CIS Superfical Stage 2
Today I have joined the List of Bladder Cancer Cafe Members , after having e-mailed for advice from Wendy Sheridan and was greatly enlightened by her as she answered my questions graciously and profoundly !
Wendy suggested that I join this forum to learn and share information about the Cancer battles that are being fought and to share a little info about myself !
My name is Cliff , 54 years of age,. married , I have 3 children ( 2 girls and a boy ) all grown up and married ! My youngest daughter was just married on May the 15th this year !
My wife and I live in Winnipeg , Manitoba Canada
My battle with cancer began on March 24 , 2004 . My wife and I had just returned from a winter visit to Brownsville ,Texas having returned to Winnipeg and while visiting our oldest daughter and son- in -law when I noticed blood in my urine after having went to the washroom to urinate .
I thought at the time it may have been caused from two uncoated Aspirin I had taken earlier that morning for a headache , as I knew Aspirin sometimes causes the stomach to bleed and thins the blood and I thought this may be a new outcome as well !
Then approximately a week or week and a – half later this symptom showed up again , the next morning my wife phoned our GP to make an appointment but he was totally booked and his receptionist told my wife to get me to go to Emergency in one of the hospitals in Winnipeg !
As we live close to Victoria Hospital we went there waited 10 hours to see a doctor . Upon getting an examination, I told the young Intern Doctor my symptoms , he took a urine and blood samples had the lab test it right away , then we waited about 2 hrs. for Lab results ! The blood tests were fine however there was blood in the urine !
The young Doctor had a reference note made out with a recommendation and an appointment for me to see a Urologist by the name of Dr. John Krevalis stating that I needed to have a cystoscopy and that he thought he was a good urologist who could make sure that I was healthy !
We followed up with a visit to Dr. Karvelas the Urologist , he explained what he would be looking for in my bladder , kidneys and urethral tract and set up some blood and urine tests at the Lab right away as well as booked an ultra -sound and biopsy via cystoscopy stating he would take samples and burn and shave any thing that looked like a tumour !
After having had the ultrasound , Dr krevalis phoned me one evening and said that in looking at the ultrasound results he thought they had located two spots that looked to be no larger than 2 centimetres in size and said that he would remove them in the upcoming biopsy on April 8/04 and that I should come into his office next morning to sign the forms ! I asked him if he thought they(tumours) would be malignant ? He said that he’d certainly be surprised if they weren’t !
I went in next day to sign the forms and the Doctor warned me if it should turn out that the tumours looked bad they may have to at some point do radical surgery and take out the bladder and replace it with intestinal skin or perhaps create a rubber bladder and set me up with a stoma ! At that point my heart slid to my butt and I only hoped in all sincerity that I did not have Cancer or atleast not a serious tumour !
The morning of April the 8th my wife and I drove down to Victoria Hospitals for my first cystoscopy .
They got me ready in ample time and I walked into the operating room was helped up on the table and they proceeded to give me a spinal by having me bend over so that they could insert a needle into my spine which was supposed to numb me from the waist down , I am a little overweight but not extensively so and they gave me one needle, did not find the right place , they gave a second – did not find the right place for it to take hold , they tried a third place to try but it also did not numb me from the waist down ! Then they finally decided to give me a general which I requested in the first place !
As soon as I laid down they started strapping me in and inserting an IV into my left hand vein and wrapped a blood pressure belt around my right forearm which would not stay on and they finally had to get a larger one which stayed on, this being done they gave me oxygen with a clear plastic mask and we’re talking to me and the next thing I knew I was waking up in the recovery room !
Had no side effects from the General and felt Ok except for having a strong urge to pee and upon seeing a nurse coming up to me asking if I was alright and needed anything , I told her I really needed to go to the washroom and pee ! She told me to go ahead right where I was as I had a catheter on !
In about 15 min. Dr. Karvelas came in and stated that he had shaved and burnt all that he could see and that he thought that he had gotten all of it . He also said that he was surprised to see that it had covered about 40% of my bladder and looked like a shag rug with swishy like tumours stating that it being so close to the wall was why the ultrasound didn’t pick it up !
I thought to myself I’m in trouble now and said are they malignant ? Doctor said he was 99% sure they were !
I spent two hours in the hospital in recovery and being an out patient was given two catheters( Leg Strap style and a Large one for night use ) a prescription for a very strong anti-biotic and some blue pills to relieve those urgency cramps one feels when you wear a catheter which I was supposed to leave on for two days and sent home. The first time you take off a catheter is also quite a procedure . Actually the whole catheter scene is quite uncomfortable I find , it tugs and pulls and gets in the way of everything , if anyone has found a way to make it comfortable let me know ! The Urologist advised us to call back for an appointment in 10 days .
I went back for my appointment approx. 10 days later and I was interested and anxious to know what the pathologist report would show , however we we’re told there was not enough sample tissue with the cuttings and burnt cells for the pathologist to do a proper Grading and Staging , but at this point until they found out more they we’re going to give it a stage 1 or 2 grading and treat it accordingly . Dr. Krevalis stated it is some times hard to get enough sample under these conditions as one wants to make sure they burn and shave it all and this type of swishy matter just about disintegrates as soon as it hits air !
Doctor then explained they needed to know how far into the lining the tumour had spread , whether it was just inside the lining or the Propea or if it had got into the muscle ? He explained that it is like a carpet and you spill something on it ! You don’t know if the stain is just on the surface, deeper into the carpet ? or in the surface or lining of the underlay ? or right to the floor boards ? !
At any rate he took another blood and urine sample at the Lab and booked a Catscan which was supposed to be about a month later but ended up being about 2!/2 weeks after the operation . Doctor also stated that people who have their bladders out under this condition do not have to worry about cancer ! No bladder , No cancer he said ! I didn’t say anything but it sure made me uncomfortable !
I had the CT and while they could not see any problems in the Bladder it looked pretty clear , my urologist and a urologist from The Health Sciences Center in Winnipeg here became concerned at what looked like a thickening of the walls of the bladder , however they also reasoned it could be due to the early CT Scan so early after the operation .
Dr. Kaevelas then booked me for an IVP to take a look at my kidneys and the rest of my Urethral system with dye , he was going to do this on the first operation but did not want to risk washing b