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Old 04-13-05, 06:05 PM   #1
jppe
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50+ Cyclist Needs Your Support

Some of you may have seen my replies a couple of weeks ago on the post on sit bone pain:

sit bone pain curable?

Well, I've been to the doctor and had xrays and they were not helpful so a MRI was ordered. I just got back from the Orthopedic Doctor today. He looked at the MRI's and the memo from the radiologist and unfortunately it isn't as simple as he thought it might be (had hoped a Cyst). He's telling me a lot of these long syllable medical words that refer to different types of cancer. In fact my next visit is Wednesday with an Oncologist to take the next steps on determining what the heck this mass is that is between my sit bone and where you sit on the saddle. There were some other very small "blips" in some of the surrounding tissue that I saw and read about in the memo.

While I'm continue to be optimistic and hopeful it's just something that's been created as the result of irritation from the saddle, this is not heading in a direction I expected it to go. Needless to say I'm still trying to sort all this out. A LOT of different thoughts run through your mind at a time like this.

I have a 100 mile organized ride Sunday and our first time trial of the season Tuesday night. I plan to ride like heck just in case I'm forced to be out of the saddle for a while.

Thanks for letting me share my situation-it helps me sort my thoughts.
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Old 04-13-05, 08:12 PM   #2
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jppe,

Any words of wisdom or encouragement would seem bit hollow at at time like this, especially from someone you don't know. What I can say, is that you haven't read, "It's Not about the Bike", by Lance Armstrong, you should get yourself a copy. I have never had cancer, so I can't relate on that level, but Lance's book is an amazing testimony of determination and survival. I wish you the best outcome possible in the shortest possible time frame, and I will be thinking about you when I go for my Sunday ride.

Regards,

Brad Landin
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Old 04-13-05, 09:01 PM   #3
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jppe, my thoughts and prayers are with you. let's hope for the best. please keep us posted on
your prognosis. I think you're right to ride, better then staying at home and having your mind run wild.
hope your not too scared right now. think only postive thoughts and that you have all of the cycling
community pulling for you. oece, strength, live strong.
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Old 04-13-05, 09:32 PM   #4
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jppe, just trying to put a positive spin on it -- maybe riding the bike and having the sitbone problem has enabled you to sort out a problem earlier rather than later. I'd be interested to hear from you whether the specialist correlates similar problems with bike riding.

Anyway, good luck with it. Live each day as it comes and to its fullest.
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Old 04-13-05, 09:42 PM   #5
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Godspeed, JPPE.

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Old 04-14-05, 05:35 AM   #6
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You have my thoughts and prayers.

Not knowing for sure is the worst. It will help when you get an accurate diagnosis. 95% of the time it is something else, but the doc needs to be sure, which is likely the reason for the referral.

My sister has/had supposedly "Terminal" cancer, and today, 3 years later, is going strong after chemo with no signs of return, as healthy as can be, and at age 67 has restarted a long-lost violin career. But, every day is more precious to her than previously.

I know that sharing DOES help to clarify your thoughts, and please feel free to share at any time. Sometimes folks who have not been through similar experiences do not understand why it is so important to have someone to "talk" to.

Good luck.
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Old 04-14-05, 09:30 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the support folks!!

All of you are right on target with my thinking as well. I'm certainly prepared for whatever the diagnosis is but just not knowing gnaws away at you like crazy. I read Lance's book several years ago and have it handy if needed. I agree with the other poster that if not for cycling whatever this "mass" is I don't think I would have noticed it for a long, long time.

Again I greatly appreciate the support and kind words and will keep you posted. The visit with the Oncologist is next Wednesday. Can't get here soon enough!!
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Old 04-14-05, 10:24 AM   #8
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I'll be hoping you'll post some positive news from the oncologisit.

Until then, sitting around worrying is the worst thing you can do. As Rowan said, live each day to the fullist. So give it your best shot in the century and the time trials. We'll all be rootin' for you. And praying for better news next week.
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Old 04-14-05, 11:49 AM   #9
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We're all pulling for you. My advice is to stay on top of those docs to make sure that they really nail it on the head, and that you know *exactly* what you're up against. It would seem the indeterminacy is one of the hardest parts.

