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Surgery Done 4/29!!!

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Hi,

Sorry for my little absence as work, school & preparing for surgery was hectic. My surgery was done laparoscopically. Under my left breast my incisions look like -__- with a - right under my breast. I was in the hospital for 2 days and didn't get the best treatment. They never worried about me having a bowel movement and I was on a clear liquid diet the entire time. I had a catheter for 1 day. The only pain I ever felt was at my incision sites and that was it. Other than that I questioned my BM but none of the nurses did a thing about it. I was sent home. About a day later I had a fever after having the absolute most horrific BM in my life & I've never been one who had issues with having a BM. Did I mention I am a nurse too? Pretty hard to be a nurse & patient at the same time. I went back to the ER on Thursday (5/2) for a fever of 101.6. I was feeling pretty terrible & thought I should go back to the hospital just in case. So I went back & my body fought the fever au natural & won! I also found out that my 5.6 cm tumor was indeed cancer. It was confined to my left kidney & my Dr took the kidney, adrenal gland & surrounding fat out. I always went with my instincts & researched all of my hospitals medical journals, to ensure that I was making the best decision for my future. When being told you have or had cancer, there are steps that one must take before getting to the next step. For the last 3 yrs (since knowing about the tumor), I lived my life as though it was benign cause I always felt it was (real dad had a kidney removed in the 60's). I am so grateful for the way I handled this process. I am almost 1 week post-op & got over the BM issues along with hemmorrhoid issues too. I do have metal staples that I expect to be removed at my post-op appt on 5/10. I haven't taken a pain med since last Thursday, other than Motrin to handle the feeling of my insides adjusting. I can not tell you that you won't have pain but I can tell you that it is managable and that you will be ok. I walk, clean my house, drive & do everything that everyone else does except I rest when I need too. I listen to my body & I will probably take the 3 weeks off work as my Dr expected. Word to the wise, if you need to cough, cough with your hand over your surgery site or use a pillow as a splint. If you need to sneeze, sneeze with your mouth open & it won't be so bad. This entire experience hasn't been easy but to be told you had cancer NOT have cancer, is a blessing! The only choice we have, is how we choose to handle ourselves. I never felt sick or had any cancer symptoms but I was tired all the time. I chalked it up to school, full time job & private life but I believe it was more than that. Since my surgery, I have had more energy than I can remember & it's only going on 1 week. I would like to offer hope to all and know that you can live successful, long lives with 1 healthy kidney & NO, your healthy kidney won't have to work for 2 when 1 is removed. Your healthy kidney will work the same as it did prior to surgery, as our body learns to adjust. So, I am back and here to stay.  ;0)

cran1's picture
cran1
Posts: 139
Joined: Mar 2013

Good to hear Pink! Hang in there.

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Thank you Cran!!  Laughing

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 3227
Joined: Jan 2010

Pnmk,

 

Gounds line your surgery and recovery went very  well.

 

Icemantoo

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2799
Joined: Nov 2011

iceman, please don't ever think of trying out as a ventriloquist!

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 3183
Joined: Oct 2011

Good job Pink! It is weird being a health care provider and a patient isn't it? For me, I felt my care was good. I appreciated everyones effort knowing how busy they are. I also think that having a better understanding of patient care made my recovery easier. Not  easy but easier. Of course it is going to hurt but I think we deal with it better. We've seen it too many times.

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Thank you Foxhd!!! It was so bad that my roommate complained about my care to the supervisor. I thought I was being difficult but I later realized that it wasn't the case. The surgery & recovery went so much better than I could've ever expected. I thought I would be on pain meds for a while & I haven't needed anything. I had more pain from the BM issues than from my surgery. LOL.....I totally agree with you & for some reason, I can't wait to have a TALL glass of wine & swim. hahahaha

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Thank you Icemantoo!! I think it did too.

MDCinSC's picture
MDCinSC
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

I should have read this before asking all my questions on the other post! Embarassed

Congratulations on a successful surgery and thanks for all the post op tricks!  I'm filing those all away! I hope that your life is greatly improved now that this is behind you!  (I'm stick gonna hang around and watch for your posts in anticipation of the next few weeks! LOL)

Again, congratualtions!

Michael

 

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Thank you MDCinSC!!! It's ok, I totally understand. This whole process is confusing and hard to say how you will handle the surgery. It will depend on your overall health, pain tolerance & age. I am 41, never had surgery & only have Diabetes type 2 (controlled with pills, diet & exercise) & I have a high pain tolerance. I have a lot of life to live and out of all cancers, kidney cancer is probably one of the best to get. It is highly treatable with surgery & the reoccurance rate of cancer is very low. I had the mass for over 3 yrs & it grew from 2.6cm to 5.3cm without doing anything else but growing. It won't be easy but nothing worthwhile ever is. You will have to chalk this up as a learning lesson & what learning lesson will depend on you. Thank you.....Laughing

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2799
Joined: Nov 2011

"the reoccurance rate of cancer is very low."

Where did that statement come from?!!

