Waiting for X-ray results: Hi, I used... - The Roy Castle Lu...

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Waiting for X-ray results

Knic profile image

Hi, I used to visit here when my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer when he was 53 sadly he passed when he was 56 :,(

I now find myself in a very anxious situation, a few weeks ago my husband noticed I was coughing more. He insisted I see a dr, so 10 days ago I had a chest X-ray. I’m still waiting for my results and feeling so so worried.

My symptoms are a cough: I cough every day though better in bed, it’s not productive although sometimes sounds like there’s something on my chest. The reason I need to cough is due to a sensation right at the top of my chest, lower throat area. I also have shoulder ache, left side.

I was so shocked to read that it’s more common in young woman than people think, I’m 35 and although I have not smoked, I grew up in a heavy smoking household and obviously have a family history too.

So anxious waiting for results and living through in my mind what we went through with my dad.

My mum is worrying too, and says it would be her fault if I have it - which is not helping the way I’m feeling.

Sorry for the essay, just needed to talk to someone.

37 Replies

Dear Knic

Sorry to hear about the sad loss of your Dad.

If there is anything abnormal on an x-ray, you usually hear within a few days.

It may be worth calling your GP as they will have the result and ask them. Ten days is a long time to wait and you would probably have heard by now if there was anything of concern or that would require further investigation.

I take it you have had a Covid test and if not it may be worth requesting one, which you can do online through this link: gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test

If your chest x-ray is normal and negative Covid but your cough persists, perhaps go back to the GP or ask for a respiratory referral.

If you would like to discuss anything, you can either email us at lungcancerhelp@roycastle.org or call our free phone nurse led helpline number on 0800 358 7200

All the very best

The Roy Castle Support Team

Thank you for your reply.

I have rung my drs daily and they are no help at all, they just say that the results are not back yet - they really just not seem to care :(

I have taken several Covid tests and all have been negative.

RoyCastleHelpline profile image
RoyCastleHelplinePartner in reply to Knic

Hi KnicThat is good to hear your Covid tests are negative. I have sent you a private message in regards to your reply.

Kind regards

The Roy Castle Support Team

I can totally understand your fear. Since my dad’s diagnosis I can’t stop worrying that everyone I love will end up with cancer as well as myself.My dad had an X-ray and was told to wait afterwards then they told him to call his GP urgently.

The next morning he called the GP who already had the results as they’d seen a large mass on the top of his right lung.

Hopefully in your case no news is good news.

I gave up smoking 13 years ago but my dad had been given up 20 years when he was diagnosed.

I won’t say don’t worry as you are bound to worry but hopefully you have nothing to worry about.

Sending big hugs xxx

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to simlut

Thank you so much. Sorry to hear about your dad and I hope he is doing ok?

Going to chase up the drs today and see if I get anywhere.

Thank you for the big hugs, they are very gratefully needed and received xxx

I’m sorry for your loss and the worry. I really hope your doctors can help. I wonder if it’s worth booking an appointment to discuss your anxiety about Cancer they might chase up your results. They do have a duty of care and it seems unfair to make you wait this long with your history. As understandably your worried. I hope it’s just a cough. Xx

Thank you for replying. My drs really don’t seem to care about it, my husband actually went there last night to talk to them and explain why I’m so anxious. They told him I need to make an appointment with the dr and ask him to chase results. It seems silly I need to waste an appointment that someone else could have, to ask the doctor what I’m sure the receptionists could do :(

I also have the option to go private, but kind of feel like I don’t know what to do - wait for the results or go private.

Personally I wouldn’t go private - you’ll get your results I would imagine quicker. I was private and was told to go NHS after my results and they have been amazing. I’m so shocked with all the news about cancer diagnoses around covid they are being like this. Book the appointment as the stress won’t be helping you. They ha s a duty of care. Xx

Thank you, I’m so glad you’ve had a great experience with the nhs- they are amazing. Although very much a postcode lottery sometimes, when my dad was diagnosed in 2012 things seem to move slowly, when it spread in 2015 they really weren’t very good.

I have booked a telephone appointment with the dr who will ring sometime this morning, I’ll let you know how it goes xx

Fingers crossed for you - make sure you tell them how anxious you are, it's not fair to make you wait with your family history. Good Luck xx

My husband was sent for a chest x Ray & the radiographer told him the result would be with the GP the next day, she must have seen something when checking the image, he had lung cancer. I also had a chest X-ray & the same lady said the results would be with my GP in 10-14 days, mine was clear. I know this isn’t the same for everyone but, try not to worry. If you’re unhappy with your GP then I’d go private if you have that option to give you answers.

