Rick Cauley Rick’s Recovery

First post: Aug 26, 2018 Latest post: Apr 13, 2019
Welcome to the CaringBridge site for Rick Cauley. As some may  or may not know, Rick was diagnosed with his 3rd primary cancer, this time Stage 3 invasive bladder cancer. We will be using this page to keep family and friends updated on his recovery.

In November 2017, Rick and Steph officially became snowbirds moving to Fort Meyers, FL, to trade in dreaded Minnesota winters for some fun in the sun! Soon after getting settled in, Rick started to notice blood in his urine, which prompted him to see a urologist in February 2018.  During this visit a tumor was identified that was blocking the ureter from the right kidney. In early March, they attempted to resect the tumor via a cystoscope at Gulf Coast Hospital in Fort Meyers, but they were not successful so a stent was placed to keep the ureter open. Following the procedure, surgery was scheduled to try to resect the tumor again, but was aborted because the area around the bladder was too scarred from previous radiation which impeded the visibility the surgeon needed to perform the procedure. Because of this, a decision was made by doctors and medical staff, following multiple tests, to not undergo chemotherapy and further treatment in Florida. Instead Rick was referred back to Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. 

In early May, Rick and Steph returned home to Mankato. On May 9th and 10th Rick saw a urologist at Mayo to establish an overall treatment plan. They recommended 4 rounds of chemotherapy prior to surgery. Rick was able to setup the chemo treatments in Mankato at the Andreas Cancer Center starting in June, but was only able to complete 2 of the 4 rounds due to the risk of further compromising his kidneys. A decision was made in early August to proceed with surgery, which is scheduled to be performed on Monday the 27th. 

On August 23rd Rick completed a series of pre-op tests, and after meeting with the surgeon learned the surgery will involve removing his bladder, kidney, prostate and surrounding lymph nodes. In addition to the removal of his bladder, they will also construct a new bladder using part of the bowel. The surgery will be long and typically lasts at least 6 to 8 hours. Please send prayers and positive thoughts for a successful surgery and speedy recovery.

Interesting Fact: Rick took care of patients having a similar bladder procedure during his first job as a nurse on the urology surgical floor at St. Mary’s in Rochester back in 1974.

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