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EndocrineWeb Community Advice

thyroidectomy due to cancer goes seriously wrong....

From: ithurtbad_isurvived - 4 years 41 weeks ago

In late 2005 I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, surgery scheduled for Nov. 14. Knowing it would more likely than not be a total thyroidectomy, I was still sure I would be fine for the coming holidays ~ even Thanksgiving with my family 3.5 hours away seemed with it would happen. Until the middle of the surgery or so. The doctor who did mine had reassured me that he had done "this surgery many times" and not to worry. I totally trusted my doctor, no reason not to really. But somehow during the extremely long ordeal ~ my PHRENIC nerve was damaged and my juglar vein was tied and cut to be kept out of the way. The results being that the scar tissue around my juglar vein has made it so the vein did not "heal" right; helping to cause pressure behind my eye and to my brain. Three emergency spinal taps later, some horrible medicine and very scary tests it actually went away for awhile only to return with a vengence. And that was the easy part. Your phrenic nerve is what tells your lungs what to do ~ such as move up and down and breathe. To put it in another term, my right lung is how severely hard of hearing. I cannot breathe right. As soon as I awoke from surgery I knew something was wrong. Several weeks later another doctor figured out what had happened (the surgeon ditched me big time) and got the surgeon to order oxygen therapy for me at home. When I lie down flat is when it most effects me, or if I get overly excited... my heart will now always work overtime. I am 46 now, a window, a mother of a teen daughter and scared out of my wits. In October of this year, after years of lawyers and such, he refused to settle out of court and we were forced to quit the suit. After all, he only damaged the PHRENIC nerve and cutting of the juglar vein is routine in this kind of surgery (that he only performed a handful of times - and never as serious or complicated as mine.
To all the medical people reading this.... the suit is over... you can be honest now.... how often does things like happen ??????? Is it routine to cut the juglar? You will not be contacted! Thank you for your concern, your time and your experience.
To my fellow cancer patients. Get all the information about complications from your surgeons. Ask about what happened to me...

Thank you all. Merry Christmas to you all. Sure beats spending the first Christmas eve in the hospital like I did that first year.

Lani

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