Good Luck x

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to KT22

Thank you so much, I have a telephone appointment with the Drs today which the receptionists told me I need to chase up results.

I hope your husband is doing ok, and I’m so glad your results were clear xx

KT22 profile image
KT22 in reply to Knic

Sadly my husband lost his battle. I’m currently in the middle of an investigation with the hospital as clinicians failed in his care & treatment. He was treated very badly.

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to KT22

I am so truly sorry to hear this. Good for you for taking a stand, they shouldn’t get away with what they’ve done and also you are helping future people ensure they get the right care.

My dad also wasn’t treated great, almost felt like they didn’t care. When his cancer spread it would never have been found if I hadn’t of pushed and pushed, it shouldn’t be like that for anyone xx

KT22 profile image
KT22 in reply to Knic

Thank you, sorry to hear your Dad wasn’t treated well. I promised my husband hours before he died that I’d do everything in my power to ensure what he went through didn’t happen to another family. My next step if the clinicians don’t give answers is the Ombudsman. Do hope you get good news with your X-ray result, I’ll keep everything crossed for you. X

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to KT22

Thank you xx

HiLike others have mentioned, when I was diagnosed they rang me the day after my X-ray and told me to go in for a CT scan a few days later - so they have obviously seen something on the X-ray and fast tracked the result. I hope no news is good news in your case. I was 43 at the time of my X-ray and, whilst I have had quite a bit of treatment and surgery, I am still hear to tell the tale aged 50 now and living a near to normal life.

Good luck and keep ringing GP. Worrying about it won’t change what they eventually tell you although I know it is hard to not worry. Fingers firmly crossed for you xx

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to Janey_H

Wow! I love that you are doing so well, it’s so good to hear.

I have a drs telephone appointment sometime this morning so will chase results with him when he rings and see if I get anywhere.

Thank you so much for taking the time to reply xx

Sorry to jump on again, so yesterday after seeking advice on here I contacted PALS about my delay on X-ray results - the lady has just emailed back:

I've checked with the X Ray Department and there has been a delay in getting your results sent to your GP. They have assured me that this will be done today and your results should be with your GP this afternoon.

We apologise and hope that this has not caused you too much inconvenience.

If you need anything else from us then please do let us know.

Kind Regards


PALS Officer

I now feel incredibly anxious and convinced that it’s not clear, I don’t know just something in the wording of what she wrote :,(

in reply to Knic

Hi Knic, I totally understand where you’re coming from . My dad died of lung cancer 10 years ago and my mum has just been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer.Being an ex smoker (I’m 47 and gave up 25 years ago) and always having had a cough (maybe habit?) I was paranoid I had cancer after my dad passed and again now my mum is poorly it’s back !!! That old dread and worry.

I went to docs with my concerns, had a chest X-ray and had a letter about a week later saying all ok. That put my mind at ease a little but I’m still worried and feel there’s something lurking. I keep looking at private scans as I’m sure my doc won’t send me but then I think twice and tell myself to get a grip!!

I’m sending you lots of love, I hope all is well (I’m sure it will be as like the other reply said, my mums came back the day after as they had obviously seen something)

Be strong x

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to

Thank you so much for replying.

I’m sorry to hear about your dad and your mum too, what an awfully hard time for you. No wonder you have anxiety around lung cancer.

Your dr sounds like they were very supportive and it’s great that they offered you an X-ray. It sounds like you are doing well with having a grip on things and not rushing to pay out for a private X-ray.

I’ve just spoken to the dr and still no results, I will try again this afternoon.

Thank you again for taking the time to reply, big hugs xxx

All the reactions you've outlined are normal - especially when you've lost somebody or related to somebody who had lung cancer. Lung cancer in young women is rare but because it's rare it tends to make headlines more often... smoking per se doesn't guarantee that everyone will develop lung cancer - I never smoked but was diagnosed in 2011. I had surgery to remove the 7cm tumour and half left lung and was back at work and swimming 3 months later. Not all chest x-rays that don't look quite right turn out to be lung cancer - scarring, infection, pneumonia, TB, inflammation can all impact the image but it's understandable you may think of more 'sinister' conditions with your family history. Since my diagnosis and treatment I've ended up in hospital several times with nasty chest infections - and had x-rays, CT scans, bronchoscopies but all turned out to be infections which whilst nasty, improved with the appropriate medication. Sadly the pandemic has put a lot of pressure on imaging departments in hospitals especially given the current 'cough' campaign and overlap with covid symptoms so many tests are taking longer to get results than would have happened pre-pandemic. As others have said, the NHS is the best place if you have a cancer diagnosis - at the time of my surgery there was no space in the NHS theatre as the hospital had become the 'centre' for bariatric surgery for the whole area so I was asked if I'd attend the private hospital on the NHS with the same surgeon but it was the only one in a large vicinity with ICU which is essential for lung surgery. Many private facilities are fine for day cases, outpatients etc but for cancer, much greater knowledge and facilities exist within the NHS in the UK - although some clinicians also offer private practices. I found my 'pathway' fragmented without access to a clinical nurse specialist and other aspects that would have happened automatically in the NHS but didn't due to their inexperience of lung cancer. I'll keep fingers crossed that your cough is infection and that you receive your results soon but whatever it is, there is help and support available including talking to nurses at Roy Castle lung cancer helpline.... hope you get some answers and treatment soon. good luck.

