Surgery: As Expected and Then Some
The surgery went as expected. They removed the tumor which was approximately 1cm in size and it tested positive for papillary thyroid cancer, as expected. I was pretty much back to normal by the following day, with the help of some Tylenol.
The twist: the pathologist also noticed that there were microscopic foci of the same cancer in soft tissue surrounding the tumor. The surgeon took more distant samples from surrounding soft tissue and saw more of the same, in every sample he took before he stopped taking samples. I don't know what this means yet, and will be following up with my endocrinologist this week to discuss options. The surgeon said it is unusual to see spread of this type of cancer beyond the thyroid bed.
Also, this surgery cost me $1,000 on top of the nearly $10,000 in premiums and copays I pay in a year. I'm fortunate that I can cover that kind of unexpected expense with cash reserves at this point in my life, but there was a time when that wasn't the case and I may have had the hard decision of digging the debt hole deeper or just not proceeding. And that sucks.