Saturday, June 12, 2004

Day 1 post op

Wake up, take pain meds, eat, drink, surf, get wuzzy from pain meds, lay down, watch tv, doze in and out of sleep. Repeat.

Tommorow I hope to be able to shower and get out of the house for a bit of girly social time tommorow afternoon.

Kyle just helped me change the dressing, and I saw the wound for the first time. Its about 2 1/2 to 3 inches long with a total of 10 stiches!

My doctor says its either "nothing or lymphoma, probably Hodgkin's." As I mentioned, he seemed relieved when he took it out and it looked like a lymphoma. I am currently operating under the assuption that on Friday I will be officially diagnosed with Hodkin's Lymphoma. Kyle, however, prefers to go with denial and thinks its going to come back as nothing. I like Kyle's thinking, but I'm trying to be realistic without being overly paranoid. They took a rather large, lumpy, lymph node out of me, and the first biopsy has already come back "inconclusive malignency" but with several suspicios cells. Not enough to diagnos, but enough suspicious cells to be concerned.

So why am I assuming Hodgkin's?
1) From what I have read, if you had to pick a cancer, Hodgkin's is one of the best ones. Its easy to treat, with very high cure rates. So, in a way I am being positive. Its most likely something, and Hodgkin's is much better than the scary sarcomas my doctor first suspected.
2) My symptoms are: an enlarged, painless lymph node and a very low grade fever (99.5-100). As much as I would have appriciated a sudden, unexpected weight loss, I didn't have it. Nor do I have nightsweats. I do itch, but I don't know if its any worse than normal since I have always had dry skin.
3) I had mono in 1993. Esptein-Barr is associated with Hodgkin's. 40-50% of Hodgkin's patients test postive for the Esptein-Barr virus.
4) I'm 29. Hodgkin's is common in two age groups: early adulthood (age 15-40, usually 25-30) and late adulthood (after age 55).

Now I am going to provide some links to information about Hodgkin's because if you are reading this a) you probably know me pretty well and b) you might be a bit worried and want to know more. So, I encourage you to read these links. Short story: its not going to be a cake walk, but it could be so much worse.

Yahoo Health on Hodgkin's.
National Cancer Institute's Hodgkin's Guidebook
Natioanl Institutes of Health's Medline page on Hodgkin's


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