Concerned and looking for encouragement - Lung Cancer Support

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Concerned and looking for encouragement

sassykitty
sassykitty

I am new here. A spiculated nodule was found in my right lung along with some other nodules on a CT scan two weeks ago. I met with a pulmonologist yesterday and will have a PET scan on Monday. A previous smoker, long quit, I feel sure it is the "C" word. Needless to say and words of encouragement will help. In 2017 a scan was clear. Thank you.

26 Replies
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Miranda_GO2
Miranda_GO2Administrator

Hi sassykitty,

Thanks for joining our community. Welcome! Was this nodule found through screening? I know this waiting time between further testing is nerve-racking, but it sounds like your healthcare team is really being thorough. Often times, preparing your questions and learning about the screening process can help to combat worry. If you would like to talk through questions to ask your doctor about your follow up testing, please call us or email GO2 Support Team at 1-800-298-2436. We're here for you to help!

I'm sure the community will also with chime in and share about ways they cope with stress before and after medical tests.

Warmly,

Miranda

Thank you Miranda. I will definitely get in touch before my doctor appt. My pet scan is on the 9th. have a blessed day.

Yes Mirana. Low dose CT scan. The spiculated nodule is 8mm in size. Even though my PET is on the 9th, my followup visit is not until Apr1. Thanks again.

Miranda_GO2
Miranda_GO2Administrator
in reply to sassykitty

Thank you for this additional information. I'm glad you are being so proactive by being screened and your doctor is following up with more testing. In case you haven't seen our handout on nodules, here is a link to that: go2foundation.org/wp-conten...

As you will see on the handout, there are a number of factors about nodules that the doctor is looking at to determine the best plan for follow up testing and timing of testing. Have you spoken with your provider about sooner availability to address the turnaround time between the two appointments? Sometimes having this conversation about scheduling allows your doctor ( or other staff on the team) to directly address any concerns you have about the follow up plan. We'd be happy to talk more about everything when you reach out to us.

Hi again, Thank you for the link. I was going to call the doctor's office after the PET scan to see if I could get my followup earlier. Three weeks seemed like a long time to get the report and get going but since I am new to this I am glad for your suggestion. Have a wonderful day and thanks again.

I will be hoping for a very boring PET scan for you again this time, and for relief from anxiety. I was not diagnosed until StageIV, so whatever the results of the PET, it sounds like you will be “ahead of the game” and ahead of the more typical late-stage diagnosis that is so common. Best wishes!

Thank you so much. Have a wonderful day.

Welcome:)

Please stay positive.

Anlittle a year ago, I was told I had lung cancer. The X-ray showed a mass and CT showed a tumor.

I was very quickly sent for a PET scan and had an appointment with a cardio-thoracic surgeon. Pet scan showed a tumor in my lung. Fromthe time I first went to the doctor and my surgery was less than a month. I was having a lot of pain but no other symptoms. When I originally went to Dr, I gouge I maybe had a pulled muscle and needed a referral for physio.

I had VATS to remove the tumor. Turned out no tumor. I had (at some point) had a blood clot in my lung which no one knew. It cut off the blood supply to part of my lung and that part died. Then I developed a serious infection. The infection is what was showing up. It was still a very delicate surgery but NOT cancer. I’m still struggling with some pretty nasty nerve pain from the procedure but I’m fine otherwise. My pulmonary functions are great. I feel like all the praying I do and all the praying others did for me helped and I feel like I must still have a mission here. Firstly, blood clot did not kill me. Secondly, No cancerand there is a third thing:

Exactly where he surgeon made his cut, the pathologists found pre-cancerous cells in the piece that was removed. I am now being closely monitored so if anything manifests itself, it will be caught very early. So far so good. I’ve had 2 CT’s since surgery.

I pray you will be as blessed as I am.

Cancer can be really bad and the treatments, too but every day there is something new so you just stay positive. Get informed as much as possible.

I can’t answer any questions about cancer or it’s treatments but there are many here who can. If you have VATS surgery later, I can speak to that.

Sending you healing vibes and praying for the very best outcome for you.

Hugs

sassykitty
sassykitty
in reply to Glouie1

Thank you for all your information and happy for you it was not cancer. Sorry about the nerve pain as I have nerve pains in my head and am on neurontin for that. I will keep you in my prayers and I already feel blessed being 72 years old. I looked up VATS surgery and found that Ochsner Medical does do that type of surgery. Perhaps that will be what the physician chooses as it sounds much better than some. Have a beautiful day.

