Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Surgery and Guardians of the Universe

Over the weekend thoughts:
Warning to parents who are dealing with cancer in anyway, if you want to avoid violence, or if you don't want to expose your child to swearing, look out for this movie. I enjoyed it overall. My kiddo enjoyed it overall. But at the beginning of the movie there was a opening scene with a little boy at the hospital with his mom dying of cancer. (She looked terrible...) My little guy leaned over during a part of the scene where there was a close up on the dying mom and asked "Mommy, will you look like that?" I whispered back, "I don't expect it." Sigh... Hard part of the day but he didn't say anything else and just enjoyed the film.

Waiting is hard. The surgeon postponed the appointment for a day. Glad to get into talk.
We talked for 50 minutes with him.
He was very positive and confident.
I walked away feeling ok. Not thrilled of course with any of this but ok. 
So, here's the deal... I have a mass- infiltration by lymphoepithelioma-like carcinoma in my right lower lung. It is non-small cell lung cancer.
I also have a growth on my lymph nodes.

He believes he can operate and remove both.
He would cut on my right side in three places- one for the surgery, one for removal of lobe of lung and lymph nodes, and one for camera.
I would have a video assistant thoracoscopic surgery.
He would remove my complete right lower lobe of my lung- there are 3 parts to the lung. He would also take out all the lymphatic and adjacent lymph nodes. 
The day before the surgery I would need to check in during daytime hours and do a lung function objective test. It would be at the hospital where I've had most of the other operations and radiation treatment. 
I would be checked in and need to spend the night at the hospital and then the next day would be the operation.

The risks: 
There are risks since this is a major operation and invasive.
1. I could get a wound infection.
2. I could get pneumonia or some other type of chest infection.
3. I could have bleeding since he is cutting through many blood vessels to remove the lobe of the lung.
4. I could have an airleak from the lung recession.
5. I could have lymph node leaks.

I would have pain but it would be under Dr. control with medication.

Recovery time- with my age, he expects me to quickly recover.
The day after the surgery he'd have me sit up.
The day following that he'd want me up and walking around.
He thinks I might even have better lung capacity after a year than I do now with the exercises he'll prescribe afterwards, etc.

He would keep massage devices on my legs for at least two days to avoid deep vein thrombosis in the legs... also they'd be on there during the surgery.

I would need to stay in the hospital for around five days.

I would need around 4 weeks to fully recover.
After 3 weeks, he would expect me to begin chemotherapy. Chemo cycles might be once every 3 weeks for 4 times. Chemo treatment all depends on assessing the removed lung/lymph nodes and after evaluating them, they can classify the stage of cancer I'm at... although my other dr. already said I am at stage 3 since it is in my lymph nodes.

He expects to do the surgery next week mid week- maybe Wed or Thurs.

Breathing a little easier (hah) since I qualify for surgery. Can't believe I'm going thru this again. 
Shall just enjoy the week ahead as much as I can...

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