Late Night With NED

Positive_Mental_Attitude Member Posts: 454
edited August 2018 in Kidney Cancer #1

My official visit to review my results is not until Wednesday, but my chest x-ray and ultrasound scans popped up on my patient portal a few minutes ago.  No evidence of metastatic disease and unremarkable.

NEMDU is kind of hard to pronounce, so we will call NEMBU NED.  NED is welcome in my world any time of the day or night. 

Four years clean.  I am pumped.

I still vividly remember my initial diagnosis.  I was in the emergency room in a hospital in rural Arizona with a bowel obstruction, and after reeading my CT scans the surgeon/doctor came in to tell me they wanted to operate on my obstruction, and "oh, by the way, you have a tumor on your kidney."  I was in denial for several weeks.  I signed myself out of the hospital against medical advice, as there was no way I was going to have surgery in a small, rural hospital.

I promised my wife I would check myself back into a hospital when we got back to NJ, and then I reneged on the deal--that's dumb, stubborn me.  My wife called one of my fellow firefighter friends, who showed up at my house and dragged me to the Emergency Room of a local hospital.  The doctors at my local hospital decided surgery was not necessary, and the obstruction relieved itself.  I had to deal with the tumor.

Later that week, I went to a local urologist.  At 47 years old, I never had a need for a urologist.  I was and still am a health nut.  Don't drink, smoke, do drugs, exercise regularly, and mostly eat right. The local urologist grimaced as he read my CT scans and told me that I would have to have a radical nephrectomy due to the location of my tumor, which was relatively small at 2.9 cm.  I went to MSKCC in NYC for a second opinion with Dr. Paul Russo.  At the initial consulation, I became very comfortable with Dr. Russo, who did not guarantee, but reasonably assured me he would be able to preserve my right kidney.  This was in early-mid May, and for some dumb reason, I scheduled my surgery for October.  I then changed my mind and moved the surgery up to early-mid July.  My health insurance approved MSKCC and Dr. Russo. I was set to go.

Then, two weeks before surgery, my health insurer pulled the plug on MSKCC and Dr. Russo, claiming they were out of network.  I fought them.  Ten days before my scheduled surgery date, I was still going back and forth with my insurer, and then a friend put me in touch with a state Assemblywoman, who made a call on my behalf to my insurer.  Within a day, my insurer backed down and re-approved MSKCC.  The insurance battle was more stressful than the whole cancer thing.  I had my surgery in July 2014, and 95% of my right kidney was preserved.

Recovery was initally rough for the first couple of days, but I was adamant to follow the advice to walk as much as possible and 2 days after the surgery, I started walking 6 miles per day. 

My screen name - Positive Mental Attitude is reference a lyric in the song "Attitude" by the band Bad Brains--interesting little story about the song:

"In a quirk of fate that has become part of the Bad Brains legend, [Bad Brains singer] H.R. started thumbing through a copy of Napoleon Hill’s self-help book Think and Grow Rich. ‘My father gave it to me,’ he says. ‘I was 18. I read it through cover to cover.’ It introduced him to Positive Mental Attitude: ‘It was saying, if you do it in your mind, if you get your mind right, you can do anything. It had this dramatic change in my life. I decided I would use it in my day-to-day living and I would put the lyrics and the message in the songs.’ In brief, the book lays out keys to success: ‘definiteness of purpose, the knowledge of what one wants, and a burning desire to possess it.’” "

My whole journey made me realize the power of having a positive attitude. 

Sorry for the long story, but I always like to reminisce about the chain of events.  I am very blessed to have a loving and caring wife and two wonderful boys who were awesome the whole time.  While I was initially in strong denial after my diagnosis, I turned to a blubbering mess a day or two before the surgery.  But the outcome was great.


May NED be with as many of you as possible!!!!




  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,359 Member
    Send Uncle Ned on his rounds.

    Send uncle Ned on his rounds.





  • Canadian Sandy
    Canadian Sandy Member Posts: 725 Member
    Great attitude and may you be

    Great attitude and may you be Ned forever!

  • Retcenturion
    Retcenturion Member Posts: 240
    edited August 2018 #4
    Thanks for sharing

    Thanks for sharing the good new and positive attitude. It makes the day a little bit nicer

  • APny
    APny Member Posts: 1,995 Member
    So happy for you PMA! Sent

    So happy for you PMA! Sent you a private message also, wishing you a visit from Uncle Ned. Way to go!