Not sure if I should be here..

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I'm a 30 year old male. My situation started about 3 weeks ago, and in that time a lot has happened. I have since been referred for an urgent CT scan.

Here is my story:

3 weeks ago I started experiencing some urinary tract issues, which was initially thought to be a UTI or inflammation. But neither antibiotics nor anti-inflammatory's got rid of it. It did eventually go away on it's own, but its the other symptoms that progressed soon after that have caused concerns.

I'd started getting some very bad, right sided back pain, not quite very lower back, but in the rib/flank area. It also radiated to the right abdomen. This has not gone away, but on it's own wasn't worrying to my GP, so they booked an Ultrasound of my abdomen.

However, one night, I had this sudden intense pain in my right testicle, which prompted a visit to A&E, which then faded into a constant dull ache. I went to A&E and they suspected the testicle had twisted itself (torsion), which can be very serious. The on-call consultant urologist came in and saw me and upon physical exam assured me it was likely not torsion, but he booked a Same day emergency care ultrasound with doppler imaging of my testicular region.

This ultrasound ended up showing a varicocele on the right testicle (basically swelling of the right testicular vein). The urologist saw me again almost immediately after having the Ultrasound, and wanted to book an urgent CT scan and said he would see me in 3 weeks. The concern is that something "upstream" from this swollen testicular vein, in my Kidneys, could be causing pressure on an artery, such as a mass, causing the vein swelling issues downstream.

So this is where I am now, I am awaiting the urgent CT scan appointment, which I am finding really hard. 

Given all of my symptoms I am experiencing, particularly the night sweats, and little appetite, feeling unwell - I am very concerned. I think my chances of having Kidney Cancer were rare, due to my age, but when taking into consideration all of these symptoms, I think it is looking quite likely, and I want to prepare myself.

Also, because of the nature of this cancer, I'm worried that with such a lot of various symptoms, that it may be a late stage.  

I know I'm getting ahead of myself, and I guess I came here to seek some reassurance, as I'm just extremely nervous. I'm basically already signing my own death sentence, thinking about never growing old with partner, etc. It's overwhelming. 

  • Hello Chrisdav

    Welcome to the Online Community. You are very welcome to post on here about anything that is worrying you and also to ask any questions.

    You have had a lot of different symptoms, which raise concern and warrant the investigations. However there are lots of possible reasons so please do not fear the worst straight away. Being referred for an urgent CT scan is normal in these circumstances and it is likely they are looking to find out what is causing your symptoms and to hopefully rule out serious causes. 

    I do understand how scary it is to get these symptoms and to go through the testing. Having tests and waiting for results, while you desperately want to know what is going on is really hard. But without all of this, they can not be sure. 

    My advice would be to try and break it down into more manageable steps to try and stop the panicky feeling becoming overwhelming. Also talk to people, express your worries. Have you people around that you can talk to about this? If not then please consider giving the Support Line a call. They are very used to people in a similar position to you who are having tests and are worrying about cancer. The Number is below. Alternatively there is an Online chat feature if you prefer.

    Breaking it down to look at it step by step.

    -You have had symptoms for only 3 weeks, but you have sort advice straight away. They are taking it seriously and sending you for tests to find out what is going on. This is positive. You haven't ignored symptoms or been too afraid to ask about them. You have potentially acted before anything progressed. Whatever is causing your symptoms getting diagnosed and treated early is the best idea.

    - You have had UTI symptoms and kidney infection type symptoms. Again these have been checked by a urologist. Although you have had a torsion with your testicle, that may mean something is causing pressure further up- there may well be benign reasons for this such as kidney stones etc. I, myself had a bad kidney infection previously and felt generally unwell, had pain in my flank, sweats, not wanting to eat etc. Actually felt unwell enough to go to hospital. It could be something completely different but all I am trying to get across is that there are potentially other explanations but they do always try to rule out anything more serious.

    - You have had a look and say that your risk is quite low due to your age. I do not know much about kidney cancer but I do know that on Google there is a lot of information that is not particularly accurate. I have had a look on Macmillan and it says that although kidney cancers do not always cause symptoms, blood in the urine is the most common symptom- and that is something that you have not mentioned. 

    It is very easy when being faced with symptoms and tests to start to panic and think the worst but please try not to. Wait for the results and hopefully they will be reassuring. And if it does turn out to be cancer, then we will be here to offer support.

    And do consider giving the Support Line a call, you would be able to speak with one of the nurses and talk through the symptoms that are concerning you. 



    Macmillan Support Line - 0808 808 00 00, 7 days a week between 8am-8pm

  • Hello Chrisdav,

    I echo what Jane has said.

    You are in the scariest of positions at the moment, which is the unknown. The best advice that I was given was ‘don’t go down the rabbit holes of what ifs.’ Just wait for some concrete information.

    You have  sought help early which is the best thing you could have done.

    Take care and do let us know how you are doing. We have all at some point been in the position of uncertainty and it’s not a nice place to be.We are a caring group, happy to share our experiences and listen to what is bothering our in line friends in order to support them.

    Sending you a big hug. 
    Jules x

  • When I found out I had kidney cancer my immediate concern was to get treatment quickly but from what I understand generally it is very slow to spread. The consultant reckoned mine had been developing for at least five years and thankfully it hadn’t spread into surrounding tissue. Try not to worry and be patient waiting for your scan results. It’s very frustrating but you’re getting the tests that need to be done and once they’ve got all the information they’ll be able to decide what is needed. If, like me, you needed a kidney removed, it slows you down temporarily but five months on I’m feeling reasonably fit again. Hopefully it won’t come to that and you’ll get some good news after the scans. Fingers crossed and good luck. 

  • How are you doing mate? Any update ?