Saturday, May 5, 2012

Catching Up!

I am updating this May 5 blog to provide more info on Shari's surgery and events surrounding it.

 Shari had a CAT scan on her spine to update the doctor on the pain in her lower back. She injured it 16 years ago and the pain was getting worse by the week.  Well, the Radiologist, reporting on the images noticed a small tumor on her adrenal gland (left) which has overshadowed the back problem.  We were sent to a specialist who ran numerous blood and urine tests to find that the tumor is causing two major glitches in her hormone levels.  One is symptomatic and one can kill a person.  The latter is the one they are focusing on.  So, the surgeon has scheduled her to have the left adrenal gland removed (including the tumor) which normally are not cancerous.  The pre-treatment is to have her on a medication for four weeks to normalize the effects of the gland bringing us to May 14 for the surgery.  It should be an easy operation but the following 24-72 hours will require ICU to keep control of her blood pressure as it will drop to deadly levels after the removal of the gland/tumor.  Within that time the untouched right gland (which has been at rest, basking in the knowledge that the left one has been working overtime making 2 or 3 times the hormones a body requires.  Once it "wakes up" things should return to normal...whatever that was.

Shari has suffered symptoms for months or years, it is hard to say.

The evening after surgery Shari sat up in bed and said to me, " this is different, my back pain is nearly gone". I contributed it to the anesthesia.  It has not returned and is about 80% better two weeks post surgery.  But that is only part of the story.  Her symptoms have been varied and crossing several lines.  The surgeon noted in her followup visit that the back could have worsened due to the tumor (larger than they thought) pressing on a nerve to or from her back causing pain.  Also, her skin is changing from rough to smooth again, her anxiety is gone, blood pressure which was almost uncontrollable is below normal now as it was 16 years ago, the medicine for her diabetes, she takes 3, and blood sugar and A1C has been high for years, is well into the normal range with reduction in medication.  Even her voice is changing.  Those of you who are aware know that she used to sing and her voice is returning to the soft voice she once had.  All of this 2 weeks after surgery.  Her hormone levels are showing lower on the follow up tests. She is sleeping better, doing more and her vigor is returning also.  It is amazing.  The surgeon said that the changes could take up to  6 months to get fully back to normal.

Thanks for your prayers and we are happy as we can be with the results already.  Odd thing is that they told us that they find "adrenal adenoma" during autopsy or "incidental CT Scans looking for something else.  Hers was overlooked for years.

For more reading about this condition please visit:

Before surgery we had decided to sell the motor home but since have postponed that idea since things are really looking better for to want to travel a bit now.

Otherwise, all is well and we are enjoying life as usual. I will post an image or two of our plants in bloom if I can remember how to do that.

Yellow Hibiscus

Lavender "Rose of Sharon" Hibiscus

Lantana "Butterfly Bush"


Sandra said...

Prayers for Shari, sorry to hear about her medical problems. Also sorry to hear that you're giving up RVing but you have a nice spot where you live. Take care.

KarenInTheWoods and Steveio said...

Best wishes for the very best outcome to her surgery! Things may look brighter afterwards and you may find something else to do together that you can both enjoy.

Karen and Steve
(Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard

LakeConroePenny,TX said...

Oh Jake, please give Shari my very best wishes for the surgery.
I am sure she will feel a lot better afterwards, and might even enjoy going on some trips in the MH.
You have a lovely place there on High Island, but sometimes it is great to go on a little trip.
Happy Trails, Penny, TX

Leno said...

I will certainly keep Shari in my prayers. I am hoping I can get to meet the two of you when Dee comes to town in August..

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