Waiting for surgery re: Kidney removal

DarrylPe
DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
Hi I was diagnosis wth stage 1 kidney cancer two weeks ago. I'm currently waiting for a date for the surgery. I would appreciate any advise on things to prepare for and, things to expect after surgery. Thanks in advance this is a wonderful site
«134567

Comments

  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,359 Member
    Welcome to the Club
    Dear DarrylPe,

    Welcome to the club. Many of us like you and I with stage 1 RCC have a full recovery after the surgery. I am an 8 and 1/2 year survivor. The more you can tell us about your diagnosis and proposed surgery the more others and myself can respond appropriately to your concerns.

    Best wishes,

    Icemantoo
  • Mhamby
    Mhamby Member Posts: 13
    5 weeks post op myself
    Well, actually almost 6 weeks! Welcome Darryl. I had my right kidney removed via hand assisted laproscopy. I had the choice to go for a partial removal, but I wanted no chance of anything being missed (doc advised for the partial, but I wanted aggressive treatment), For me, the " gut clean out" prior to surgery was the worst part. I had a 3 day hospital stay. After surgery, I had great pain control, and I'm seeing my doc tomorrow to wean off. Due to a non-related issue I had longer narcotic relief than I think may be normal.I still find it uncomfortable to lay on my right side (in my head or physical, I'm not sure).
    If you have any questions, ask away. Good luck! I like to say cancer picked the wrong diva - that works for dudes too!
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    icemantoo said:

    Welcome to the Club
    Dear DarrylPe,

    Welcome to the club. Many of us like you and I with stage 1 RCC have a full recovery after the surgery. I am an 8 and 1/2 year survivor. The more you can tell us about your diagnosis and proposed surgery the more others and myself can respond appropriately to your concerns.

    Best wishes,

    Icemantoo

    Up coming surgery
    Hi Iceman thanks for the greeting .Long story short I went to see a hemotologist in May of 2010 because I experienced two viral infections that gave me a high fever and pain in my right flank. She then order a CAT scan which resulted in the finding of a mass measuring 4 X 4 X 2.9 cm on my right kidney. She refered me to a urologist who sent me to have both a CAT scan and a MRI. The latest result in February revealed that the mass had grown to 4 X 5.4 X 4.2 cm. My urologist sent me for a second opinion and the second doctor agreeded with him that the kidney should be removed . I was told that laporscopic surgery was the method that will be used to remove the kidney .I would appreiate any insight you can provide as to what to expect both before and after surgery.

    Thanks
    DarrylPe
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    Mhamby said:

    5 weeks post op myself
    Well, actually almost 6 weeks! Welcome Darryl. I had my right kidney removed via hand assisted laproscopy. I had the choice to go for a partial removal, but I wanted no chance of anything being missed (doc advised for the partial, but I wanted aggressive treatment), For me, the " gut clean out" prior to surgery was the worst part. I had a 3 day hospital stay. After surgery, I had great pain control, and I'm seeing my doc tomorrow to wean off. Due to a non-related issue I had longer narcotic relief than I think may be normal.I still find it uncomfortable to lay on my right side (in my head or physical, I'm not sure).
    If you have any questions, ask away. Good luck! I like to say cancer picked the wrong diva - that works for dudes too!

    Speedy recovery
    Hi Mhamby hope your feeling better and I wish you a speedy recovery. This whole thing is moving at a faster rate than I can wrap my head around it. I being reading other post and asking my doctor a few questions but I'm still trying to put it all together in my head .
    Also what's the "gut clean out" if you don't mind me asking.

    Thanks for your post
    DarrylPe
  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,359 Member
    DarrylPe said:

    Speedy recovery
    Hi Mhamby hope your feeling better and I wish you a speedy recovery. This whole thing is moving at a faster rate than I can wrap my head around it. I being reading other post and asking my doctor a few questions but I'm still trying to put it all together in my head .
    Also what's the "gut clean out" if you don't mind me asking.

    Thanks for your post
    DarrylPe

    The gut cleanout
    The gut clean out is the liquid plumber they give you the night before surgery to clean out your bowels. I think it goes by a different name than liquid plumber, but the result is the same. Your tumor is at least medium size for Stage 1 and there are no ifs and buts that you need this surgery. Mine was 2.7 cm and was laproscopically removed. There is always a chance that they may start laproscopically, but go to open surgery. There is no way I can sugar coat the surgery. I was in the hospital 2 days post surgery. My surgeon wrote on my discharge summary that I was discharged without pain. I did not know that he did stand up comedy on the side. After you are discharged you will be in bed or on the couch for 7-10 days and shou;d fell pretty normal by 6 weeks. The little scar from surgery will be swollen for a while. Hopefully you will need no further treatmet after the surgery.
    You will have follow up tests several times the first year and than yearly thereafter.

