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Re Mass Followup

Posts: 61
Joined: Apr 2011

Finally had my apt. with my Urologist yesterday....After looking at the MRI with contrast I had last Tuesday, he said the mass/tumor definitely has to go....I can't describe the fear I felt at that moment, or for that fact, the desperate fear I still have...He said there is a blood supply, and said he'll be doing a partial nephrectomy (robotically)...I was told that once he's in, if he can't get it all, something about margins?, he may need to take the whole kidney....I will be in the hospital overnight, and then he said we'll do a scan in maybe 3 or 6 months to keep an eye on things...Not the news I was hoping to hear....complex cyst would heva been much preferred...The thing that is still eating away at me, is how did this change from this Dec24th, from a cyst on my kidney to a mass....I also had a CT done last June (10) yet again, a cyst on my kidney....I will get the answers if it's the last thing I do....I don't know, I'm so messed up today, all I really want to do is just cry, and I can't, had a trip planned with the family for today for months...They all think this will take my mind off everything...I wish...I feel so weak and ashamed of myself, so many people I know have been through worse, and they all seemed so strong and positive....am I ever going to feel like that?????? The office is calling me Wed to set up the surgery...I want it last week, it can't come fast enough for me...Thanks for letting me blow off some emotional moments here....I guess all I have left is to pray all goes as planned....and the outcome is a good one...

icemantoo's picture
Posts: 3334
Joined: Jan 2010

Nine years ago this month I was diagnosed with RCC and had my surgery on 8.1.2002. I had barely ever heard the words Kidney Cancer and right out of the gate the first thing to come up was that I had to have a nepherectomy. Not fun. Well here I am 9 years later trying to help the newcomers. The fact that your doctor is considering a partial (they were not doing partials 9 years ago) suggests that the tumor or mass is on the smaller side and probably has not metastzised. That being said you are hopfully in the slightly more tham 50% of RCC patients who are fully cured by the surgery although there are follow up tests for years. I have been doing relatively fine since my surgery which was just after my 59th birthday. I went water skiing 11 months later. Lets see if you can do the same.

Best wishes,


donna_lee's picture
Posts: 1003
Joined: Feb 2009

Hey, just think, you'll have less junk in the trunk. Hah.
Margins just mean than the tumor they cut out will be examined while you are on the table -in lala land. If the edges or borders that they examine are clear of any cancer cells, they will stop cutting. If not, cut a little more. Examine. Decide what's next.

The vacation won't take your mind off all that is going on, but will distract you. Plan what you need to accomplish before surgery and make lists. As you lead up to "the day", check your list of items off. Call on friends and family to do what you need so they can feel like they are helping. I'm sure they are just as stressed as you are, and even more helpless.

I usually only talk about the odds I was given in the Cancer Support Group I attend, but this is designed to make you feel better, so here goes. May of '06:"You have a mass in your kidney, one or two in your liver, and maybe others we can't see on the CT. At this, Stage IV, we extimate 5-7 months. We can recommend palliative care, as there is no treatment."
Bye-Bye kidney, 1/2 liver, wedges in the liver, gall bladder and a set of nodes. Sure there were 2 recurrences in separate nodes over the next 2 years, both removed with surgery. And it has been 3 years now with no evidence of disease-and exactly 5 years to the day since I was told I had cancer.

Can;t say I waterskiid, but I haven't done that since high school anyway. I'm 68, work pretty much full time (own the business), have a huge yard, 4 grandkids to keep up with, several circles of friends, travel etc. And yes, I have regular check ups.

So, but on your big girl panties and decide to get on with it. You'll be a survivor also. Walk the survivor lap at the Relay for Life. And don't be afraid to talk about what you are going thru. You get angry, you deny it, you get depressed, you bargain, and everything in between. You get over it. And the cycle starts over. It's called grieving. We all go thru it. You are and will, too; but you'll come out the other end with a renewed determination to live your life after having cancer and make each day count.

Good luck as you embark on a journey that lasts the rest of a long life for you.

lbinmsp's picture
Posts: 266
Joined: Jun 2006

First, sorry you're joining the 'club'. But as you can see, lots of us are still here and supporting each other.

As for why this wasn't found before - you didn't mention the size of the tumor - if it is small perhaps there was a cyst that might have 'hidden' or 'masked' the tumor. I'm no expert, but am thinking it's a possibility.

Do not beat yourself up about being scared! Anyone who gets a cancer diagnosis goes through that! I was in complete denial from the moment I heard the word. Kept telling my doctors - 'until the fat lady sings (meaning I see the path report) - it's not cancer'. I knew I was just fooling myself but I guess I just needed denial for a while. When you say that others seemed 'so strong and positive' - that comes AFTER the fear and panic and denial subsides!

Do not be surprised if the surgery doesn't happen right away as you may need to have additional tests. First you'll need a 'pre-op physical' - required before any surgery. This will include a chest x-ray, EKG, blood work. Your doctor may also want you to have a bone scan and perhaps an ultrasound as well. These are all GOOD things! You want your surgeon to go in with as much information about you as possible. NO surprises.

CRY when you need to - laugh when you can - plan for your FUTURE! You DO have one - honestly!

Everone on the RCC forum is standing with you!

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