Patient Stories

Teki Dalton’s Kidney Cancer Story

Teki was an active member of his community and a member of many organisations’ boards. He was a named as a Paul Harris Fellow for his work with The Rotary Foundation and the community. Before his passing he conducted safety and Survival at Sea courses for his own sailing school and competed either as crew, sailing master, navigator or skipper in fifteen Sydney to Hobart races. He crossed the China Sea and raced in the Mediterranean, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and represented Australia in yachting.

Symptoms - could I have kidney cancer?

See video version of the Teki Dalton story
Kidney Cancer in Australia – A Patient’s Story via Kidney Health Australia on Vimeo

Read Teki’s own account of his journey with Kidney Cancer

One morning in March 2005 I discovered a thick blood mass in my urine. My new GP arranged for me to see a urologist who arranged for scans to be taken. I returned home but collapsed shortly afterwards due to the excruciating pain.

I was rushed to hospital, scans were done and arrangements were made to remove the kidney. On removal the kidney weighed 2kgs. The cancer had also travelled to the Inferior Vena Cava and this had to be patched. The operation virtually cut me in half and I was in the hospital for 14 days.

Even though I had presented to a GP I had been seeing for many years, and several specialists, including a urologist for a hernia operation, typical symptoms such as varicose veins and unusually high blood pressure, no diagnosis of a kidney disorder was made.

In May 2006 after a regular CT scan check-up, a number of cancerous lymph nodes were found in my abdomen. Their removal required another operation which involved another cut from sternum to groin.

Another CT scan in November 2007 revealed several cancerous lymph nodes in the left chest area. At this time there was a trial drug named Sutent and I was happy to be part of the trial although the side effects made me very sick most of the time. In November 2008 the nodes in the left chest area were continuing to grow and I had a course of intense radiation.

In February 2009 scans did not report any new deposits.

In May 2009, I was experiencing unusual pain in my right hip and a scan and xrays reported huge deposits of metastases in my right hip and left pubic bone. Nothing can be done for the pubic bone but I had a massive operation that replaced the hip joint and two thirds of the femur.

In July 2010 I was referred for radiation to help with severe pain in my hip and pubic bone. Only then it was revealed that another tumour the size of a tennis ball had developed and was attached to the pubic bone. This had not been reported by the regular scan I had had, not long before the ones at the oncology radiation department. About the same time I went on another trial targeted drug therapy called Afinitor. I have been managing with this with few side effects. I have a few new metastases in several ribs and sacroiliac.

I appreciate the without the continuing love and support of my wife, my oncologist who comes up with new schemes to keep me alive, the pain management experts and the love and encouragement of my family and friends.

Kidney Cancer Support Service – 1800 454 363or you may email kidneycancer@kidney.org.au if you have any questions on Kidney Cancer.

You may wish to refer to and download our summary Kidney Cancer Fact Sheet or other Kidney Health Education Resources.

Updated 12 December 2013