Friday, March 2, 2012

Good News/Bad News, Flank Pain

Well just to update, I had all my scans and x-ray and saw my NS on Tuesday. A long day but surprisingly I coped a lot better than I thought I would. I had my sister and my brother in-law come with me, they helped lift me on and off of all the various beds. I even had my dear friend pop by (you know who you are - thanks) which was great, she lighten the mood. There was a bit of a wait for all the test results to make it back to my NS in time for my appointment.

The good news is they didn't find any fractures, pinched nerves or narrowing of the spinal canal, no kidney stones. There however was a small speck in my left kidney, nothing to really worry about. Also there has been no significant changes to the tumour and cyst since my last MRI scan back in 2007. Having said that, the radiology report says "atrophy with extensive Syrinx formation" meaning wasting away. So in short, there doesn't seam to be any major changes just wasting, wear and tear of the cord. Which my NS said was obvious and explains my loss in function over the last 5 years, toped off with the long term effects of radiation. Well that's the good know it doesn't sound like good news but it could of been much worse. It's good that the cyst hasn't grown, I suppose what bothers me somewhat, is even when and unfortunately the time will come that it will get worse, they can't do anything about it. I asked him if and when some time in the future would surgery ever be considered at least for the cyst, he pretty much said "NO"

He concluded that he was glad that we didn't go through with any surgery back 11 years ago in 2001 when we first found the cyst. He was adamant that if we had, I wouldn't be here today or worse I'd be a quadriplegic. Because of the location of the cyst it can cause heart, speech, and breathing problems. I asked how likely is it that one day I could wakeup having these problems. His answer was, "it's highly unlikely that it will happen that fast, it will be a very long and slow process as my past history has shown". Not too sure weather I liked that answer, long and slow. It sounds like a lot of pain and suffering to me. I think I'd rather quick and over with, since there isn't anything that can be done.

Anyway that's the tumour and cyst side of things, they did find a collapse of the lower lobe of my left lung and at least 3 liver lesions, 15, 9 and 6mm. Not sure if I should be concerned, my NS didn't seam concerned about it. Doctors are sometimes hard to read. The Liver and Lung isn't his area so I don't think he wanted to say anything, except to see my GP. 

I'm not too worried about the lung thing, probably not surprising with my spinal curvature but it's my left lung lower lobe that's not inflated. Strange because it's my right lung that has the less room and is more squashed in. I'm not having any breathing problems so I'll have to discuss it with my GP weather this is or will be an issue or not. 

On the other hand the liver lesions is another story, wasn't to concerned at first but after doing some research I found out that the liver is under the ribcage on the right side. It's pretty much where my pain is. I'm getting the felling that my ribs are rubbing up against my liver causing the lesions thus causing the pain. I always though it was my lung rubbing up against my rib. Well it's just theory, I'm not going to get ahead of myself, lets see what the GP and the report from my NS has to say. 

The bad news is we didn't find the cause of the pain, which was what NS said that we probably wouldn't, but at least we ruled out what it isn't. In hindsight I wish I would of asked some more questions about the location of the liver. Isn't it funny how you always have questions you wanted to ask and get side tracked then after you leave you remember. Dives me nut's!    

So in conclusion, no significant changes in the spinal cord, cyst and tumour apart from wear and tear. NS puts my pain down to my posture and recommend going to a pain clinic to help manage my pain. In leaving his office I asked if he wanted to see me again, he shook my hand and said "his always happy to see me". I got the feeling and reading in between lines, there's not much point, his a surgeon, he can't operate, he can't help me anyway!

So I'll leave it at that for now and will update once I speak to my GP........

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