Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Surgery

I learned a new term yesterday: Vomit.

Victim Of Medical Imaging Technology.

I got sick a few weeks ago. I'll spare you the details, sufficing to say that I thought I had a kidney stone. I ended up at the hospital for a CT scan, after which I was told that they, "...found something on [my] liver."

"What is it?" I asked.

"A cavernous hemangioma."

"What's that?"

"It's a cluster of blood vessels. The problem is not that you've got it; the problem is that we compared it to a previous scan, and it has grown, and now is at risk for hemorrhaging. You'll need an MRI."

Yadda yadda yadda, I had an MRI a few days later. A few days after that, my doctor's office reported that the MRI confirmed several lesions on my liver, the largest of which is at risk for (get this) spontaneous rupture.

Awesome.

I was also told that I would need surgery, and that my consultation with a surgeon would be scheduled for the end of April.

I had to quit exercising. (SIDE NOTE: I may not have mentioned this, but I've been an exercising FOOL this year. Since last November, with exercise and diet, I've lost 25 lbs. You heard me. And this might sound trite, but I had a really difficult time with having to stop exercising. I was grieving. I'm serious. I was devastated.) I was told to 'take it easy' and that even raising my heart rate was risky because this is a vascular issue. I prepared for a summer of recovery from an intense and invasive surgery. No camping. No dancing. No swimming. No racing.

My preparation included mentally lining up what could be done ahead of time to minimize the effect on my family, as well as assuring myself that things would be okay, and reminding myself that even my youngest child, at four years old, can get her own cereal.

I leaned a lot on Darin. I cried a lot. I mourned the loss of a summer of fulfilled goals.

And then yesterday, my surgeon (same who removed my gall bladder, by the way) (good kid, good kid) answered my many, many questions - a good 15-minutes' worth of valuable discussion. When I began the questions about the surgery, he said, essentially, "I don't know who told you that you'll be needing surgery, but you don't need it."

Ahem.

No surgery.

No two-month long recovery. No retirement of goggles, bike, running shoes. No having to relearn how to raise my arms.

"This seems like a case of VOMIT," continued my surgeon. "Victim Of Medical Imaging Technology. You've probably been walking around with this thing for a very long time, you just didn't know it. And now that you know about it, you're worried. Come back in a year for another scan, we'll check the growth again."

I asked if I could continue to exercise, and he said, "Absolutely. Just try to not fall off your bike."

See you at Zumba?

12 comments:

Gerb said...

Such FANTASTIC news! I heard a tiny bit of what was going on from Allen but didn't know anything except surgery, lesions, liver. And I have been worried and praying for you - and this post just totally made my day. Or year, even. I am so stoked for you! I love good news.

Keira said...

I'm glad you don't need surgery :) I'm supposed to scheduled for surgery at the end of June (haven't actually scheduled it yet) and I won't be able to do any vigorous activity for three months afterward, so I'm trying to get in as much exercise as I can before I can't. I hope your liver stays okay!

dalene said...

Yay for ~j!

Naomi said...

It's never good to be at the wrong end of VOMIT! So glad you get to carry on as normal and avoid surgery.

Treble Clef ♪ said...

Well, that's no fun..all that extra worry. So glad you don't need surgery. Prayers do help:) And, may I say how impressed I am with your commitment to exercise? Awesome.

AzĂșcar said...

BOOM!

Carrot Jello said...

Shew!

Stepper the Mighty said...

wait...but...WHAT?!

So you still have the lesions - they're just not scary?

I guess I'll have to ask you about it at Zumba (25 lbs! You go, girl!).

(I'm not going to Zumba stalk you.)

(But if I see you there, I'll totally say hey.)

CKW said...

DO you sometimes fall off your bike? Because I might come along next time to observe (and to help you up after I finish laughing.):-P

Kazzy said...

Woot! Yeah, I have been a victim of VOMIT before too, and the ups and downs are enought to drive you insane,

Glad for the good news. Now get back to sweating!

Lyle said...

That's gotta be a relief for the entire family.

Melissa LeVesque said...

I am very happy that you're going to be okay, but even more proud of you for those 25 pounds! That's awesome!!! My goal this year is to lose 35 pounds to celebrate turning 35...I'm down about 10, which isn't great, but it's better than nothing. You go girl!!!