We went to see the surgeon on Thursday and this time we were all so much more relaxed. They took an Xray first and when we were in the consulting room I asked if we could both move round the desk to take a look. It was extraordinary. My upper remaining right lung lobe is doing its level best to occupy the space and my diaphragm has indeed moved up. I am kicking myself now that I didn't ask to take a snap of the Xray with my phone - it would be good to be able to share it with you.
The rearrangement of my innards does, I now realise, explain some of the odd little aches and discomfort I've had below the site of surgery and around my stomach area. With the diaphragm moving up that must leave some more space below. Connective tissue has no doubt been straining and stretching a great deal.
I asked what size the tumour had been at the point of surgery. He replied that it was difficult to say as there was so much scar tissue. Histology reports on the tissue removed confirm the lung cancer diagnosis. I do have some metal in me - titanium staples to fasten the tubes.
The surgeon asked whether I had some loss of sensation in the right side of my chest. That was a interesting question, because indeed I do. The reason he divulged is that he used some muscle tissue from between my ribs to cover stiching on the bronchus and to strengthen it. I may not regain that sensation because of course some nerve damage was inevitable, but it's a small price to pay. No cancer was detected in any of the lymph glands removed and there was no sign of tumour in the upper lung lobe. While he said the oncologist might offer me radiotherapy he, the surgeon, couldn't see the need.
That sounds to me like a great success and I did thank him effusively, saying that nothing I could say could adequately express how grateful I was to him. He responded most charmingly and so modestly by saying that it didn't matter, but I could see that he was himself very pleased with his work and satisfied with the outcome.
I visit the oncologist next week. There's just the question of my thyroid now and whether or not it glowed during my last PET scan and whether or not there is still any cause for concern there. I'm inclined to think not.