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to JanetteR57

Hi Janette,

Thank you so much for replying, it’s amazing to hear that you are doing so well.

I have gotten myself into quite a worry flurry, and feel like I’ve pressed pause on everything. Then I get moments where I want my results back, but at the same time know that’s they may bring a scary wave of anxiety.

I haven’t booked private, I’m going to wait for my X-ray results and see what to do. I have doubts in our local hospital due to how things were with my dad, but you do make totally valid points in what you’ve said.

Thank you again for taking the time to reply.

JanetteR57 profile image
JanetteR57 in reply to Knic

You're welcome and don't feel bad - as I said, totally understandable reaction. Your GP practice receptionists or secretaries won't discuss things with you so booking an appointment (usually virtual these days) is the best way to go but the GP should also contact you anyway to go through any results but the fact they haven't confirms they haven't had the results yet. I re-read the PALS letter and don't see anything in the words used that would send any alarms ringing - written word has no tone but it's easy if we are fearing something to put the emphasis on words in a different way than might have been intended by the writer. hopefully you'll hear soon and be able to reduce your anxiety/stress levels as they can also impact your breathing and general health... fingers crossed. thinking of you.

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to JanetteR57

Thank you so much Janette.

I will try and be patient, and hopefully ring this afternoon and be able to find out what’s what.

I will try and keep my stress levels down too, since yesterday I’ve given myself a stiff next and also can’t move my upper back hurting. My rational mind tells me it’s tension, my anxious mind tells me it’s connected to my cough.

Thank you again for taking the time to reply, speaking to people definitely helps x

Hope that you have managed to see your GP or at least speak to him to get your results. Great that you contacted PALS and got results. If there are any queries re your X-ray please ask to see a Consultant Respiratory Physician xx

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to Bow-19

Hi Bow, thank you for your reply. I have just spoken to the dr and still no results. I will try again this afternoon, though I know the receptionists are so limited on what they can say and I will likely not get anything other that a lot more anxiety until I can speak to the dr. Xx

Hope you hear soon x

Hi KnicOMG the waiting is awful and I'm anxious for you ,it's terrible the length of time you seem to have to wait for your result, hopefully it's negative which may explain why it hasn't been reported yet.

In my thoughts please keep us posted hopefully all will be well .


Knic profile image
Knic in reply to janeg4

Thank you Jane xx

I have chased up the X-ray department but they wouldn’t tell me the results. The drs now have them but the receptionist wouldn’t tell me the result. So I’m thinking it’s not good :,(


Firstly thank you to everyone for your kind comments, it’s really helped having your support xxx

So after a very tearful conversation with the X-ray department she found my results and said she’d email them straight over to the dr.

I then had to call the surgery, the receptionist said they needed to be read by the dr and that wouldn’t be until tomorrow. After crying and begging she said she’d get someone to call me today.

The nurse rang and said she had my results and they were clear, of course I feel so relieved… however my anxious mind is now telling me that the nurse has read them wrong :’( is this a possibility?

So pleased your results are clear. Although I’m not medically trained I have my husbands medical notes & the X-ray results were written clearly so hopefully the nurse was correct. X

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to KT22

Thank you x I went to the drs thus morning and he also said were clear, he wasn’t much help with helping with my cough - and has said to go back if it’s there in 4 weeks. He asked me if I smoked or have ever smoked and I said no, I didn’t bring myself to tell him about my dad or that I grew up with smoke. Hope I’ve not done the wrong thing x I think I just don’t want to cause myself more anxiety, I’m unsure what he would want to do if I told him about my dad and I just want to try and see if it goes away x

Good news the X-ray was clear. My cough is acid reflux! Hopefully yours goes away soon. X

Knic profile image
Knic in reply to KT22

Thank you x how do they diagnose that, if you don’t mind me asking? I was reading up on that, although my cough doesn’t fit with being worse at night as it actually at the moment doesn’t wake me at night x

I have chronic IBS & had lots of tests including an endoscopy which helped diagnose the reflux. I have medication now which helps but still cough when it flares up. X

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