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 3227
Joined: Jan 2010

Probably from me, the Iceman. The last time I disagreed with Tex he ignored me for a month.

Anyway, for what it is worth, the recurrance rate for RCC after surgery for small tumors without anything negative on the path report is very low.

 

Icemantoo

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2799
Joined: Nov 2011

Leaving aside the jokes, iceman, the issue isn't about small tumors with  no negative aspects - I was quoting Donna's unqualified statement that the recurrence rate of cancer is very low, which, alas, as we are all aware is very far from the truth. 

In her own case it doesn't hold - her tumor wasn't small and it was highly aggressive if it grew 2.7 cm in only 3 years! 

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

The statement clearly came from me. From all of the American Association of Urology medical journals that I have read, along with much research that I have done does indeed give me that conclusion. I never said it was 100% nor that no one would have reoccurance. Maybe you should re-read what I wrote or maybe you should do your own research & come to your own conclusions. Reoccurance of cancer when you are or were at a Stage 1, is relatively low. I've read the statistics till I couldn't stand it anymore and I really don't need to validate my qualifications. Me being here & having gone thru my surgery is enough qualification you or anyone else need.

Donna

 

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2799
Joined: Nov 2011

Donna, I didn't say you were unqualified.  I said that your statement was unqualified - that is, that you expressed it as referring to all cancers of whatever stage, grade or location when you said

"the reoccurance rate of cancer is very low". 

That comes over as a bit of a surprise to uncomprehending folks like me (having had recurrences in four different locations within six months of surgery). 

I was inclined to suggest that you might want to take care to have adequate monitoring, since your tumor was not particularly small at 5.6 cm and it had grown exceptionally fast, which I would treat as something to pay due regard to.

Still, what do I know?  I bow humbly before your superior knowledge and shall try to follow the advice you gave me that -

"Maybe you should re-read what I wrote or maybe you should do your own research & come to your own conclusions."

ClaraW
Posts: 64
Joined: Jun 2012

"The reoccurance rate of cancer is very low" is obviously a quote from a medical journal with high impact factor. Tex, you and I have been reading and quoting "TV Weekly" magazines for too long.

 

Cheers,

C

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2799
Joined: Nov 2011

I guess you're right Clara Laughing

How's the SIL?

MDCinSC's picture
MDCinSC
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

When did this place turn into Facebook?

Don't we all have enough to worry about without turning this into a combat zone?

It isn't necessary for commentary to turn snarky or pedantic.

There is already enough on our plates.

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 945
Joined: Apr 2013

Certainly not me, this is my second time around. 

Djinnie

Galrim's picture
Galrim
Posts: 305
Joined: Apr 2013

Whether we like them or not.

Recurrence stats: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2735023/

Prognostic factors: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1471767/

Read and understand before throwing statements and starting arguments. Just a general recommendation...

/G

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

I refuse to argue. I will continue to come to my own conclusions & remain positive regardless of you or anyone else. I can't believe that I am on CSN & having to defend myself. I have much better things to do as I would think you all would too. You don't have to agree with with me but you don't have the right to come after me either. I don't even experience this behavior on facebook & it is beyond me. So please....if you have nothing nice, positive or encouraging to say then DON'T BOTHER. No one needs it, considering we are all in this together.

jcoscia's picture
jcoscia
Posts: 16
Joined: Apr 2013

pinkstar I know how you feel. I posted on here a few times and even though I was quoting my Dr's, every word I typed was nit picked. Sad really!

Galrim's picture
Galrim
Posts: 305
Joined: Apr 2013

...referring to the 0,2 percent thread, I recall it as you having read every stage 1 horror story in here and built a monster out of them, and I/we just tried to calm you down. Apologies if that came forward as nit pickimg, that was not the intention.

/G

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Thank you JCoscia!! Laughing

Galrim's picture
Galrim
Posts: 305
Joined: Apr 2013

My comment wasnt directed to you personally, but towards the mentioned harsh tone in some posts. My point basically being, if anyone states something as a fact which has a relevance to others, when talking about something as critical as our disease, and especially if arguing, at least back it up with some kind of reference.

/G

Eims's picture
Eims
Posts: 423
Joined: Feb 2013

AMEN to that pinkstar.  There are a couple of people on here that would argue with themselves if there was no one else around hahahahaha

Eims x

pinkstar's picture
pinkstar
Posts: 53
Joined: Mar 2013

Thank you Eims for understanding...Laughing

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 653
Joined: Oct 2012

G,

I am certainly not looking to further upset anyone here - nor spark a fight. But I too am very fond of "facts".  Except they are often totally contradictory.

For example, the link you suggested we consult for "recurrence stats" states this as its conclusion:

"In our experience, tumor size is significantly associated with synchronous metastases and asynchronous metastases following nephrectomy. Our results suggest that risk of metastatic disease for patients with tumors <3cm is negligible."