    Best wishes,

    Icemantoo
  • Mhamby
    Mhamby Member Posts: 13
    DarrylPe said:

    Speedy recovery
    Hi Mhamby hope your feeling better and I wish you a speedy recovery. This whole thing is moving at a faster rate than I can wrap my head around it. I being reading other post and asking my doctor a few questions but I'm still trying to put it all together in my head .
    Also what's the "gut clean out" if you don't mind me asking.

    Thanks for your post
    DarrylPe

    Ahh the gut clean!
    I had to do clear liquid diet two days prior to surgery, then day before surgery it's laxative day and no eating or putting anything in you mouth (they mean it, like no chewing gum)...I just cramped a lot and was tied to the toilet in a most uncomfortable way. Your doc may have a different protocol.
    I was thinking of you after I posted. Just wondering what was really important to know. You just discovered the speed with which things happen. You barely find out you have it and you have surgery, and then many of us don't require any further treatment. Some where else on this board you will find a thread about that (I was the original poster) -I think you may find helpful posts in that thread about how the speed can be a psychological challenge.
    I really wish you well. You will find many friends on this site ready to lend an "ear" or offer support. Please keep us posted on how you are doing.
    Meg
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    icemantoo said:

    The gut cleanout
    The gut clean out is the liquid plumber they give you the night before surgery to clean out your bowels. I think it goes by a different name than liquid plumber, but the result is the same. Your tumor is at least medium size for Stage 1 and there are no ifs and buts that you need this surgery. Mine was 2.7 cm and was laproscopically removed. There is always a chance that they may start laproscopically, but go to open surgery. There is no way I can sugar coat the surgery. I was in the hospital 2 days post surgery. My surgeon wrote on my discharge summary that I was discharged without pain. I did not know that he did stand up comedy on the side. After you are discharged you will be in bed or on the couch for 7-10 days and shou;d fell pretty normal by 6 weeks. The little scar from surgery will be swollen for a while. Hopefully you will need no further treatmet after the surgery.
    You will have follow up tests several times the first year and than yearly thereafter.

    Best wishes,

    Icemantoo

    Good Info
    Hi Iceman thanks for getting back. Good info and very reassuring.I got a date for the surgery today april 13 is the big day. I'm so glad I found this site nothing like the voice of experience to give you confidence.

    Thanks Again

    Darryl
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    Mhamby said:

    Ahh the gut clean!
    I had to do clear liquid diet two days prior to surgery, then day before surgery it's laxative day and no eating or putting anything in you mouth (they mean it, like no chewing gum)...I just cramped a lot and was tied to the toilet in a most uncomfortable way. Your doc may have a different protocol.
    I was thinking of you after I posted. Just wondering what was really important to know. You just discovered the speed with which things happen. You barely find out you have it and you have surgery, and then many of us don't require any further treatment. Some where else on this board you will find a thread about that (I was the original poster) -I think you may find helpful posts in that thread about how the speed can be a psychological challenge.
    I really wish you well. You will find many friends on this site ready to lend an "ear" or offer support. Please keep us posted on how you are doing.
    Meg

    Surgery Date
    Hi Meg great to hear from you and , thanks for the info. Everything is so new to me.I got a date today for the surgery it's April 13 can't wait to get this over with the unknown is killing me. You have helped clear some it up for me. Thanks for being there will keep you posted. Keep healing .

    Thanks
    Darryl
  • Mhamby
    Mhamby Member Posts: 13
    DarrylPe said:

    Surgery Date
    Hi Meg great to hear from you and , thanks for the info. Everything is so new to me.I got a date today for the surgery it's April 13 can't wait to get this over with the unknown is killing me. You have helped clear some it up for me. Thanks for being there will keep you posted. Keep healing .

    Thanks
    Darryl

    Surgery date
    I'm putting your surgery date on my calandsr so I can pray for you that day, if that's ok with you. I believe this is one of those occasions we can all use a little grace!
    Best wishes and keep us posted on how you are doing.
    Meg
  • Jamie1.3cm
    Jamie1.3cm Member Posts: 188
    Mhamby said:

    Surgery date
    I'm putting your surgery date on my calandsr so I can pray for you that day, if that's ok with you. I believe this is one of those occasions we can all use a little grace!
    Best wishes and keep us posted on how you are doing.
    Meg

    TMI: the graphic details
    I concur. You may be prescribed a gallon jug of purgative/laxative to drink the day before surgery. You drink a glass at a time, about every 15 minutes. It will send you running for the bathroom with urgent diarrhea, so stay close to a toilet. You'll drink the jug over a matter of several hours (6-8), and the doc will give you more specific instructions. Generally you are not allowed to eat anything this day (maybe jello and clear broth), but you'll be so full of the purgative, you won't mind so much.

