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Kidney cancer

(13 Posts)
peanutpie Wed 28-Sep-11 22:56:33


I've just had half of my right kidney removed due to having kidney cancer. I didn't know that it was kidney cancer until the analysis after the operation. I had the operation in July. I went to the doctors in mid May with tummy/back discomfort which lead to an ultrasound, and then CT scan, which lead to the operation.

I have two small children, aged 4yrs and 1yrs, and I'm 38. It has been a nightmare as the operation meant I couldn't look after the children so we've had people helping out all summer. Then of course there has been the shock of the cancer diagnosis.

I don't have to have any more treatment by the way. The cancer has been treated by being removed as it was a low grade early stage cancer . Anyone out there had something similar? It's been such a bolt out of the blue.

cakesandale Thu 29-Sep-11 11:34:27

Hi Peanut Pie

I don't have any experience of kidney cancer, but if you visit the Tamoxifen 13 thread you will find a long running chat between people who have mostly had breast cancer, although some have been found to be false alarms and just stayed around becuase they had become friends: we also have one or two with different forms of this shit disease. When you get there we may be talking about cake, or wine, or TV programmes, but we are all there as a support and to help each other through. You can say anything you want and we will try to help. Most of all, we have kids, we have had cancer, we do know a bit about how you probably feel. x

Squiglettsmummy2bx Thu 29-Sep-11 11:38:48

Hi peanutpie,
This happened to my mum when I was 14. She kept being told she was going through the menopause until her kidney exploded & they operated & found the tumour too. That was 16 years ago & she is still fighting fit with just one kidney. It was a shock for us all at the time though.
Hope you are feeling back to normal soon x

peanutpie Thu 29-Sep-11 14:39:25

Thanks Squiglettsmummy2bx. It's good to know it happened to someone else and then that was the end of it. My consultant is pretty convinced that it will not return and that removal of the offending half kidney should sort it once and for all.
Cakesandale I'll take a look at the thread you suggest.

MaryAnnSingleton Thu 29-Sep-11 14:51:15

peanutpie- poor love- a cancer diagnosis is a huge shock - keep what your consultant has said in your mind- he won't be telling you things that aren't true. Please pop over to tamoxifen thread as Cakes has suggested - loads of support there.
My younger brother had kidney cancer (i believe Wilms tumour) -it was very advanced when he was treated (surgery,chemotherapy and radiotherapy) so I do understand a little about it.

HazeltheMcWitch Fri 30-Sep-11 01:25:13

Hello peanutpie. i've not had kidney cancer either, but I have lost one kidney to cancer - of the adrenal gland (they are little glands that sit on top of the kidneys). I had lots of radiotherapy, and am now 'no evidence of disease'.

How have you healed - all ok? Did you have keyhole or open surgery?

peanutpie Fri 30-Sep-11 12:49:49


I had open surgery. I've got a 8" or 9" diagaonal scar that runs from above my belly button to my side. (and it's sore today!) I'm about 12 weeks post op and reasonably back to normal for my day to day duties. However can see that it'll take the same amount of time again though to get my 'va va voom' back or rather the energy that means I will actually 'feel' normal. Especially with the pesky smalls (or rather my lovely children) taking up my energy.

My kidney cyst/tunour thing was next to my adrenal gland and the doctors weren't sure until after the op where it was coming from. HazeltheMcWitch glad to hear that have no evidence of the disease. I've got a CT scan to check my leftover kidney in July.

I've found this so shocking. However at the same time we just got on with it. It was about 6 weeks from the first doctors appt to the operation. However that was a rather manic 6 weeks as we moved house, had a holiday in France and prepared our old house for rental! And of course, we had to put a plan in place for me to be laid up for 6-8 weeks. We had grandparents to stay look after me and the kids for that time, which was helpful but also quite trying all in the same house.

As I say, I think I still feel shell shocked! How long does the shock last?? We don't have any cancer in our family and it's the last thing I would have been concerned about!

MaryAnnSingleton Fri 30-Sep-11 13:15:34

I think the shock last a while - I'm 2 years on from a breast cancer diagnosis-treatment over except for tamoxifen yet I still think of it every day and can't quite believe it happened.

HazeltheMcWitch Fri 30-Sep-11 14:59:16

peanutpie, mine was open surgery also and I too have pretty impressive scarring! Well, I flip between feeling that it is impressive, and a 'badge of honour', to hating it, hating what my body has become! My scar is also very itchy. Is yours itchy? Are you looking after it well, massaging it (you can use anything, gentle body lotion or oils) to help stop lumps and bumps forming?

Re the energy, it will take as long as it takes. Don't underestimate the toll that the cancer, and the op has taken on you, and be gentle with yourself. I probably took it a bit too fast, wanted to be 'back to normal' asap; in hindsight this was a mistake.

And the shock? Mine was absolutely worst in the time between finding 'a lump' and having the op. I think my time lag was 7 weeks, and during this time I literally could not think of anything else. I was useless at work, useless at home, and very, very snappy. I just wanted that thing out of me. I really could barely function. So am frankly amazed that you managed so much during your 6 weeks!!

I think rather than shock, my issue (post op, with full diagnosis), was one of acceptance. The 'why me?'. I also did not want to tell many people about it, and still hate talking about it. I really hated that it dominated my life so much, and really resented it, and what it had done to me, resented all the appointments. Basically, I was very, very angry!

So now, I am nearly 3 yrs post-diagnosis, and 6 months since my treatment ended, and for the first time actually, I don't think of it everyday - MaryAnn, your post just made me realise this - thanks! That's something to celebrate, right?

MaryAnnSingleton Fri 30-Sep-11 15:12:06

certainly is something to celebrate smile !

HazeltheMcWitch Fri 30-Sep-11 15:27:01

Thanks MaryAnn, maybe I shall bake something?! I obv 'recognise' you from the GBBO thread! Fingers crossed you will soon realise that you've not thought about 'it' for a while too...

If only there was an adrenal version of THIS I don't want a stupid badge. Peanut, you will have to get one instead!

MaryAnnSingleton Fri 30-Sep-11 18:02:38

Yes -bake a mousse cake !! Mary Anne to win grin I love those plush things btw - I wanted a spleen (I don't have one -a real one that is !!)
It's hard not to think of bc because of taking tamoxifen every day but am sure it'll all become a distant memory before long.

peanutpie Sun 02-Oct-11 19:42:52

I love the idea of one of those 'cuddly kidneys', I'll have to put one my Christmas list!

HazeltheMcWitch it's so helpful to read about how you feel about stuff. I find myself constantly telling the story of what happened and, therefore, missing out on how I actually feel. With regards to resentment, I think the major resentment I feel is missing out on about two months of my kid's lives, particularly the baby as she will definitely be the last.

I managed to squeeze so much in between the first doc's appt and the operation as my consultant managed to carefully leave me thinking that it may be benign....he barely mentioned cancer at all to be honest. Rather he sort of bulldozed me onwards by talking about the operation and the hassle involved in the recovery, and that I'd need help to look after the kids.

Looking forward to this being a distant memory. I think my CT scan next July will also be a good thing to be out of the way. That said I'm being told that the risk of any reoccurence is very small.


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