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12 weeks post open radical nephrectomy

babycakes11's picture
Posts: 7
Joined: Apr 2011

Hi everybody....it's been a while since I have been on here but I was just wondering if anybody can give me some advice. I had surgery for stage 3 kidney cancer on March 3rd. My left kidney was removed, I had a 12cm mass and the Doctor said it was very aggressive. The surgery went well and I have recovered ok for the most part. I am having a few issues with constant fatigue and I am still sore at times. It hurts to laugh, cough, sneeze and to blow my nose. I understand it is going to take my body some time to completely recover but I am having some depression and anxiety with all that has happened. I have returned to work but it has been stressful for me to be there. I am a correction officer and I am always worried about getting hurt, I used to worry before but it has gotten a lot worse since my surgery. I have been lucky to have supervisors that know what I am going through and let me work a less physical post but it is still very busy and stressful. I can't afford to quit and I need my insurance now more than ever. I am trying to take care of myself first and foremost but everything just gets overwhelming for me at times. I am going to be getting some genetic testing done next week so they may be able to figure out more about my cancer and if I have the risk of it coming back. I am scared and it is always in the back of my mind. Any suggestions from you all would sure help me in getting through this.

icemantoo's picture
Posts: 3351
Joined: Jan 2010

Do not push yourself unnecessarily. You have joined our club with a little more baggage (size of tumor) than most of us. You are going to need more follow up care and more rest. You're recovery is going to take longer than most of us with smaller tumors. There has been so much advancement that I have seen and heard of in the last 9 years since I was diagnosed in the care and prognosis of Kidney Cancer. Do what you can, when you can. Seek appropriate follow up medical care and monitoring.

Best wishes,


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

Iceman is right. Because your tumor was larger than most, your body has really had a shock. 3 months after my last major abdominal surgery, I was still hobbling around very carefully, being very protective of my abdomen. I couldn't even watch anything rough on tv, much less work in a rough environment.

Don't forget that you are entitled to Family Medical Leave Act if you need it. Don't have to keep paying you during the time off, but you keep your insurance and it guarantees your job will still be there when you are ready to go back. You might want to discuss your options with Human Resources or the union or whatever is relevant in your field.

Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2011

Hi I had my kidney removed on Feb 3 and just within the last 2 weeks or so have been feeling very fatigued. I am goign to make a Doc appt with my family physician to see what is going on. You should make one too. Let me know what they say. They say everyone is different, but I know something isnt right because all of a sudden I have no energy to do anything. Good luck and Gid Bless, also I still have weird feelings on my right side and my right thigh is numb and my hip still hurts me.

icemantoo's picture
Posts: 3351
Joined: Jan 2010

Linda, Your concerns need to be followed up with your family physician as well as your Kidney doctor. It does not sound like it is related to Kidney Cancer to me, but I can only relate to my experiences. Hopefully it is nothing serious.

Best Wishes,

suzika's picture
Posts: 12
Joined: Jun 2011

Fatigue is completely normal. I don't want to scare you but, many RCC survivors take up to a year to start feeling more like themselves.

The only real worry about your job would be if you got into an altercation with an inmate. Is there anyway they can put you into a position where you aren't directly with the inmates?

The reason for this is you don't want anything to happen to your remaining kidney, which is why they recommend not doing any sort of high contact sport.

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