I Have a Tumor

A couple of months ago, I went to see a doctor about a lump on my lower left thigh, just above the knee. An MRI indicated that the lump was likely a rhabdomyosarcoma – a cancerous tumor – although I would need a biopsy to be sure.

Based on the age and size of my tumor, and the fact that the MRI hinted at additional sarcomas on the bones of both legs, my prognosis looked fairly grim. In the worst case, I might have had less than two years left even with aggressive treatment.

It took me several weeks and referrals to three different doctors before I found one who was willing to do the biopsy. Three weeks ago, I had an open biopsy on my thigh that left me with a two-inch incision and nine surgical staples. Last week, we finally got the results from the biopsy: the mass in my thigh is a myxoid liposarcoma. A bone scan done just before the biopsy showed no bone involvement.

Now a liposarcoma is still a malignant tumor – cancer – but my prognosis is much better than it would be with a rhabdomyosarcoma. Liposarcoma is a less aggressive cancer that tends to spread locally rather than metastasize globally. On the other hand, it has a strong genetic component and tends to recur in other locations, and if it does spread to the lungs, etc. it can get nasty fast. For the moment, however, I am (probably) not dying – at least not any faster than expected.

At this point, it doesn’t look like I am going to need chemotherapy. I may even be able to skip radiation therapy if surgery successfully removes all traces of the cancer. The surgery itself – scheduled for late next month – may be a little tricky, however. The surgeon will be removing most of the sartorius muscle from my thigh. Depending on how much of the inner structure of the leg is exposed, they may have to move a muscle from my calf up into my thigh. With luck, I will retain most or all of my leg function.

Obviously, a malignant tumor is bad news. I’m  pretty annoyed about the entire thing, especially since it’s happening during the Mists of Pandaria beta. But hey … at least I am (probably) not dying in the next two years.

I hope.

See also:
Surgery Followup
Followup to the Followup

150 thoughts on “I Have a Tumor

  1. Spleet

    I left a post on the WHU also about this as well once I saw Frost’s post about your unfortunate situation. Like I said (over on the WHU) I’ve got no relationship to this product other than I strongly believe it’s helped my father in law A LOT (Stage III lung cancer). The research professor explains it in a nine part YouTube clip. Check it out and decide for yourself.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d8CKs5S74v8

    Best of luck to you!

  2. Lotusblack

    Best wishes for a quick recovery. Hang in there and fight this bastard of a disease every step of the way to recovery.

  3. Anj

    All the best Mania. WoW and pets have always been synonymous for me thanks to you and the Petopians.

    Anj
    Screaming Bees
    Moon Guard

  4. Hulder

    All the best, and have a speedy recovery! I firmly believe that cancer stands no chance in the face of so much hunter-y awesomeness!!

  5. Rymoe

    I heard of the news over at WHU and am really sad for what you will have to go through. In the last couple of weeks I too have been seeing doctors and having scans for throat cancer (results tomorrow) so I can at least understand a little of what you’re going through. Stay strong, keep the optimism and know this, you have a whole community of people feeding you positive wishes, here’s to us both pulling through and continuing to help hunters through future expansions /tar Mania /bow /salute

  6. IronThumbs

    Kick it’s ass mania! Show this horrible (un-tamable) beast that we are better, stronger and smarter than it is!
    X

  7. open sights

    Pulling for a speedy recovery, you do so much for the hunter community as a whole, I truly hope you have a speedy recovery.

  8. Haganne

    Thoughts and prayers go out to you. If you are at MD Anderson send an email, I will make sure you get GREAT food while you are there.

  9. Adrian

    Oh Mania – good news and bad all at once. What a mix of emotions you must be going through. My thoughts are with you and your family. Remember to be gentle on yourself and your body. And also that now is the best time ever to have the big C as the survivability rates just keep getting better. It would be great to be able to skip chemo. Get well soon.

  10. Quay

    I have been a avid follower of your sites for a while now, even when I left the game, yet I think I only posted a handful of times. Because of you, you have created a great atmosphere for probably thousands of hunters. We all appreciate you even if the majority doesn’t say it. Thank you for every thing and hurry up and get well soon so you can pour much love into MOP as you have in the past x-pacs. :)

  11. MacBurnie

    Always remember that even after all the science the modern age can muster there’s still a little bit of magic in every treatment, and every cure, and that’s why you’ve got to keep positive!

  12. Mugician13

    I have been playing WoW since just before Burning Crusade launched. My second character ever was a troll hunter, and it remains my favorite class to this day. Some time later, I was directed to your site [might have been from BRK's site, I'm not sure], and found it an invaluable tool for finding where to go and what to tame next for the pet abilities.

    Now that those are no longer necessary, I don’t get by here nearly as often, but I still enjoy looking for pets that I might want to tame someday. You have put an enormous amount of work and effort into this site, and it is truly an amazing resource. You are an invaluable part of the hunter community, and we’re all pulling for you, and wishing you all the best.

    Jajiko & Kali
    Sentinels server

  13. Klq

    I just want to say this, I have been in my own “trench” this year. I understand intimately the darkness that can arise when faced with something like this. I admire your strength of heart by keeping a lightness to your sentiments. and I would like to share a quote that has been close to my heart through my troubles:

    Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. ~Winston Churchill

  14. Gimrat

    All the best to you and thanks for the mania site as all hunters know is second to none . stay strong fight well .and again thanks

  15. Nicola

    I wish you all the best , i wish that a miracle will happen and you’ll get better and better and you’ll pass thorugh this and get stronger . Fuck cancer .

