When life throws you the curve ball

You know how sometimes in life when things are ticking along nicely and all is well, all of a sudden you get thrown the curve ball? Well, this happened with us over the past few weeks. In the last post we alluded to the fact that we had been on a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. The highs have been with Alex back in NZ and staying with us, and catching up with her friends and just generally doing lots together and having family time. The lows have come in the same days over the past few weeks as Roy has had a medical hiccup.

It started a couple of weeks ago with a visit to the Dr (back to our GP we had when we lived in Auckland) as Roy had had an episode of blood in his urine, Linda (Dr) organised an ultrasound scan for Monday 11th February, which he duly went off and had done. That evening Linda rang to say she had had the results and could we both come in tomorrow to discuss them! Well, you can imagine our thoughts….so Tuesday off to see her, with her giving us the devastating news that they had found some cysts on both kidneys but they had also found an anomalous growth in the left kidney. When questioned, yes, it was likely to be a cancerous growth.

(Oh and this was the evening of our dinner at the French Cafe!)

She had already tentatively booked Roy in for a CT scan for the following morning to get a better view and idea of exactly what it was we were dealing with. As we had made other plans for the week, we also agreed that she would let us know the next steps over the telephone. We had organised to go down to Whakatane to John’s to do some fishing, as Alex was really keen. We headed off around midday Wednesday after the CT scan and it ended up a great couple of days away particularly as Antony came down with us.

Thursday and Bernice, Antony and Alex headed out with John for a days fishing, Roy stayed behind and it was not long before Linda rang with the much better news that the CT scan showed that the growth was likely to be benign. Phew! HOWEVER, a specialist urologist/oncologist appointment was made for the following Tuesday 19th February.

Meanwhile, we collectively sighed a measured sigh of relief, particularly as Alex was flying back to London on Saturday night but at least this was better news and we all felt a lot better.

Tuesday 20th February we had the Specialist appointment, he concurred that it was small, likely to be benign, and best left alone and monitored at this stage, with another CT scan scheduled for 6 months time. We asked about biopsying the growth but as he explained, the likelihood of them actually hitting the right spot within the growth to find any cancerous cells was very small, and as initially it is very slow growing, sometimes not disturbing things is the best practise.

However, we were not quite off the hook as yet as this did not explain the blood in the urine, as he said it could well be bladder cancer…..so Roy had a few more tests done, including a scope down the urethra to look inside the bladder (I call this women’s revenge!!!), and a prostate check. It turns out that his prostate has started to grow again, he had surgery on it 8 years ago, and the new growth including tiny new blood vessels, rub against the bladder and sometimes the tiny blood vessels burst, hence the blood in the urine. The prostate is not a problem at this stage, it is just the expected regrowth after the last surgery. So, the next step is to carry on life as usual, and in 6 months time he will have another CT scan to check any progress.

We came away really happy (we have briefly summarized what was said and what has happened), as we asked all the hard questions and had them fully answered. Including things such as “is this likely to be a secondary for something else?” The answer is highly unlikely. Now that Roy has had a full check over, we are happy with all the answers and results.

All we can say is, thank goodness our Dr is really onto things and that we are back around Auckland where we can get ready access to Specialists and seen fairly quickly……………….oh and thank goodness for medical insurance!

As our Dr and Specialists have said to us, we are living the dream…..we have to keep reminding ourselves that we are DOING what others aspire to do!

6 Responses to “When life throws you the curve ball”

  1. Stuartinnz Says:

    Great to hear that things checked out OK

  2. Hossein Soltan Says:

    Oh poor Roy…… that was scary……I was scared read about it. Glad the outcome was OK, and you are right we all aspire to do what you are doing …ENJOY .
    Take care.

  3. Ian barbour Says:

    Hi Roy, really glad you have come through your health problems with a good outcome. I had a not too dissimilar experience four years ago so Alison and I know a bit what you two went through.
    Be happy and you are in our prayers.
    God bless,


    Ian B

  4. Mark Paton Says:

    Hello Roy & Bernice,
    Just read about Roy’s health concerns and so pleased that you are onto it! We are on board the boat in Havelock for most of this month. Will be doing some boat maintenance and of course enjoying the Sounds.

    Take care & keep smiling.
    All the best, Mark & Glynnis

  5. Wrap up and catch up | The Vannini's Manoeuvres Says:

    […] get it fitted, adjusted and made.  As well, today he has had an MRI scan for his kidney (see When life throws you the curve ball ) and next week we will head to the specialist for the results.  Fingers […]

  6. A glitch or two… | The Vanninis' Manoeuvres Says:

    […] specialist.  Previously he had a hiccup with his kidneys, which you can recap that story here.  As part of the checkup the specialist does the usual blood tests, flow tests etc, and he […]

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