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Grateful but scared

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

April 23th at 8:00 AM I had an MRI done on my lower back because of some back issues. The Doctor called that afternoon and said he wanted to see me the next day. I assumed it was not good news about my back, Little did I know that was not the issue. He told me that they found a 2.7 cm mass in my right kidney, It didn't register until I heard myself saying that my mother had died of Kidney cancer. From that point on I didn't really hear much of what he was saying. So back to the hospital for a CAT scan the following Monday, I was back in his office that Tuesday, The mass was enhanced. It didn't mean much to me until he explained that it has blood going to it, I still didn't understand fully. I think it sank in when he said it was a good possibility that I would lose part or all of the kidney and I had to see an Urologist. Off I went to see him next Wednesday with all my reports and scans. I am scheduled for surgery June 17th to have the tumor removed. The past 3 weeks have been a fog for me. It is getting better slowly, but the emotional roller coast ride I am on right now is getting old. I know how lucky I am to have found it early, and he said it should be a fully recover, but when I least except it, my mind goes you have cancer and the emotional ride begins again. Friends, family and work have been great, but I guess I just need some advice on how to deal with the emotional part or am I being overdramatic

Steve

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

Yes, Steve, you are being overdramatic but most of us are when we get this news and you've got more reason than most after your Mother died of the same ailment.

Two things to keep in mind are that your prognosis is excellent, with a tiny tumour, and huge progress has been made since your Mother died (unless that was a recent event). It's likely that they will remove part/all of your kidney and you will be cured. You'll then need routine checks for a few years, just to be sure, but that's it. Keep coming back here for support and helpful advice and we'll see you through it no bother.

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

Hi Steve,

What you are going through is completely normal, you hear "You have cancer and you need surgery.", and the roller coaster ride in the fog begins. Here, you have found a group of people that understand and will support and help you through the process as needed. The good news is that your tumor is very small and caught very early, the odds that you will be cured by the surgery are near 100%. The surgery and recovery aren't fun, but it will not be near as bad as your imagination is making it out to be. They will wheel you into the OR, you will blink and wake up in recovery. After a short stay in the hospital you will be home to rest and recover with everything getting back to "normal" in about 4 to 6 weeks, sooner if you are younger and fit. Keeping busy between now and surgery helps hold the inner demons at bay, working on projects around the house is a common way to kill time. Hang around here and read the stories of others that have been through it, I guarantee it will ease your mind.

Keep us posted, we're here to help,

Gary

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1452
Joined: Jan 2010

Steve,

Tex and Garym have pretty much laid everything out for you. Everybody is scared when they told you have Kidney Cancer and need major surgery as well. I sure was when I was told 10 years ago this month. You are just going thru some normal emotions

I can tell you from my own experience that everything will be fine.

Icemantoo

dhs1963's picture
dhs1963
Posts: 359
Joined: May 2012

I got a CT scan at the ER on May 1 to determine if I needed an appendectomy -- I did not. But,a 6 cm mass was seen on my right kidney. I knew what it meant.

The good thing is the asymptomatic discovery of the cancer probably saved my life. Eventually, it would metastasis and kill me.

For me, the hardest part is waiting until surgery -- scheduled for June 19. I wish it was sooner, as patience is not my strong point. I wish there was something to do.

Cancer is scary. I am finding it difficult to sleep, and am tired during the day.

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

I just wanted to say thank you, the comments left have been a big help. I no longer feel alone, and I thought I was over reacting but I guess we all go through some sort of emotional roller coaster.
Thanks again
Steve

Fishknees
Posts: 73
Joined: Mar 2012

So sorry Steve that you have to join us.

You are not being overly dramatic in the slightest. It is scary and unknown.

Good luck! The waiting is a very hard part of the process. Keep us posted.

Fishie

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 1855
Joined: Oct 2011

.Just in case you didn't know,...this ride costs two tickets and you need to be at least 48" tall. The bad news is that once you get buckled in, you have to complete the whole ride. The good news is that after that , the ride isn't as scarey. Keep us up to date.

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

Unfortunately for me I am over 48" tall and I don't remember buying the ticket, which Is understandable for me right now. I am having a hard time keeping dates straight. My surgery is June 15th and I keep thinking and saying it is June 17th must be some sort of mental block.

alice124's picture
alice124
Posts: 860
Joined: Mar 2012

Maybe your thinking of June 17th is a positive sign. You're already envisioning your recovery. Keep your chin up. You have a lot of supporters here!

CThughes
Posts: 21
Joined: Apr 2012

Hang in there buddy. Much like you and lots of folks, they found mine by accident. Twice the size of yours. That was a little over two years ago and now, minus one kidney, I lift weights, play raquetball, ride harleys, hunt, fish, you name it. It's had no effect on my life other than pay extra attention to the high blood pressure everyone in my family seems to have. You will never quite get over that fear of going back to the doctor, but it will get better.

