Finally, my story briefly

Kat23502
Kat23502 Member Posts: 179

I'll post on my "about me" page but I figured it was about time I posted a bit about my story. It's a bit convoluted so I'll keep it at a minimum. I'm a college professor that teaches in medical imaging (this includes CT, x-ray, and ultrasound) and I've actively worked in the hospital patient care setting for well over a decade as well before moving to academia full time. In January of 2014 I was demonstrating a new ultrasound machine and while scanning myself, saw what appeared to be a mass on my left kidney. While not a typical solid mass appearance I did go have a CT with and without contrast that day. One of my co-workers read the CT and issued the report, I also read the CT, there was zero enhancement, other than a small area where the contour of my kidney changed slightly, there was no indication of a mass. It was assumed to be something called a persistent lobulation (a bump in the kidney leftover from when my kidney developed). One year later almost to the day I was demonstrating a new machine and this time I saw the mass and knew immediately it was RCC. I wasn't sure how much the area had grown but this time it was a clearly defined mass. I had a CT within a day or two and this time there was a clear mass with definite enhancement. I called the urologist I knew I wanted and on February 16 I had a robotic assisted partial nephrectomy. Path report came back as a 2.9 cm clear cell RCC Fuhrman grade 2. This put me at stage T1a. I had a noncontast CT in June which was all clear and will have a with and without in October. So far, so good! Hopefully I'm done with it forever. I have a seven year old and it terrifies me to even think about this coming back. Anyway, that's it for now. Reading this forum has allowed me to keep my sanity through all of this and not allow panic to take over, for the most part. So, I appreciate you all and figured it was finally time to say hello!

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Comments

  • APny
    APny Member Posts: 1,995 Member
    edited October 2016 #2
    Hi and welcome, though I'm

    Hi and welcome, though I'm sorry you have to be here. Your chances for being rid of it permanently are excellent, though of course nothing is ever 100 percent. I too had a stage 1a RCC, and while I'm optimistic it's all over with, I still get anxious when it's check up time. Like in two weeks. All the best to you and most likely you'll be around to dance at your grandchildren's wedding :)

  • elaineL
    elaineL Member Posts: 6
    edited October 2016 #3
    glad you caught it

    Be thankful for how early you caught it. Keep up your appt. and scans and be very on top of it . Be proud you are holding it together, it is a tough one !

     

     

  • daisybud
    daisybud Member Posts: 529 Member
    edited October 2016 #4
    Hi Kat

    Welcome 

    I was also stage 1A grade 2. Had part lap this past February.  

    The people on this site are Great!  I also got anxious when I had 6 months mri followup. Just part of my new normal.

    Kim 

  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,359 Member
    Connections

    Kat,

     

    With all these connections maybe you can get thru to some of these surgeons who tell their patients they can go back to work in 3 weeks when they are not ready for that. Yes we do see posts complaining about that.

     

     

    Icemantoo

  • Footstomper
    Footstomper Member Posts: 1,237
    edited October 2016 #6
    Hi Kat

    I'm not sure whether it would be an advantage or not to be so knowledgeable of the process. Welcome

  • angie328
    angie328 Member Posts: 10
    Hi....

    New here too and I'm also so glad you found this early...amazes me how fast it grew in 1 year...are getting scans once or twice a year going to be the norm? I guess better safe then sorry...just curious. 

    You will be in my prayers and I would like to thank you again for your input on my situation.  

    Love and Hugs,

    Angie

  • Iggyrip
    Iggyrip Member Posts: 44
    Welcome Katt, this is a great

    Welcome Katt, this is a great site and great group of people. I am also new, and waiting for surgery. I have a 6cm mass on my upper right kidney. Found it by accident looking for something else.

    Wishing you a speedy recovery.

    Iggy

  • foxhd
    foxhd Member Posts: 3,181
    Good job Kat

    I have felt fortunate that my background as a physical therapist has helped me make far too many recoveries from injury, illness, and surgery. I have a masters in hospital management and and well versed in medical politics. I can usually get what I want although sometimes I get too absorbed in the role of being my own primary care advocate. My oncologist has told me that he enjoys my active participation and we can get down to the real business of addressing my health issues. I'm lucky. It works for me. How about you?

  • Jan4you
    Jan4you Member Posts: 1,330 Member
    edited October 2016 #10
    A warm, Welcome, Kat! Sorry

    A warm, Welcome, Kat! Sorry you had to even go through all this. Good you have availability to  catch this early.

    My hope is that this is now  going to be behind you, so you can finally relax and enjoy your life and your family!

    Hang in there!

    Hugs, Jan

  • JerzyGrrl
    JerzyGrrl Member Posts: 760
    edited October 2016 #11
    Hi, Kat

    Welcome to the club none of us want to join. 

    I'm impressed that you didn't just lose it right then and there while demoing your US magic - either time. Still, it's tricky when the professional vs the patient vs the ordinary human have to switch places quickly. 

