come back confirming cancer but since they are confident they got it all out it doesn't really matter much - they are saying I am effectively cured! It is a very stressful process for sure but the best thing you can do before surgery is to clear your plate, organize your life for the recovery process then do you best to relax. Exercise, spend time with family and friends, and enjoy life. Recovery is not easy but it is completely doable and frankly, not nearly as bad as I expected it would be. Best of luck to you! You are in my thoughts and prayers - please keep us posted on your progress!

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1481
Joined: Jan 2010

Shel,

The most important thing is to have a positive attitude. So what if it is Cancer. You are going to fight back and get rid of it. The next week or two (after Thursday) are going to be a little rough. Not fun, but thats what it takes to get thru this. Lets here from you next week.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

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

Any heavy lifting you need done around the house, do it now. After surgery, you won't be able to lift things for awhile. Gallon of milk, cat litter, laundry, trash, recycling -- get all that stuff taken care of before surgery. When you get home, you'll just want to sleep. The pain meds will take away your appetite, but do stay hydrated. Even if you start to feel better, take it easy.

You have no real restrictions on your lifestyle after nephrectomy, other than keep an eye on your blood pressure -- you don't want to put any stress on the one kidney remaining. But rest assured that people live perfectly normal lives with one kidney.

After surgery, let's talk about the pathology report and the follow up schedule. (I just finished my first round of follow-ups with no problems.)

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 1875
Joined: Oct 2011

Good name. You can really focus on something that has a name other than "it". I was calling mine "Rosemary's baby". Had to get that monster out of me. I would wish you good luck, but luck is second place to having a good attitude and good medical team. I hope your doctor is able to stay at a Holiday Inn the night before. Keep us posted with your magnificent recovery.

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2807
Joined: Nov 2011

"Rosemary's Baby" was a good bit of imagination Fox - I suppose "Alien" is a little too graphic.

Best of luck tomorrow Shel, though as Fox says you won't need luck so I'll also with you the best possible outcome.

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

Mine was always "The Leach" (also my pet name for politicians), but I do like Rosemary's Baby and Alien.

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2807
Joined: Nov 2011

Funnily enough I've never thought of my lesion as an entity but rather as a misguided process that I needed to have put into reverse. It now occurs to me that the colourful labels don't betoken some sort of illicit reification (because the tumours themselves are palpable enough) and maybe the names confer a degree of focus that woul be useful in bringing a guided imagery approach to bear. However, it's a bit late after the offending material has been excised and so I'll have to find a different focus.

gwhite's picture
gwhite
Posts: 18
Joined: Jan 2012

Shel'
I have a good idea how your mind is running now. Mine ran the same way. My rcc tumor, back in '93 weighed in at 20 pounds and was a real crowd pleaser for the med students in the observation gallery. The last thing I remember was after my surgeon said they were using Versed as the knock out media was me saying "I understand that 3 out of 4 New York doctor prefer Vers---" and then I woke up the next day.
Well, they cut me three ways, frequent, deep and wide! I remember asking for a glass of water in the recovery room. The nurse barked at me "You can't drink any water" to which I replied, "I just want to see if my ribs leak". I still think that was a pretty good one liner for a feller in the shape I was in at that moment.

Now I do not tell you this to trifle with you, just to encourage you that you WILL get through this and finding something to laugh about even in the worst of circumstances can only hasten the healing process. Get the best room you can possibly afford with the prettiest view. Don't let them have you overlooking the garbage disposal. Here I am talking about little things which can add up to that wonderful day when, you will wake up and notice that things seem abnormally strange and different. Then you will suddenly realize that NOTHING IS HURTING.

Take time to get acquainted with your neighbors in the fellowship of pain. Your listening to their story will help heal both of you. Chances are you will be the only stranger in that whole place who will take the time to do so and you will be surprised at how much this helps both of you.

Believe it or not, you are in no immediate danger even though the road ahead seems daunting. This means that you will have time. Time to heal. Time to plan ahead. Time to deal with whatever comes your way. There are a lot of us here who can and will be of help to you. Someday, you might visualize telling others of how you beat a rather large size tumor that made the mistake of coming your way. That is when you will finally know for sure that you have won and I expect you will one day realize that your life was richer for the experience. The possibilities are always greater than the averages. - gwhite

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

Kinda reminds me of the story about a tower worker who fell from a great height sustaining many broken bones and life threatening internal injuries, but never lost consciousness. In the ER as they worked frantically to save his life a nurse asked if he was allergic to anything, "YES" he replied and all activity ceased immediately. After a dramatic pause he added "Apparently gravity". His sense of humor changed the mood of everyone in the room from one of doom to one of hope. Laughter truly can be the best medicine. And yes, he did survive.

