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Husband's surgery yesterday

Annabelle41415's picture
Posts: 6477
Joined: Feb 2009

My husband's surgery went well - longer than expected due to scar tissue, but successful.  I'm not sure if I've mentioned before that my cancer surgery was the same date as his 6 years ago (colorectal cancer).  What an anniversay to have to share Frown, but I'm doing fine now and praying that he does well after this also.  They removed the complete kidney.  He will have to have six month scans for the next couple years.  We will get the pathology report back in about a week.  Didn't realize that they stage the tumor as well.  Doctor told me they always stage two parts of the cancer, a whole body stage and a tumor stage.  Just never knew this and my doctor never told me what stage mine was.  The plan was for him to go home today, but he said he wasn't ready because he couldn't eat anything so they kept him.  Just was wondering how long your recovery time was.  His doctor told him about 3 weeks.  Please let me know your experiences.  Hubby will be home tomorrow.  Thanks again for your concern and for your input.


Posts: 337
Joined: Nov 2014

Hi, Kim,

Some cancers are different with regards to staging. I know that they all have different size stagings. For instance, pancreatic cancer stage 1 is only 2 cm or less.  With kidney cancers, the stage refers to the level of invasion of the tumor into the surrounding areas.  Then there is a tumor size staging that refers more to its size. 

T1a is less than 4 cm, confined to kidney.  T1b is less than 7cm, confined to kindey. T2 is more than 7cm, confined to kidney. T3 is invasion of renal fat of primary tumor. So the tumor could potentially be smaller than 7cm but still invade the fat. T4 is invasion into the blood vessels of the kidney. 

Staging generally for kidney cancer is 1: 7 cm or less and confined to kidney, 2: More than 7 cm but confined to kidney, 3: Cancer is any size and found only in kidney and 1 lymph node or In the fatty tissue of the kidney or blood vessels And 4: cancer has spread.

So the first has only to do with tumor size, the other is a more accurate stage of where the cancer is from a prognosis standpoint. They will also do a Fuhrman grading of the tumor which will tell you the level of aggressiveness. AND there are subtypes of RCC that they will check for; the most common is clear cell renal cell carcinoma (what I had).

All of this info should drive his future plan for treatment. In my case, I had a very small (2.8 cm) tumor and was stage 1. So my only treatment was the surgery and scans. 6 months for 2 years then yearly after that.  But if the pathology reveals any curveballs, they may get more or less aggressive with future treatment. Hope all this info helps!

- Jay

icemantoo's picture
Posts: 3262
Joined: Jan 2010



Your husband is now on the road to a hopefully uneventful and complete recovery. The first week or 10 days are going to feel pretty bad. Slowly he will feel normal,but still weak by 6 weeks and gradulary better over the coming months.


Make sure if he is still on pain medication that he starts taking stool softeners as no one in their right mind wants to be constpated a week after a neph.




APny's picture
Posts: 1982
Joined: Mar 2014

I had zero appetite for about a week so I had to force myself to eat something light like broth, soft boiled eggs, toast. In the hospital I ate practically nothing. Make sure he drinks lots of water and get him to walk as much as possible. Stool softener is a good idea. I took pain killers for about 2 weeks, tapering off from every four hours to every six. No reason to suffer, and if you're in pain you won't want to move. And moving is important. Also, make sure they give him a spirometer to take home so he can do breathing exercises to keep his lungs clear.

foroughsh's picture
Posts: 775
Joined: Oct 2014

Kim, very glad its successfuly done, wish him best pathology report and uneventful recovery. Jay, is "confined to kidney" same as "confined to renal capsule"?

Jojo61's picture
Posts: 1310
Joined: Oct 2013

Hi Annabelle....I am glad to hear the surgery went well. Now on to the healing! Jay provided a terrific summary on staging.

I had stage 3, grade 2....the only treatment was nephrectomy! I was off for 6 weeks and was happy for that recovery time. Even though your body looks healed from the outside, it takes a long time to recover inside. Keep us posted on how the pathology report goes!



Jan4you's picture
Posts: 1325
Joined: Oct 2013

OH, Kim, whew.. glad this surgery is now over for you both!

What an anniversary reminder. Hope his recovery goes smoothly.

He is one lucky guy to have YOU by his side.

Keep us posted as to how he's doing.

Hugs, Jan

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