Best wishes.
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Old 04-14-05, 12:07 PM   #10
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Having been there, I can asure you that you are at the most worrying stage possible to be in, with Cancer a possible diagnosis. I was in this state for 3 months in 2001 before I was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer. At least once I had the diagnosis, I then knew what the options were.

Can't call it fortunate, but look at it this way, 10 years ago and the mention of the word Cancer and there was not a good chance of recovery. All that has changed and Cure and treatments of all forms of Cancer have come a long way in just the past few years.
Still that is the gloomy aspect. It has not been diagnosed yet. In the meantime try not to worry, hard I know, but look forward to the diagnosis, the treatment and the new life you will have without the massive great big burden sitting on your back wheel.
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Old 04-15-05, 06:35 PM   #11
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Keep riding, keep riding, keep riding then ride some more.

My wife has a brain tumor. It's been 6 1/2 years since it was first diagnosed. After the initial radiation TX the tumor returned last year. The docs at UCLA medical were amazed when she was up out of bed in less than 24 hours following surgery. To their question, "do you exercise regularly," she proudly answered "I'm a cyclist."

In the twelve months following that surgery she endured chemo therapy every month. Twelve days out of each month she felt too lousy to ride but for the rest of the time she was back in the saddle. We even managed a metric century once.

Last month we celebrated by purchasing a Santana tandem and are looking forward to many miles together this year.

A tremendous amount of prayer was offered up throughout her trial and we're certain that it helped. We also believe that staying in the saddle helped maintain her physical stamina and positive attitude.

While your waiting for a definitive diagnosis and throughout whatever treatment you choose, you must continue to ride when ever possible.

If for no other reason than to see the dumbfounded look on your doctor's face.

We'll be praying for you.
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Old 04-18-05, 11:15 PM   #12
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jppe,
I'm new here and I want to offer you my solidarity.
You had very nice words in this thread. I only want to add (based on my observation of similar cases on friends and relatives) That, the worst part is getting the bad news (if there is a bad news...). I know it's easy to say it. I'm sorry. But in the worst case scenario you will still continue to live a long and active life! One of the best things of living these days are medical advances and CF frames :-)
My best Regards and please excuse my intromission.
Pablo
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Old 04-18-05, 11:17 PM   #13
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You have my best wishes. Just like a long hill, never give up.
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Old 04-19-05, 01:51 AM   #14
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I had the same cancer as Lance Armstrong and now am fine and am riding more than before.
As a cancer survivor I hope all goes well with you, but in saying that I was told by
one of the oncology "experts" that a positive attitude to recovery was as important
as the treatment. So where possible expect the best results.
I hope you get them.
Good luck
Cycler.
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Old 04-19-05, 06:15 AM   #15
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You folks are an incredible support team!! I can't thank you enough for the many words of encouragement.

I drove 350 miles to Alabama and did the Cheaha Challenge Century this past Sunday. Needless to say there was a lot to think about while driving and riding. It was really a nice event and if anyone is within driving distance I would highly encourage folks to try and attend this one. We were blessed with picture perfect weather for riding which NEVER hurts. The night before they blocked the streets of Anniston and had a street party and crits.

The ride is a really neat but different route. It is an out and back--51 miles out to the end of the pavement in Cheaha State Park. The ride starts in Piedmont and the first 20 miles are relatively flat. The next 60 miles there is about 6700-7000 feet of climbing. I have a new altimeter and the longest climb was 3 miles with an average grade of 5 per cent. However, there were some other climbs of a mile or less with grades up to 10-12%-ouch!! In fact, on the return trip I set a new PR for maximum speed of 51+ mph--what a rush!!

Other noteworthy items were you could turn around at different points to suit your riding needs. Volunteers were the most hospitable and encouraging I've ever seen. The only negative is meeting the lead riders who are on the return leg while you're going out and you still have a few miles to the turn around!! You don't get that on loops!! They even posted ALL the ride times for the finishers by sunrise the next morning. Oh yeah--the ride started with the song Sweet Home Alabama over the PA system which got a huge roar from the group.