  16. Jyraia

    May all the Spirit Beats in this Universe cast their Spirit Mend on you. I am sincerely praying for you to overcome this.

  17. Omogon

    keep your chin up and never lose hope. Miracles happen every day. I have lost count of how many new hunters that I have pointed towards your work. Hunters everywhere are in your debt.

  18. Ravenhorn

    Mania,

    Cancer is a terrible thing for you to be presented with, but treat it like the Scourge it is! Positive thinking has goten me through a lot of battles since I broken my neck back in 86, and i’m sure you’ll have just as positive mind set going into this.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you, as I know all the hunter community will be. Lock n Load hon, it’s the fight you were born to win!!!

    Ravenhorn, Kul Tiras

  19. Brennos

    Best wishes to the Queen of Pets. Petopia has been a bookmark of mine ever since it first poped up on the interwebz. From the bottom of my heart I wish you nothing but a successful treatment process and hope you get well asap… Fuck Cancer, Fuck it hard, Fuck it hard in the anus.

  20. Asche

    I’ve been using your sites since the 1st day I became a hunter, and thats like 4 years ago, they have been invaluable for my wow hunter experience!
    Thank you very much for your hard work! I’m looking forward for your next post about how u won that tough fight u have ahead! my best whishes and best of luck!

  21. Galatheon

    Mania

    This Battle is one more Raid for you. we will pray for you and you will win this fight !! We are Hunters and we will stay with you !!

    Take Care !

    Galatheon, Baelgun

  22. U.E. Admiral

    As per usual, I don’t really know what to say, but I figure it is best to say at least that much rather than remain silent in the shadows.

    May you receive the best roll that God’s dice allows.

  23. Halfneck

    I was diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma back in ’95. I lost a chunk of muscle out of the left side of my neck/shoulder & use of my left arm/hand. I was given a 1 in 5 chance to live 3 years, 1 in 10 chance to live 5 years, and my long term survival rate is less than 5%. Not dead yet.

    Fight the odds & always act like you are that 1 in whatever. Thank you for the work you do on this site & best of luck with your surgery.

  24. Brad

    Stay strong through this, we all wish you all the best! And remember to keep all the good people in your life close around you- it is amazing how much a positive attitude like you seem to have can allow you to overcome. I look forward to reading the post Asche mentioned when you come through this! Also- Fuck Cancer!

  25. Clay Jewell

    I really hope for the best Mania! I have been coming to this site since I was a 13 year old kid starting WoW. I’m 19 now and still return to look at the forums and your nice posts every once in a while. I saw this and just wanted to say thank you for all the time and effort you’ve put in to the best hunter pet resource site on the internet. I hope you kick this things ass and continue to be big part of the WoW Hunter community!

  26. Roachkilla

    I am very upset to hear about your cancer. I just had an uncle recently pass away from the garbage that plagues our mortal bodies. You are in my thoughts and hopes. You have done fascinating work for our community and are very well respected. You have a large group of people rallying behind you and most of us don’t even know you past a simple website. This is what it means to have friends. Take care and good luck!

  27. Ryhe

    Mania,

    I know you don’t know me from Adam but i want to thank you for all your hard work and dedication to the best WoW class! and I also want to send you best wishes on your journey. I’m sure there will be dark and tough times ahead but please keep in your mind that there are Hunters around the world (including this one!) sending you prayers and well wishes!

  28. Gryzor

    Mania,

    Go forth and tame this beast, madam. You are in my prayers. Godspeed.

    Gryzor
    Screaming Bees
    US – Moon Guard

  29. Darkarrow

    Like many others out there, Petopia was one of the first WoW resources I learned to consult on a regular basis. My first and fav toon is my hunter. Thank you so very much for having a direct contribution on making my WoW experience a good one!

    Best wishes to you in hopes of a speedy and successful recovery! You will be in my thoughts.

  30. Trondheim

    From one hunter to another, get well soon. You can beat this! Thanks for your contributions to the WoW community in general and to the hunters in particular. I know I have used your site many times as a great reference!

    Best Regards,
    Trondheim the Red of The Venture Co.

  31. Bubu

    Fight it, girl.
    Believe me, that is not end-game boss. Definitely could be solo.
    Just grab tank pet and stay your ground. Use everything you can and FIGHT. You WILL WIN, no doubt.
    And then we will drop Brewfest Keg to celebrate your outstanding victory.

    Just fight it, girl. FIGHT IT.

    /Salute /Bow

  32. Dashel

    As a fellow hunter and lover of all creatures great and small I have faith that you have the strength (although agility is more our stat) and stamina (also good) to recover and beat this. Look after yourself and stay epic

    dash

  33. Shade

    Oh Mania, best wishes and luck! It is great to hear that it is not as bad as it could be-but it is still bad to hear about this. I hope the surgery goes well and that things turn out for the best.

  34. Wirhl

    Good luck and god bless. You’ll be in my prayers.

    I know you can kick this. You’re a hunter. Drop your trap, misdirect, disengage, DPS this sucker down and collect your loot.

    See you in Mists. :)

    Wirhl
    Kirin Tor

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