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

I have to ask if all those activities are a side effect of having your kidney removed? Because
If that's the case my doctor will be very happy with me and all the new exercise :)

BigRich
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2012

Hey Steve. I am having my surgery the same day as you (tomorrow). Best of luck and keep in touch!

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

Well BigRich You will have a few days on me, they changed my surgery date to June 18th. You will have to let me know what is going on and what I can expect when you feel up to it. You will more then likely not see this until after surgery, I wish you the best and will be sending good thoughts and prayer your way all day

Olsera's picture
Olsera
Posts: 38
Joined: Dec 2011

Bigrich I hope your surgery goes well for you today & wishing you a speedy recovery & same to you stevemass on the 18th. You will both do fine & will be relieved to have the surgery done with.

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

Surprising enough I am not nervous or scare about it(this is my first surgery). In a strange way I am looking forward to it, I just want it over it and for things to get back to normal. Although I am not sure what normal is anymore. Maybe I am putting to much emphasis on the surgery in hopes that once it is complete that this will be over, I know that I am more then likely fooling myself. Right now I am not sure about anything except that I want this thing out and gone. Sorry I am rambling I guess I am more nervous then I thought.

sunlover_56's picture
sunlover_56
Posts: 110
Joined: Apr 2012

Dont apologize for rambling and it is ok.. no.. its normal to be nervous (especially being your first surgery) I have had many surgeries for different things and I was still nervous with my kidney surgery. But it is true.. you go to sleep and wake up with no time lost to you at all. Then just let the nurses and everyone pamper you for a day or two. (I liked that part cause I live alone and never get pampered lol ) Most important is to THINK POSITIVE!! Good luck on Monday.. Actually you wont need luck because you will be fine :-)

nfree903
Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2012

I was diagnosed in Feb. 2005 with this kidney cancer & my right kidney was removed, then later, found out that the cancer had spread. Had right adrenal gland removed, several random lumps on the body removed & my thyroid as well. Have been on chemo for just over 2 years. Have not lost all my hair, although it did thin a bit, but am doing pretty well thank to the grace of God. I only have 2 very timey plaes in left lung. Am doagnosed with advanced stage 4, but the Lord is using the chemo to cure me. At 54, I'm eternally thankful to my Lord for His provision here. Also went through a very ugly divorce & went back to get my B.A. degree too. Anything is possible & all things are possible. Don't give up! God has His own plans for you.

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1452
Joined: Jan 2010

nfree903,

Those like you who have had a more difficult journey are needed to inspire those on this board who have had similar obstacles thrown in their path. There are more and more stage 4 survivors like you who refuse to stop fighting and a little prayer where necessary too.

Icemantoo

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1452
Joined: Jan 2010

nfree903,

Those like you who have had a more difficult journey are needed to inspire those on this board who have had similar obstacles thrown in their path. There are more and more stage 4 survivors like you who refuse to stop fighting and a little prayer where necessary too.

Icemantoo

ourfriendjohn's picture
ourfriendjohn
Posts: 72
Joined: Jun 2012

I wanted you to have a "get well" note after surgery. If i'm correct, it is scheduled for today, June 18th. Know that you are in our thoughts and prayers. You have a lot of support here. Welcome to the family.

matchframe
Posts: 58
Joined: May 2012

You should be recovering now. Hope and pray all went well in your surgery. Be sure to take it easy for the next few weeks. Let us hear how you are doing!! We have been there done that so feel free to ask us anything you want to know during your recovery!

Bill

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

It has been 12 days since surgery and today I feel like there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I was in the hospital for 5 days and thought that was a little odd for a partial nephremtomy. Altough I did have a few issues after surgery

alice124's picture
alice124
Posts: 860
Joined: Mar 2012

So glad you are home Steve. That will undoubtedly accelerate your overall recovery. Saying you see the "light at the end of the tunnel" speaks strongly for both your physical and mental recovery. You have many friends here at the touch of your keyboard; keep us posted.

Stevewmass's picture
Stevewmass
Posts: 34
Joined: May 2012

well the wait for the pathology report from the doctor finally got to me today.
So I emailed the hospital and got it emailed to me, I now feel better
knowing for sure what I am dealing with.
It is RCC clear cell type (2.6 CM)
stage 1 grade II
tumor classification pT1 NX MX
also I think this is good news not sure but it sounded good too me
The report says the tumor cells are negative for IMP3 immunohistochemistry. Not totally sure what that means but it does say that patients with IMP3-positive renal cell carcinoma are at a significantly greater rick for the development of distant metastasis following nephrectomy

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1452
Joined: Jan 2010

Steve,

Certainly sounds like good news for Friday the 13th.

Icemantoo

Machelle03's picture
Machelle03
Posts: 27
Joined: Jul 2012

That is awesome Steve. Stage 1 and grade 2. You have a great chance to live forever! I am so happy for you!!

Machelle03's picture
Machelle03
Posts: 27
Joined: Jul 2012

I know you are going through some stuff right now.....and I am praying that
all will be well.

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