I was very fortunate to catch a great group going out the first 20 miles and also got in a perfect group on the return 20 miles--that always makes the ride go faster and much, much more enjoyable. I was fortunate to finish around 6 hr 30 mins (including 13 mins of stopping) which put me in the top 100 overall and about 16th of the 40 or so 50+ cyclist in our age group.

I was very pleased for those results this early in the year. I'll definitely put this one on the calendar again for 2006. It is a terrific early season event to get in some climbing over a longer distance.

I'll even admit I got pretty misted eyed after I had finished the century because of it going so darn well and because.........well it's hard to explain but it felt like I had a lot of "extra" support and motivation for this one.........

Now, tonight is the first of our 9 Time Trial events for this year. I have a new solid disc rear wheel and a HED3 front wheel and a new time trial set-up so I'm really excited about the possibilities there. I'm just looking to get faster than last year and give some of my buddies a little push.

My appointment with the Oncologist is the morning after the time trial (this Wednesday) and at least if it turns that I will not be able to ride for a while I'm busting with the passion to get back out and ride.

Thanks again for letting me share my thoughts. I just can't put into words how much it helps.
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Old 04-20-05, 08:29 PM   #16
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I had my doctor visit today and was very impressed with him. He is supposedly one of the top cancer surgeons in the Southeast and I really like his approach. He takes all the data and information and meets with a team of other physicians, radiologists, etc, every Friday to confirm his diagnosis.

He's seems very confident that my problem is NOT cancerous, as the other physician and radiologist had suggested. He thinks it is an irritation of a bursa (sp) sac (or something equivalent) brought on by cycling and I sit a lot during the day for my office work and driving. He thinks that because "I'm of age" (over 50) and of such a fine specimen (low body fat count) that there is very little padding (fat) between the skin and the sit bone. He suggested I continue to tinker with equipment to see if I can't get some relief. He also suggested that it will probably never go away.....There were other spots in the MRI that I asked him about and he had a good explanation for those as well. He said it was probably due to adjustments I might be making to compensate for different things while riding which was completely agreed and was in synch with stuff I had actually been doing.

He also said a cancerous mass continues to grow whereas mine swells and has receded at times. I'm to continue to monitor my lump and if it gets to a certain size to let him know. He's going to consult with the medical team Friday but feels very certain they will agree with him.

He said everyone's physical makeups are amazingly different. He offered that he had just operated on a female that to look at her did not have any "abnormalities". He said that he operated on her butt in the same area where my knot is and that he had to cut through 4" of fat to get to those tissues. He thought I probably had about 1/2" of fat in that same area.

So, unless I hear differently it looks like it's not as serious as I might have thought and something I'm just going to have to learn to deal with.

I offer all this info just in case someone else experiences a similar issue.
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Old 04-20-05, 08:46 PM   #17
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jppe, thanks for the new information. got my fingers crossed for you that it isn't cancer. to quote Red Green "I'm pulling for you, we're all in this together."
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Old 04-20-05, 09:19 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blandin
jppe,

Any words of wisdom or encouragement would seem bit hollow at at time like this, especially from someone you don't know. What I can say, is that you haven't read, "It's Not about the Bike", by Lance Armstrong, you should get yourself a copy. I have never had cancer, so I can't relate on that level, but Lance's book is an amazing testimony of determination and survival. I wish you the best outcome possible in the shortest possible time frame, and I will be thinking about you when I go for my Sunday ride.

Regards,

Brad Landin
Agreed on all counts. In fact, "It's not About the Bike" is a near-perfect guide to dealing with a serious illness or problem. Lance got second opinions, relied on a strong social network, asked questions, and fought like hell. In many ways his book is more impressive than his tour victories. Well woth reading for so many reasons.
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Old 04-21-05, 12:23 AM   #19
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jppe,

Good deal. (Hmm, my fat fingers initially typed "God deal".) Lots of us were with you on this one.

Tyson
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Old 04-21-05, 07:41 AM   #20
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Hang in there! Last week we learned of 3 people who were either diagnosed w/ cancer or had a relapse. The relapse is in a teenager. Ride all you can! Godspeed!
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