    You'll start running to the bathroom about half way through it, probably. You might also want to buy some moist wipes so that your bum doesn't get raw from all the wiping. It tastes like salt water, but if you get co-lytly or nu-lytly, you have flavor packs. Drink it chilled. Through a straw. Keep drinking and going until you are "running clear." "Running clear" means transparent diarrhea, probably tinted yellow, but no more pieces of poo. So, if you get that pre-surgery prescription, that's what that's like.

    The day of surgery, you will probably have to be there at the crack of dawn. Surgery itself is no problem. You won't even be awake. Many people will be monitoring you very closely: your breathing, your pulse.

    After surgery, you'll be rolled to your room. You will sleep the rest of the day. So, if your family has been waiting, it will be very anti-climactic for them as you will just sleep and sleep.

    You may be put in control of your own pain med through a morphine machine -- you push the button to administer the med yourself. You'll be hooked up to fluids, maybe antibiotics, pain meds, and probably a urinary catheter (you won't feel it). You wont have to worry about needing to get up for a bowel movement because, remember, you're still empty! Slowly but surely, they'll wean you off the tubes and re-introduce light foods. To prevent blood clots, they'll have you up and walking the very next day. You just push your pole of IV bags around with you on your laps of the hallway. With laproscopic surgery you will likely be released in just a few days.

    You are lucky to be having laproscopic surgery, as the whole point of laproscopic surgery is that it's a much smaller surgical incision. That means much less pain, a much shorter recovery, and a much smaller risk for hernia. You'll probably be on pain meds for a week or two. Your body did experience a shock, so you will feel knocked for a loop for several weeks.

    All my surgeries have been open surgeries rather than laproscopic, so I'll leave it to the others to give more details on that specific recovery.

    You can expect follow up appts with your urologist, and it's very important if your tumor is larger than 3 cm that you be screened with CT scans periodically.

    Hope that helps and wasn't too graphic! : )
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75

    TMI: the graphic details
    I concur. You may be prescribed a gallon jug of purgative/laxative to drink the day before surgery. You drink a glass at a time, about every 15 minutes. It will send you running for the bathroom with urgent diarrhea, so stay close to a toilet. You'll drink the jug over a matter of several hours (6-8), and the doc will give you more specific instructions. Generally you are not allowed to eat anything this day (maybe jello and clear broth), but you'll be so full of the purgative, you won't mind so much.

    You'll start running to the bathroom about half way through it, probably. You might also want to buy some moist wipes so that your bum doesn't get raw from all the wiping. It tastes like salt water, but if you get co-lytly or nu-lytly, you have flavor packs. Drink it chilled. Through a straw. Keep drinking and going until you are "running clear." "Running clear" means transparent diarrhea, probably tinted yellow, but no more pieces of poo. So, if you get that pre-surgery prescription, that's what that's like.

    The day of surgery, you will probably have to be there at the crack of dawn. Surgery itself is no problem. You won't even be awake. Many people will be monitoring you very closely: your breathing, your pulse.

    After surgery, you'll be rolled to your room. You will sleep the rest of the day. So, if your family has been waiting, it will be very anti-climactic for them as you will just sleep and sleep.

    You may be put in control of your own pain med through a morphine machine -- you push the button to administer the med yourself. You'll be hooked up to fluids, maybe antibiotics, pain meds, and probably a urinary catheter (you won't feel it). You wont have to worry about needing to get up for a bowel movement because, remember, you're still empty! Slowly but surely, they'll wean you off the tubes and re-introduce light foods. To prevent blood clots, they'll have you up and walking the very next day. You just push your pole of IV bags around with you on your laps of the hallway. With laproscopic surgery you will likely be released in just a few days.

    You are lucky to be having laproscopic surgery, as the whole point of laproscopic surgery is that it's a much smaller surgical incision. That means much less pain, a much shorter recovery, and a much smaller risk for hernia. You'll probably be on pain meds for a week or two. Your body did experience a shock, so you will feel knocked for a loop for several weeks.

    All my surgeries have been open surgeries rather than laproscopic, so I'll leave it to the others to give more details on that specific recovery.

