Thyroidectomy at Royal Marsden, London following poss lymphoma
I have Hashis and been living with a large goitre for the last 15 years. I have had a right hemi (partial) thyroidectomy at the Royal Marsden, London, last Thursday under Mr Rhys-Evans, who is supposed to be the UK's leading Thyroid surgeon. I spent hours researching who was the best UK thyroid surgeon, and I managed to get myself referred on the NHS, so it was free. I know surgery, especially neck surgery is horrendous, but all in all I feel like I have been so well cared for. I feel so lucky.
I first saw him mid September when he ordered an ultrasound and a biopsy, and following an inconlusive biopsy result which showed a possible lymphoma, I saw one of his team on the 6 October who recommended I have half of the thyroid and the nodules removed. One of my nodules was 4cm, and though the ultrasound looked normal and the risk of cancer low, we both agreed better to be safe than sorry. I have seen many thyroid specialists over the years but this is the first time I have been told that Hashimotos pre-disposes people to lymphoma and I was horrified. I was always quite relaxed (well, as relaxed as you can be!!!) about the risk of my nodules turning cancerous because thyroid cancer is considered so treatable and the prognosis is so good, but lymphoma is a different story.
I was a mess. I couldn't stop crying and I was so terribly stressed. I was convinced I would either die in surgery or that they would open me up and find I was riddled with cancer. Every ache and pain made me panic and I was paralysed with fear at the thought of not being there for my 2 very young children. This could have been a long, drawn out and very dark period for me, dreading the op and not knowing the result, but my surgeon actually rang me an hour after me leaving her surgery and booked me in for th op the following Thursday,6 days later. She said there was no clinical urgency, but they could fit me in and it would be good for me to get it over with. A mixture of relief and dread washed over me. There was no going back!!!
They admitted me the day before, and the anaesthetist and surgeons came to see me to discuss the op. They took enormous care in choosing where the incision would go,so as to leave as unnoticeable scar as possible, and I saw them both again just before I was put to sleep. When I opened my eyes, a lovely female surgeon was there holding my hand and telling me everything had gone extremely well, and she visited me later that day to tell me that upon close examination of the nodule, it was almost certainly benign. What a relief!! I was alive AND I didn't have cancer!!!!!! She visited me again on Saturday morning (on her day off) to check me over before I went home. I am now 4 days post op and recovering slowly but surely.
It seems that after reading other peoples experiences, I have been so lucky in the care and treatment I have received. Just have to make sure I don't have MRSA now!!!!!