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'Suspected Hepatoma'


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#1 ceeshell

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:35 PM

Hello all,

DH (37, relatively healthy) was recently diagnosed with Fatty Liver Disease (the non alcoholic variety) after having scans etc to investigate quite terrible pain in his right abdomen/testicle. It was initially thought that the cyst he has on his epididymis was infected - but the pain has persisted.

After a scan showed fatty parts around his liver, he has cleaned up his lifestyle and lost 7 kilos (hasn't had a single drink or crumb of junk food since then).

He was sent for a follow up ultrasound to see how his liver was faring and his GP called him to tell him he needed to have a CT scan to check out a 'dark area' on his liver. The GP sounded quite relaxed and told him to just pick up the referral from the front desk and have the scan when he could.

When DH collected the referral he was shocked to see the words 'suspected hepatoma'. I was hoping he'd misread it and it said 'haematoma' but no such luck. This means they're looking for cancer, right?

Does anyone know if the way they phrase things mean anything? I would prefer it to say 'rule out' rather than 'suspected' but does it all basically mean the same thing?

(He had the scan this morning and is seeing his GP tomorrow morning. He is freeeaaaaking out. He has an intense fear of getting cancer and is very ... emotional about this sort of thing. I am pragmatic. I figure I will just get on with daily life until such time as something is confirmed. He thinks I'm being cold - I think I am being sensible.)

#2 Sweet.Pea

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:37 PM

The GP is probably just covering themselves. Rule out the serious stuff first and work backwards.

Last thing they need is to find out it's cancer when it's too late.

I know this is what my GP does.

#3 ceeshell

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:43 PM

 Sweet.Pea, on 20 February 2019 - 02:37 PM, said:

The GP is probably just covering themselves. Rule out the serious stuff first and work backwards.

Last thing they need is to find out it's cancer when it's too late.

I know this is what my GP does.

I think this, too. DH is just hung up on the word 'suspected'

It could scarring from a motorcycle accident he had a few years ago. I'm going with that.

#4 born.a.girl

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:53 PM

Sometimes it's easier to rule out the worst case scenario with an easy method, and sometimes it's the other way around.

I had an MRI of the lower spine just to rule out anything nasty in order to have a cortisone injection, and the envelope with the disc said 'suspected spinal tumour' so I'm damned glad the doctor explained it to me as ruling out the minuscule chance, rather than suspecting it.

I don't know about the language, I hope for your sake it means 'ruling out'.

#5 Sweet.Pea

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:56 PM

 ceeshell, on 20 February 2019 - 02:43 PM, said:



I think this, too. DH is just hung up on the word 'suspected'

It could scarring from a motorcycle accident he had a few years ago. I'm going with that.

The reason why I think they use the word 'suspected' is for the sonographer. If they think it could be found, they will try harder to look for it.

#6 ceeshell

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:57 PM

 born.a.girl, on 20 February 2019 - 02:53 PM, said:

Sometimes it's easier to rule out the worst case scenario with an easy method, and sometimes it's the other way around.

I had an MRI of the lower spine just to rule out anything nasty in order to have a cortisone injection, and the envelope with the disc said 'suspected spinal tumour' so I'm damned glad the doctor explained it to me as ruling out the minuscule chance, rather than suspecting it.

I don't know about the language, I hope for your sake it means 'ruling out'.

Thank you. That's exactly the kind of story I wanted to hear.

#7 cabbage88

Posted 20 February 2019 - 03:10 PM

I refer for imaging in my industry, and this is exactly the language I use. There's no diplomacy in imaging request- what the GP is saying is "Can you make sure this isn't cancer, thankyou". That doesn't mean he thinks cancer is likely- it means cancer is a serious pathology you must rule out if there's a doubt about it.

#8 born.a.girl

Posted 20 February 2019 - 03:14 PM

 ceeshell, on 20 February 2019 - 02:57 PM, said:

Thank you. That's exactly the kind of story I wanted to hear.


I hope you have good news for us tomorrow.  Much as we all like answers, we like them to be the least concerning.

#9 ceeshell

Posted 20 February 2019 - 03:43 PM

 cabbage88, on 20 February 2019 - 03:10 PM, said:

I refer for imaging in my industry, and this is exactly the language I use. There's no diplomacy in imaging request- what the GP is saying is "Can you make sure this isn't cancer, thankyou". That doesn't mean he thinks cancer is likely- it means cancer is a serious pathology you must rule out if there's a doubt about it.

Thank you!! I figured this was the case, but it is comforting to read your post.

#10 Chicken Pie

Posted 22 February 2019 - 02:27 PM

How’d the update go OP?

#11 ceeshell

Posted 13 March 2019 - 06:36 PM

Hi!

Sorry, I forgot to update.

The report from the CT said the worst. Hepatocellular Carcinoma. The GP was devastated with us. He gave DH Valium and was on the phone to patient navigators at the Chris O’Brien lifehouse while waited. It was the worst day of our lives.

The GP was incredible. He got us into see the specialist that afternoon.

After seeing the nurse first (who prepped us for the possibility of surgery within a few days), the specialist looked at the scans and basically said ‘I don’t reckon!’

Faaaark. Rollercoaster.

So DH was sent for bloods and an MRI. Results show that it is vascular and probably there from birth.

Specialist as opinions about the doctor who wrote the CT report.

So, it was hell but has a good out one in the end.

#12 turbulent

Posted 13 March 2019 - 06:49 PM

Oh u poor loves! My heart was in my mouth reading that!
So glad it at least turned out in the best way.

#13 Mollyksy

Posted 13 March 2019 - 07:59 PM

Oh gosh what a rollercoaster. Do glad it's ok in the end. But if you were a cat, you'd both have used up one of your lives!

Mum had the opposite at one point during her cancer journey. The scan and lung biopsy initially said not cancer. Her GP rang immediately to give her the good news, her cancer hadn't spread. He then had to call back the next morning and tell her it was an error, it was cancer, and it was terminal.

On a lighter note, one funny scan stands out. Her gallbladder looks normal the report said (good party trick, it was removed!). They could see one breast implant. Perfect, and what about the one on the other side?! And no cancer anymore in her bones or lungs. Um, are you blind? Even I could see the spots on the scan. The oncologist refused to look at the reports and read the scans himself. I learnt on the job! RIP mum, she had a sense of humor which kept her sane.

#14 IShallWearMidnight

Posted 13 March 2019 - 08:33 PM

I'm sorry glad it turned out fine!

I'm a bit like your DH and panic about cancer.


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