OK, that certainly seems straightforward enough.  Except that particular study was published in 2009.  Now here comes a paper that was published just a few weeks ago:

"Small Kidney Tumors Potentially Dangerous, Worth Treating"

"Even those renal cell carcinomas (RCCs) that are smaller than 4 cm may put patients at risk for aggressive cancer, according to a new study presented at the 28th Annual European Association of Urology Congress in Milan, Italy.

Sandra Steffens, MD, from the Hannover University Medical School in Germany, who presented the abstract, indicated that despite the fact that “many clinicians have regarded small renal cell cancer as having a benign biologic behavior,” smaller tumors may present with nodal or distant metastases.

This information differs from that of a study presented in February at the 2013 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium by Huang et al, which suggested that surveillance of patients with these small kidney tumors may be a safe alternative to surgery ... “These results have significant implications since the rate of patients diagnosed with small renal masses is increasing and nonoperative surveillance protocols are currently being used in patients with small renal tumor,” the researchers wrote in their abstract. “Our data confirm that small RCCs also have an aggressive potential and should be adequately treated.”

http://www.cancernetwork.com/rcc/content/article/10165/2138364

Galrim's picture
Galrim
Posts: 305
Joined: Apr 2013

...look at the statistical mass and especially the approach and reasoning in the two surveys. Which is why I refer to the one I quote. Though its older it, is from a purely statistical viewpoint more reliable.

Quote: "Reasons for the recent discordant literature regarding tumor size and risk of metastases are not entirely clear. Klatte et al reported on 1,208 small renal mass patients (4cm or less) including 72 patients with metastases at presentation, noting that 6–7% of patients with tumors <2cm had metastatic disease.7 This is in stark contrast to our data, which includes 2,691 patients including 162 with metastatic disease at presentation and 1,227 patients with tumors <4cm, and the data reported by Kunkle et al,6 which includes 110 patients with metastatic disease at presentation matched with 250 controls, where not a single case of metastatic disease was observed in a patient with a tumor <2cm. It is plausible to conclude that the discordant results are in part related to unique referral patterns. While the report from Klatte et al included data from France, Italy, and Greece, the only center in the United States was UCLA which is a large referral center for metastatic RCC. We would suggest that the rare patient with metastatic disease and a very small renal tumor would be more likely to present to UCLA for an evaluation although the percentage of patients UCLA contributed to the combined database was not reported.7 Nevertheless, our data, where we used a relatively strict definition of metastases, supports the notion that as tumor size increases so does the risk of metastatic disease. This is supported by Kunkle et al where the definition of metastatic disease required biopsy confirmation.7 The results from Klatte et al, where M stage was assigned “according to 2002 definitions” although 56% had biopsy confirmation, remain intriguing and thus, further investigation is needed."

Anyway, my point was more of a general one; If throwing numbers and statements in here, please back them up somewhat, to the benefit of all. Then we can always discuss statistical mass validity afterwards :-)

/G

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 653
Joined: Oct 2012

Agreed. Of course, you do know what they say...  "There are lies, damn lies, and then there are statistics..." :)

todd121's picture
todd121
Posts: 1425
Joined: Dec 2012

My own tumor was initially staged as 1, but turned into a Stage 3 once they did the pathology simply because of location. This experience led me to realize that it's important not only how large the tumor is, but where it is. I reailize it's hard to track this information, but it seems important since access to blood, adrenal or lymphatic system is one of the major ways it spreads. That's something these studies seem to gloss right over...

I thought when I was talking to my RCC docs and my uncle oncologist, that 5 year recurrence rates for even small tumors were in the 5-8% range. That's relatively small compared to a Stage 3 tumor like mine (40%), but I would hardly call 5-8% "negligible" or "rare". It's between 1 out of 20 and 1 out of 10.

Staying positive is great. But being following things closely and taking good care of yourself would still be prudent even with a small tumor in Stage 1. Long term survival is best in patients who stay on top of their health and advances in their disease's treatments. It's good to catch stuff as early as you can.

Disagreement doesn't mean we don't wish each other well. But we also want to make sure accurate information is being passed out. I know I got some inaccurate information from some of the healthcare workers I saw. We hope that by speaking up, the truth gets out so that we all can benefit from it. We can disagree and still support one another. We all share the same goal here and I think we all wish each other to be healed and well from this damn disease.

Todd

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 945
Joined: Apr 2013

Very well put Todd I could not agree more:)

I know from personal experience how important it is to remain pro active. I had a small tumour removed in 2003, recently another tumour was discovered on the old site, it had probably started growing about 5 yrs after the removal of the first one. It has gone now for the last time hopefully, I will probably be a little more paranoid about my check ups in future.

 

Djinnie

 

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 653
Joined: Oct 2012

I fully agree with you Todd. I have absolutely no doubt that we all wish each other well here.  I also happen to think that polite disagreement is a very good thing too.  It spurs us to focus more thought and attention on whatever the issue might be.

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2799
Joined: Nov 2011

Todd's last paragraph was particularly appropriate, especially his firs two sentences:

"Disagreement doesn't mean we don't wish each other well. But we also want to make sure accurate information is being passed out."

That is the purpose and the value of forums like this

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