This week, I had my first surgical consultation with the team of doctors at Royal North Shore Hospital who will be removing my thyroid, the 8cm tumour attached to it, and the lymph nodes nearby.
The head surgeon, a Professor of Surgery at a Sydney university who has reputedly done 14,000 thyroid removals, was first there. He asked if I had seen “a female doctor” yet that day. I hadn’t, so he went looking for her. On their return, the Prof and the other doctor took turns feeling my neck and asking about my clinical history. Then came a knock at the door, and another young female doctor entered the room, and shortly started poking about at the tumour too. A few minutes later, this process was repeated by another doctor – four in all. Lucky there weren’t any more because the room wouldn’t have fit us all.
Then they explained the surgery to me and said they wanted me in there as soon as possible. The incision will be about 5-8cm across the front of my neck and then up to the left hand side toward my ear. The thyroid and all the lymph nodes on the left will come out – a thyroidectomy and a lateral lymphadenectomy. Apparently they try to do it so it fits neatly into the neck folds, but I don’t have very obvious neck folds so I don’t know how well that will work out.
Afterwards, I completed some paperwork and headed off. Then we took advantage of being in Sydney for the day and went to Margaritaville in Darling Harbour for lunch. Here are our drinks:
Today, I got a phone call from the hospital to arrange admission for my surgery on May 1st. It’s a strange thing to be happy about, but I feel like that was the best phone call I have ever received. If only I could follow up that visit to Sydney with some margaritas.