    You can expect follow up appts with your urologist, and it's very important if your tumor is larger than 3 cm that you be screened with CT scans periodically.

    Hope that helps and wasn't too graphic! : )

    Not to graphic
    Thanks Jamie not to graphic at all in fact it was just what I needed.The straight truth works best for me. I'm so greatful for people like you who can provide me insight that can only come from a survivor .

    Thanks
    DarrylPe
  • antjeanne
    antjeanne Member Posts: 13
    DarrylPe said:

    Not to graphic
    Thanks Jamie not to graphic at all in fact it was just what I needed.The straight truth works best for me. I'm so greatful for people like you who can provide me insight that can only come from a survivor .

    Thanks
    DarrylPe

    I agree with Jamie,She
    I agree with Jamie,She nailed it. My surgey was 8 months ago,i had a 4.9 cm on my left kidney.and had the whole kidney removed with the hand assisted laproscopy. i was in the hospital 5 days. i would say about 2 months ago is when i felt close to being back to normal activity/sports wise. just after the surgery i would get tired very easy. just walking to the kitchen for lunch required a nap after. listen to your body, it will tell you when you need to rest. dont over do it! i thought i was super man and over did it and spent 2 days in bed.
    alot of my issues were mental and not physical. while i was in pain after the surgery ,the big part for me was getting over the words "you have Cancer" .My Dr spent alot of time talking to me before the surgery. and it helped. he told me i could be sad that i have cancer. or jump up and down that i got a miricle and they found my cancer by accident, and as soon as the surgery was over I didnt have cancer any more. I choose to be happy that I am a survivor,(I just had my 3rd post surgery check up Thursday and im still clean!).Time is the important thing. you will forget about the little pain/discomfort you had after the surgery. But you will remember the rest of your life! and enjoy everyday and your family. God brought you this far and is going to heal you for a reason.
    Be Blessed.
  • Jamie1.3cm
    Jamie1.3cm Member Posts: 188
    antjeanne said:

    I agree with Jamie,She
    I agree with Jamie,She nailed it. My surgey was 8 months ago,i had a 4.9 cm on my left kidney.and had the whole kidney removed with the hand assisted laproscopy. i was in the hospital 5 days. i would say about 2 months ago is when i felt close to being back to normal activity/sports wise. just after the surgery i would get tired very easy. just walking to the kitchen for lunch required a nap after. listen to your body, it will tell you when you need to rest. dont over do it! i thought i was super man and over did it and spent 2 days in bed.
    alot of my issues were mental and not physical. while i was in pain after the surgery ,the big part for me was getting over the words "you have Cancer" .My Dr spent alot of time talking to me before the surgery. and it helped. he told me i could be sad that i have cancer. or jump up and down that i got a miricle and they found my cancer by accident, and as soon as the surgery was over I didnt have cancer any more. I choose to be happy that I am a survivor,(I just had my 3rd post surgery check up Thursday and im still clean!).Time is the important thing. you will forget about the little pain/discomfort you had after the surgery. But you will remember the rest of your life! and enjoy everyday and your family. God brought you this far and is going to heal you for a reason.
    Be Blessed.

    Living on one kidney
    Yea, it should definitely be mentioned that you can live a perfectly normal life on just one kidney. Hopefully your dr will be able to leave you with half, but if not, that's ok too. People do just fine with one. I wouldn't go on any all-protein diet or anything else that would stress out that one kidney, but one is fine.

    As alluded to above, there is such a thing as post-surgical depression. You may experience it; you may not. But if you do feel bummed after surgery, it's perfectly normal and it will pass.
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    antjeanne said:

    I agree with Jamie,She
    I agree with Jamie,She nailed it. My surgey was 8 months ago,i had a 4.9 cm on my left kidney.and had the whole kidney removed with the hand assisted laproscopy. i was in the hospital 5 days. i would say about 2 months ago is when i felt close to being back to normal activity/sports wise. just after the surgery i would get tired very easy. just walking to the kitchen for lunch required a nap after. listen to your body, it will tell you when you need to rest. dont over do it! i thought i was super man and over did it and spent 2 days in bed.
    alot of my issues were mental and not physical. while i was in pain after the surgery ,the big part for me was getting over the words "you have Cancer" .My Dr spent alot of time talking to me before the surgery. and it helped. he told me i could be sad that i have cancer. or jump up and down that i got a miricle and they found my cancer by accident, and as soon as the surgery was over I didnt have cancer any more. I choose to be happy that I am a survivor,(I just had my 3rd post surgery check up Thursday and im still clean!).Time is the important thing. you will forget about the little pain/discomfort you had after the surgery. But you will remember the rest of your life! and enjoy everyday and your family. God brought you this far and is going to heal you for a reason.
    Be Blessed.

    good to know
    Hi Antjeanne glad to hear about your last check up keep doing what your doing. I glad you mentioned that after surgery one should take it easy and listen to there body. I tend to think that I'm superman too so I'll keep what you said in mind.

