Surgery is Wednesday morning with tumor in neck lymph node

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Hi all and thank you for the uplifting interest and support last week with this ordeal. 4 and a half weeks ago I found lump on neck about marble size. 1st doc said salivary gland when I came to him with my swollen 'lymph node'.
Now, 3 doctors and a dentist later, the CT scan shows the tumor to be the lymph node just next to the salivary gland. It is 5 or 6 cm already. The biopsy was inadequate but made the tumor VERY ANGRY for a couple of days.
So....the ENT is opening my neck this Wednesday with a pathologist on standby. I wonder if anyone has had an experience like this and what to expect. I asked if the procedure was outpatient and the schedule lady replied, "it depends on how advanced it is".

Now I'm even more scared than ever. I expected another week before surgery to collect myself (single mom of 3).

Comments

  • phrannie51
    phrannie51 Member Posts: 4,716
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    Ok....now you know for sure...
    that it is a tumor...the pathologist standing by will see if it's benign or malignant...It's hard not to be scared...everything is so unknown, just keep in mind it could still be benign. One thing I am happy that they are moving so fast on this...you don't have to wait around for a couple weeks with all this anxiety.

    Did you talk to your kids, yet....(thinking it would be hard to keep the surgery from them if you don't know if you'll be gone all night or not)....

    Keep this in mind...no matter what...YOU ARE GOING TO BE OK...

    Sending you a ton of positive thoughts, and lots of prayers...

    p
  • CivilMatt
    CivilMatt Member Posts: 4,723 Member
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    Don't worry too much
    Tambelina,

    I had 1 lymph node (3+cm) removed from my left side of neck on an out patient basis. At the time the ENT wasn’t sure if he would remove it but he did. I had a lateral Jugular Vein dissection (lymph node had grown around my Jugular Vein). At the same time I had a piece of my lower tongue removed. Neither hurt very much, I never did feel anything on my tongue. My neck surgery made my cheek and neck numb, but it is almost back to feeling normal today (surgery was December 15, 2011). If you care to see a picture of my neck following surgery, click on my name and go to my expressions page. I also had rads and chemo.

    Feeling fine in Oregon.

    Best,

    Matt
  • tambelina
    tambelina Member Posts: 9
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    Ok....now you know for sure...
    that it is a tumor...the pathologist standing by will see if it's benign or malignant...It's hard not to be scared...everything is so unknown, just keep in mind it could still be benign. One thing I am happy that they are moving so fast on this...you don't have to wait around for a couple weeks with all this anxiety.

    Did you talk to your kids, yet....(thinking it would be hard to keep the surgery from them if you don't know if you'll be gone all night or not)....

    Keep this in mind...no matter what...YOU ARE GOING TO BE OK...

    Sending you a ton of positive thoughts, and lots of prayers...

    p

    Thank you p, I like that
    Thank you p, I like that phrase beginning with, "no matter what..."
    They know that I'm having surgery and the teens know it could be something tough. After the results are known I will be straightforward and speak to each one alone (didn't think of that before--thanks)
  • tambelina
    tambelina Member Posts: 9
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    CivilMatt said:

    Don't worry too much
    Tambelina,

    I had 1 lymph node (3+cm) removed from my left side of neck on an out patient basis. At the time the ENT wasn’t sure if he would remove it but he did. I had a lateral Jugular Vein dissection (lymph node had grown around my Jugular Vein). At the same time I had a piece of my lower tongue removed. Neither hurt very much, I never did feel anything on my tongue. My neck surgery made my cheek and neck numb, but it is almost back to feeling normal today (surgery was December 15, 2011). If you care to see a picture of my neck following surgery, click on my name and go to my expressions page. I also had rads and chemo.

    Feeling fine in Oregon.

    Best,

    Matt

    Hey Matt thanks for sharing
    Hey Matt thanks for sharing that picture. I imagined something far worse.

    The tumor is so big (similar to a golf ball), I'm thinking of drawing big eyes on it before surgery.
  • CivilMatt
    CivilMatt Member Posts: 4,723 Member
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    tambelina said:

    Hey Matt thanks for sharing
    Hey Matt thanks for sharing that picture. I imagined something far worse.

    The tumor is so big (similar to a golf ball), I'm thinking of drawing big eyes on it before surgery.

    still funny
    Tambelina,

    That is a good attitude. At least circle it so they get the correct side (kidding)

    Best,

    Matt
  • boardwalkgirl
    boardwalkgirl Member Posts: 269
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    Will be praying for you. We
    Will be praying for you. We will think positive that it is going to be benign and you are going to be fine. I had what they thought was a branchial cleft cyst removed and didn't find out until a week later that it was a lymph node that was malignant. It is good that they will have a pathologist there so you will have your answer right away. They had told me I would have to stay all night but I got to go home that night. Best of luck to you.
  • tambelina
    tambelina Member Posts: 9
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    CivilMatt said:

    still funny
    Tambelina,

    That is a good attitude. At least circle it so they get the correct side (kidding)

    Best,

    Matt

    Laughing out loud about the circle
    Oh Matt that is a good one. Also, on the side without the tumor I could write, "other side". LOL
  • katenorwood
    katenorwood Member Posts: 1,912
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    One step at a time
    Hey there !
    I think it's awsome that a pathologist is waiting and able to get your ENT the info asap on the spot so that they don't have to open you up twice. I will be putting you in my prayers tonite and tomorrow for good results ! (clear margins-and hopefully beniegn) Hopefully you can get some back up with the kids ! Heal fast....and warmest wishes sent ! Katie
  • dales2loud
    dales2loud Member Posts: 45
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    Prayers to you.
    I will be praying for you and your Docs to be successful tomorrow. Nothing fun about surgery. salivary glands really are nice things to have.
    Good luck, keep us updated please.
    Dale Wilkes