Karin Lee's picture
Karin Lee
Posts: 1
Joined: Feb 2012

Hi Shel,

I went into the ER on the 25th with severe stomache pain. While I was there they discovered I had Diverticulitis, Huge Gall stone and a tumor (9cm) on my left kidney..What a shock ..I thought I was the picture of Health....I have been to the Urologist ...I also have been to the Surgeon that is also going to remove my gallbladder at the same time..I have had a bone scan and a Chest X-ray (Thank God they came back clean)...4 Drs..have looked at my CT and they think it is contained...I will feel better after the Pathologists looks at it...have any of you had treatment if they decide it is contained? I am having my surgey the 10th..Not soon enough for me..I hate having that THING in me...The funny thing I quit smoking 21 years ago..I DON'T HAVE ANY OF THE CHARACTERISTICS THAT SUPPOSEDLY CAUSES KIDNEY CANCER...I am nervous..I am scared but I feel so relieved that all my CT's look good...Please Pray for me

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1481
Joined: Jan 2010

Dear Karin,

Of course you are nervous and scared. We all were when we got back our CT resuls and were told we had Kidney Cancer and than right out of the gate we are told we have to have major abdominal surgery and you are told you have some excess baggage as well.

I have never smoked and I got it anyway. From your picture I was a few years older than you which did not make things any easier for me. My surgery was 9 and 1/2 years ago this week. The good news is that Nepherectomys have been around for years and it is not as complicted as brain surgery or spinal surgery. The new stuff with the Laproscopic, DiVinci and partial are for those with smaller tumors. Mine was 4.2 cm, laproscopic and a radical Nepherectomy.

The point is that there is no way of sugar coating the surgery or the days and weeks that follow, but where it is contained you are cured. Just follow up tests to make sure it does not spead and then over the long run watch your Kidney function numbers and blood pressure and see a Nephrologist if necessary. I believe if you read my posts you will find a weath of information, straight talk and humor mixed in.

Our prayers are with you. Take it easy on the Superbowl food as you need to prep the next day. Let us here from you a few days after.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

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

Karin,
Almost everyone on here discovered their kidney cancer by accident. In my case it was a routine physical that showed blood in my urine.
Had lap radical nephrectomy on 11/23, 7.8 cm, tumor was contained, no further treatment, just CT scans every six months.
I went back to work within 5 weeks, though the first 10 days after surgery can be rough.
There appear to be many theories on the cause of kidney cancer, but I too had none of the characteristics.
Keeping a positive outlook is important. Feeling nervous and scared is normal for all of us. Stay tuned to this forum, there are some great folks on here.
We will pray for you. The morning of my surgery, my prayer turned into a 'mantra' that I kept repeating....wisdom, peace, courage, strength.
I pray the same for you.
Mike

MikeK703's picture
MikeK703
Posts: 235
Joined: Sep 2010

Hi Karin,
Your story sounds similar to mine -- went to the Urgent Care Center on the weekend with pain and the CT scan found a large gallstone and, of course, the kidney cancer. I had the gall bladder and the kidney removed during the same surgery. That was 18 months ago. No further treatment was necessary. I'm doing just fine now and I'm sure you'll be okay also. Nobody knows for sure what caused their kidney cancer. I gave up smoking 30 years before getting it. Could have been that, could have been a number of other things. I'm grateful that my gall bladder started acting up; otherwise, the cancer would not have been found so early.
Best of luck
Mike

lawmanmike's picture
lawmanmike
Posts: 29
Joined: Jan 2012

Hi Karen - I am so sorry to hear your news - it can definitely be very scary - but it is amazing what doctors can do these days and their ability to cure you of this cancer is very real. It is great news to hear that the tumor is contained in the kidney. My surgery was about 3 weeks and the tumor was fully contained in the kidney as well. All scans were good pre-op and the pathology after surgery confirmed it was contained in the kidney with good margins all around the area they excised so they are effectively calling it a cure. Of course there will be the regular scans for the rest of my life to be sure but I am cancer free. The surgery and recovery with an open procedure is pretty intense but it is completely manageable. Just make sure to clear your plate before surgery and arrange for help after. You will be feeling much better after the first week and if you are like me you will see improvement everyday - hopefully with the knowledge that you are cancer free! Best of luck to you - you are in my thoughts and prayers!

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