Hi Sassy! There is nothing worse than the first few weeks after something shows up on screens. I have two pieces of advice, get your Pet scan as soon as possible so you have a better idea what you are dealing with and if there is a finding suspecting cancer, go to a large cancer facility and push to schedule surgery as soon as possible. If it is cancer, it never ages well! Good luck to you that this is not the case. God bless you!

sassykitty
sassykitty
in reply to Gatorb8

Thank you. Yes from what I read lung nodules grow fast. I appreciate your encouragement to press on quickly. Have a blessed day.

Gatorb8
Gatorb8
in reply to sassykitty

The sooner the better. I would press my doctor to move up your appointment. You need to be formally diagnosed with lc before a surgeon will talk to you. The PetScan will probably be good enough. As soon as you get those results if it is cancer you may want to call that day to a major cancer center. I had to have a biopsy before Petscan but maybe yours is much smaller and that is not practical. At your stage you can be cured. It spreads to lymph nodes at any time and you never know when that will be. Good luck.

sassykitty
sassykitty
in reply to Gatorb8

Thank you for the support and encouragement. I saw the pulmonologist on the 3rd and PET on Mon the 9th. I will call and try to get an earlier followup. Not knowing if I was panicking or not, I really appreciate your help.

Gatorb8
Gatorb8
in reply to sassykitty

If you have lung cancer it is best to deal with it quickly and put it behind you! Good luck!

I am so sorry that you are going through this. I was a 13 year former smoker when I was diagnosed with emphysema and lung cancer.

Your nodule could be anything, or nothing, but if it is cancer, at only 8 mm, it was found early. My first time, I was stage 2 because when they removed the affected lung there were 2 tumors. The second time the tumor was found at 2 mm, and watched. After 11 months it was up to 8 mm. When I had the surgery 4 months later, it was just over 1 cm, and I was stage 1a. Cancers usually are not found until they have spread, and the person has developed symptoms, at that point, it is harder to fight. I count my blessings every day that my first LC was found early, and as a result so was my second.

Thank you Katherine for your words of wisdom and encouragement. I have had COPD/emphysema for many years. Being a former smoker I had a LDLC in 2014 again in 2017 and a reminder for one popped up on mychart.com. No symptoms of LC just my sob with the copd. Hopefully it is early. Again, thank you. God bless and prayers for your continued being cancer free.

If it is currently 8 mm, it has been found early. I am glad you have been getting the low dose CT's. My first LC was found accidentally, the tumor was 2 cm in size, large enough to show up on a chest x-ray. Until that point, I wasn't even aware I had copd.

You have already gotten some excellent advice from the others, so all I will say is; you got this. It was found early, you will get through this just fine.

Thank you.

Denzie
DenzieModerator

Getting a diagnosis is more like a marathon than a sprint. Depending on the outcome of the PET they may want to do a bone scan and an MRI of the brain before they can stage this if it’s cancer.

Where is the nodule located? Have they discussed an EBUS (endobronchial ultrasound guided biopsy) vs a needle biopsy. Not every nodule is accessible by EBUS. The reason I ask is that at 8 mm the nodule is very small and standard of care is to wait until it reaches 10mm for a needle biopsy. I wonder if they’re waiting for the results of the PET to determine an easier place to biopsy ( happened with my mom).

Does your hospital have a lung nurse navigator? If yes, contact them and ask to speed things along. Hopefully, your hospital has a multidisciplinary clinic where they schedule to meet all the doctors whose specialties touch your outcome including surgeon (if you qualify), radiation oncologist and the medical oncologist.

Please update us from time to time.

sassykitty
sassykitty
in reply to Denzie

8mm somewhat spiculated nodule adjacent to the right lower lobe bronchovascular bundle, 3mm nodule left upper lobe, clacified granuloma 3mm left lower lobe, two 4mm nodlues left lung base, granulomar right upper lobe, 4mm nodule right lower lobe. The doctor went over the 8mm spiculated and two other small ones with me on the pictures. Thank you for all this information. I should be prepared with questions when I go for my followup. Did not know about nurse navigators. My doctor is part of Ochsner Medical Center in Baton Rouge, LA.

sassykitty
sassykitty
in reply to Denzie

Just looked up my medical facility...have all you mentioned. ochsner.org/services/lung-c...

This website is AWESOME. Cannot remember how I found you and so happy I did!

Denzie
DenzieModerator

They have oncology nurse navigators according to the website. ochsner.org/services/lung-c...

sassykitty
sassykitty
in reply to Denzie

I noticed that and thanks to you I researched multidisciplinary clinic as well. Again, thank you so much.

Can't say I have much to say except they originally gave me 9 months to live for g 4 non small cell lung cancer, Non smoker. I am on year 3.25 now and still kicking. If I hold on long enough who knows ? Age 71 Vietnam veteran where I may have picked this up. Good luck and follow your doctors instructions and advice.

Thank you and congratulations for the years and each day that passes a new cure may become available. God bless you for your service and your message of encouragement!

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