    Stay Strong
    DarrylPe
  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,359 Member
    DarrylPe said:

    good to know
    Hi Antjeanne glad to hear about your last check up keep doing what your doing. I glad you mentioned that after surgery one should take it easy and listen to there body. I tend to think that I'm superman too so I'll keep what you said in mind.

    Stay Strong
    DarrylPe

    File your taxes first
    DarrylPe,

    While your big day is coming on April 13, the tax man cometh on April 15. Take care of him before the big day.

    Best wishes,

    Icemantoo
  • trulytall
    trulytall Member Posts: 14
    DarrylPe said:

    good to know
    Hi Antjeanne glad to hear about your last check up keep doing what your doing. I glad you mentioned that after surgery one should take it easy and listen to there body. I tend to think that I'm superman too so I'll keep what you said in mind.

    Stay Strong
    DarrylPe

    Morning DarrylPe :)
    Yes, no doubt this is an extremely anxious time for you and I'll definitely be thinking and praying for you on the day of your surgery. I agree with everyone else, listen to what your body is telling you and rest when you need to. I'm reminded daily about how blessed I am to be here and celebrating life with my family and friends. I'm 8 weeks post-op and recovering well from radical surgery (complete removal)of my left kidney.
    Stay strong and positive.
    Wishing you all the best.
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    trulytall said:

    Morning DarrylPe :)
    Yes, no doubt this is an extremely anxious time for you and I'll definitely be thinking and praying for you on the day of your surgery. I agree with everyone else, listen to what your body is telling you and rest when you need to. I'm reminded daily about how blessed I am to be here and celebrating life with my family and friends. I'm 8 weeks post-op and recovering well from radical surgery (complete removal)of my left kidney.
    Stay strong and positive.
    Wishing you all the best.

    Evening Trulytall
    Thanks for the kind thoughts . best to you with your recovery.

    Happy Healing
    DarrylPe
  • DarrylPe
    DarrylPe Member Posts: 75
    DarrylPe said:

    Evening Trulytall
    Thanks for the kind thoughts . best to you with your recovery.

    Happy Healing
    DarrylPe

    Swollen Legs
    Hi everyone quick question. Did anyone have swelling in their legs before their diagnosis was made?
  • autumn4
    autumn4 Member Posts: 18
    DarrylPe said:

    Swollen Legs
    Hi everyone quick question. Did anyone have swelling in their legs before their diagnosis was made?

    Swollen legs
    Hi there and welcome! I had a small tumor on my rt kidney 1 x4cm and they did cyroablation (freezing) of the tumor. It is supposedly the new standard treatment for small tumors. I had the surgery back in September 10. I did have a post op infection abcess on the rt kidney that landed me back in the hospital and at that time my legs ankles and feet became very swollen. They said my creatine levels were elevated and once they flushed the kidneys and rehydrated me the swelling dissapated. I know their are other health conditions that can cause that so I would ask your dr. Good luck with your surgery, will be praying for you.
  • VeryAnxious
    VeryAnxious Member Posts: 67
    autumn4 said:

    Swollen legs
    Hi there and welcome! I had a small tumor on my rt kidney 1 x4cm and they did cyroablation (freezing) of the tumor. It is supposedly the new standard treatment for small tumors. I had the surgery back in September 10. I did have a post op infection abcess on the rt kidney that landed me back in the hospital and at that time my legs ankles and feet became very swollen. They said my creatine levels were elevated and once they flushed the kidneys and rehydrated me the swelling dissapated. I know their are other health conditions that can cause that so I would ask your dr. Good luck with your surgery, will be praying for you.

    Hi Darryl. Good luck to you.
    Hi Darryl. Good luck to you. I think the waiting is the worst part. It gives us too much time to worry and THINK. I also will keep you in my thoughts. I went robotically and had to wait 8 weeks. I think it is the hardest waiting we have to do. Keep busy and TRY TO KEEP POSITIVE THOUGHTS. It is easier said than done. Take care of yourself before surgery. Eat well and be well rested. I found the better shape you are in before helps some. This is a great site for feedback since I have found no one quite understands like a fellow cancer survivor. It is like a bad dream but it will be over.