Thought I was done...Not quite out of the woods yet

So I thought that as of March 15th I was free and clear after chemo and two major surgeries. This is what my doc's told me and everything looked good on the scans.

But as of last Thursday when I thought I was going in for my last CT at MSK in NYC (I live in Vermont so its not really convenient to get down there. Yes they are great but I wish It were closer for my parents sake so they wouldn't have to help me get down there and get back...but anyway, I digress).

They found a growth on my lung that had gotten larger sense my last scan. Everything they have taken out so far has been either dead tissue or benign teratomas. The thing about teratomas is that they can continue to grow and can possibly turn back into live cancer in the future.

Surgery has been scheduled for next Wednesday. Luckily this one will be done laparoscopicly rather than my past two which required being open from sternum to pelvis. So in-patient recovery will be pretty short, 2-3 days.

Overall Im not sure how I feel. I think most of all Im annoyed, but another part of me is kind of worried that things like this will continue to happen. Another but much much smaller part of me worries that it might come back in a more problematic and major way. Has any of this happened to other people in a similar way? How did you deal with it?


  • 6 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Good luck James. I'm still relatively new to this whole thing myself. I actually go in for my first real check up after completing treatment tomorrow.

    I'm sure you'll find the help you're looking for.
  • I'm really sorry to hear you have to have more surgery, in my opinion the uncertainty is the worse thing with cancer... I can never get the worry that my melanoma is going to come back anytime out of my head so I feel paranoid but statistically it really isn't an unreasonable concern. Every time I have another atypical spot on my skin removed (which is every three months or so) I get pretty anxious waiting for results- I just try my best to distract myself playing video games, play with my dog, browse the internet randomly, etc. Anyway, hope it all goes well for you!
  • melissamelissa Community Member
    a couple of weeks ago i was faced with the possibility of another surgery, depending on the results of my PET scan. Luckily, the scan didn't show active cancer cells, only scarring from the radiation. That was beyond wonderful news for me. If surgery was necessary, it would have to be a larger area than my first, and with the brain, thats not a good thing. I risked losing all left side function, the ability to speak and walk. I was terrified!! But that s the thing with this type of cancer. It does not go away. There is no cure. It will always come back. I just never know when or how bad it will be. I just have to do what i can with the time in between.

    i don;t know if this helps. sorry.
  • Hey

    What's your status update? I recently found out my cancer is back and possibly spread.. not sure it actually went are you feeling?
  • lust4life;4605 said:
    What's your status update? I recently found out my cancer is back and possibly spread.. not sure it actually went away.

    So sorry you've gotten that news. I found out about 3 months ago that mine had spread to my lungs. This whole "incurable" thing scares me beyond words. I don't know now to explain what I am doing to cope other than to say that I am trying to live my life as best I can. That and loud music and lots of chocolate. :-)

    semi-random question - for those of you who have been told you are going to be dealing with this for the rest of your life, how do you deal when people make comments or ask questions about this latest treatment being the "cure"? Mostly I just let them go, but I always feel a little weird about that .
  • hey

    Ok so I'm experimenting with other stuff than just running for my second round of chemo...i'm actually going through light therapy at the moment to see if that helps any...they've had a lot of success stories from those that were sent home because there was nothing else left to do. and just a heads up which I'm sure you might already know...cancer's #1 food is sugar...don't believe anyone who says that nutrition is not part of the doctor's also told me there is no "cure" per say... something they were just going to keep a close eye on (regular check ups, etc). but how do we know if we're home free? Yes .. live day to day.. but I'm pretty paranoid at this point thanks to the short time it took for this recurrence to far as dealing w/people...I just let them know my status for the moment because clearly we don't know what tomorrow will bring... or hopefully not bring :)