    May you have many visits from "Uncle Ned" --

    Jerzy

  • sblairc
    sblairc Member Posts: 585
    Welcome. What a story, you have to tell.

    My goodness!! That is quite a story of your cancer. I'm so glad you are doing well. Welcome!!

  • hardo718
    hardo718 Member Posts: 853
    edited October 2016 #13
    Holy Moly

    That's an awesome bio!  How fortunate you are in a field that allowed you to have this finding so early!  Can you imagine if that was not the case?  May have been years before that little beast was found.  Someone's watching over you......you were placed in that field for a reason, besides the fact you're such a great resource.

    God Bless,

    Donna~

    Donna~

  • Allochka
    Allochka Member Posts: 993 Member
    edited October 2016 #14
    Welcome! I've never heard of

    Welcome! I've never heard of anyone diagnosing herself that way, what an extraordinary story! 

    Your chances of leaving it behind forever are awesome!

  • KrisKB123
    KrisKB123 Member Posts: 4
    New to the Club

    My internist ordered a Heart Scan for me, and when I called to make the appointment the woman doing the scheduling suggested that I "upgrade" and have a full body scan for an extra $500. I scheduled the full scan. Ironically, upon arrival at the facility, the young man doing the scans tried and tried to talk me out of it. My husband said "Hey we're here. Get it done!" A 9.5 cm mass was found on my left kidney. My internist called me and immediately scheduled a CT with and without contrast, and referred me to a urological surgeon in a university setting. The next opening was 4+ weeks away, but I understand this surgeon is superb. I had a radical nephrectomy on September 23 and came home 48 hours later. The results were a RCC Stage IIb. I am on post-op day 10 and still in a lot of pain - I am actually surprised since I typically have a very high pain tolerance. I have low energy and decreased appetite. Can anyone share their post op experience if you had something similar.

  • Footstomper
    Footstomper Member Posts: 1,237
    edited October 2016 #16
    Sounds familiar

    It does get better. I'm guessing you're having Physical therapy and doing the lung excercizes with the blowing thingamygig. It took me weeks to get to what I considered a satisfactory level. I also took a lot of powerful painkillers. I would guess that youre right at the end of the intense recovery period. If it continues then of course you need to phone your doc. But your body has taken a hell of a bashing with the surgery. I dont think anyone really expects the nature of the recovery period. I thought I would be back at work after two weeks. I was crazy.

  • Kat23502
    Kat23502 Member Posts: 179
    APny said:

    Hi and welcome, though I'm

    Hi and welcome, though I'm sorry you have to be here. Your chances for being rid of it permanently are excellent, though of course nothing is ever 100 percent. I too had a stage 1a RCC, and while I'm optimistic it's all over with, I still get anxious when it's check up time. Like in two weeks. All the best to you and most likely you'll be around to dance at your grandchildren's wedding :)

    Thanks! I hope your scans go

    Thanks! I hope your scans go well! I have my next scans in a couple of weeks also. 

  • Kat23502
    Kat23502 Member Posts: 179
    edited October 2016 #18
    elaineL said:

    glad you caught it

    Be thankful for how early you caught it. Keep up your appt. and scans and be very on top of it . Be proud you are holding it together, it is a tough one !

     

     

    There were plenty of times I

    There were plenty of times I felt like I wasn't holding it together so well!

  • Kat23502
    Kat23502 Member Posts: 179
    daisybud said:

    Hi Kat

    Welcome 

    I was also stage 1A grade 2. Had part lap this past February.  

    The people on this site are Great!  I also got anxious when I had 6 months mri followup. Just part of my new normal.

    Kim 

    New normal indeed! 

    New normal indeed! 

  • Kat23502
    Kat23502 Member Posts: 179
    edited October 2016 #20
    icemantoo said:

    Connections

    Kat,

     

    With all these connections maybe you can get thru to some of these surgeons who tell their patients they can go back to work in 3 weeks when they are not ready for that. Yes we do see posts complaining about that.

     

     

    Icemantoo

    Ha! Even with a partial

    Ha! Even with a partial robotic assisted, I was told 6 weeks out. Doctors need to be careful about pushing their patients and giving them false hope about being up and around so quickly. The surgery and subsequent healing takes so much out of you!

  • Kat23502
    Kat23502 Member Posts: 179
    hardo718 said:

    Holy Moly

    That's an awesome bio!  How fortunate you are in a field that allowed you to have this finding so early!  Can you imagine if that was not the case?  May have been years before that little beast was found.  Someone's watching over you......you were placed in that field for a reason, besides the fact you're such a great resource.

    God Bless,

    Donna~

    Donna~

    My surgeon said "You don't

    My surgeon said "You don't feel it right now but you're very lucky!" I know I was and am. I have access to things and people others don't and years ago I was put in this path for a reason. Like my anesthesiologist said, "you saved your own life!" Lucky indeed.