Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Beginning

We'll start at the beginning of the whole story:

About a year and a half or two years ago, my family doctor felt that my thyroid felt a little on the enlarged side, and decided to have blood work done to see if it was over or under active. The results of that blood test came back "normal", so he decided to have a thyroid ultrasound done. (This is like an ultrasound you have when you have a baby, but at the base of your neck.)

The results of that showed a small nodule on the left lobe of my thyroid, so he decided to just watch it at that point, having another ultrasound done six months later. When that one was done, I think it showed it hadn't grown, so a thyroid scan was done (I swallowed a radioactive pill and they took pictures of the thyroid to see how it was working.) I remember that also coming back "normal".

At that point, my doctor wanted me to just talk to a specialist, and have him take care of it. I met with him, and I was to go back a year later  for a check-up (which was two weeks ago, on May 26th).

At the May 26th appointment, I was just expecting it to be check-up, only doing an ultrasound. Right when I was about to get my blood pressure taken, the nurse told me I might get a biopsy done if the ultrasound showed any changes (yeah, my blood pressure was extremely high...they had to redo it!). The nodule appeared to have grown (to about .75cm), so he wanted to do a biopsy. I didn't really handle it well, especially because I wasn't really expecting it (I also think he didn't let the anesthesia set quite long enough).

The results showed that the cells are consistent with the Papillary Carcinoma Cancer cells (we won't know if it's cancer for sure until after they take it out & test it), so they wanted to be sure and get that part of the thyroid out. If the nodule was bigger than 1cm, they would take it all out. The right lobe looks normal with no nodules. I ultimately have the choice of taking all or just the left lobe out, which I hope to get a better idea of what to do after I talk to the surgeon.

All I really know about the surgery is it's supposed to be a week long recovery, so I'll heal pretty quickly, and in the hospital over night at most. I'll know more after my consultation, which is scheduled for June 15th. I had the receptionist put me on a cancellation list, so if someone cancels, I'm hoping to be called in sooner. I'm hoping to speed this along as much as possible, because on August 14th, I'll be off the insurance. I'd love to have the surgery done before the end of June, but who knows if that can happen.

I'm mostly nervous about the anesthesia, knowing what they'll be doing to me. I'm very nervous about the whole surgery. I'm not a fan of things like this. I can't wait for that part to be done with!

I'll share more information about nodules and the Papillary Cancer in one of the next posts, and I'll be updating after my June 15th appointment.