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Tom K

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About Tom K

  • Birthday 12/04/1956

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  1. Tom K

    Test results

    When I grow up, I want to be just like you.
  2. Hello All, I haven't been very active on the board lately but I’ve been moving on with my life and trying to come to terms with all that has happened over the past 3 years. Yes, I’ve officially made it 3 years past diagnosis. The people on this board were a tremendous source of hope over that time. Your posted profiles and many stories helped me believe it was possible to beat this disease. During my routine checkup my PCP mentioned that my RBC was 4.2 which finally put it back in the normal range. She showed me a screen which tracked my RBC for the past 2 years and how it gradually increased from a low of 3.0 shortly after I completed the consolidation chemo. She has been giving me B-12 for a year and she seems to think increasing my RBC will give me more energy and maybe help me get past this depression I’ve been dealing with. My question is for other long term survivors. How long did it take for your RBC to return to normal after chemo? I guess I’m just curious if I’m still following the “normal” recovery pattern for LC.
  3. Check the terms of the policy. You may be able to pay the doctors yourself and then file a claim directly to the insurance company for reimbursement. Some provider offices will bill you with a net 90 invoice that allows you to delay payment while you are waiting for the Insurance company to process your claim and send you the check. In these types of scenarios it is your responsibility to contact the insurance company to see if the treatment, test or procedure is a covered benefit and at what rates. You should talk with the Office Manager at the providers office and with your insurance company to see what your options are. Good Luck.
  4. Tom K


    Hi, I also had a cough after treatments. It turns out it was caused by a drug called Lisinopril that I was taking to control Blood Pressure. Ask your doctor if any of her other drugs could be causing the cough.
  5. Hi Snappy, I had a PET scan about 6 weeks after surgery and it revealed cancerous lymph nodes that were not apparent on a PET just 8 weeks earlier. That PET scan provided the location of the nodes and the doctors were able to treat them with radiation and chemo. You may want to ask your doctor if another PET would help in your husband’s case and if additional radiation is even an option.
  6. Tom K


    Julia, No words will ease your pain. But please know there are many who share a small portion of your grief. Aaron was a strong man who refused to let his disease keep him from his goals. I admired him greatly.
  7. I am sorry you are here Kristina. It does sound like your Dad is having a tough time of it but I am glad you took him to another doctor. With this disease you have to be assertive and if you don’t get help from one doctor move on to another until you are satisfied that everything that can be done is being done. Depression is pretty common amongst us cancer patients. He should ask his doctor about an anti-depressant. A lot of the members of this community have had great results with them.
  8. I also had similar treatments. I drove myself to and from the radiation treatments 4 days a week and my wife drove me on the day I had chemo (the Cancer Center insisted I have a driver). My experiences with chemo were just like Ned’s; sleepy while I was receiving it ( because of the Benadryl ) then wired for a day and a half with the steroids. One of the pre-meds I received was Aloxi for nausea. It worked great and I never had any real problems except hiccups which would show up about 2 days after chemo. After 4 weeks of concurrent chemo-radiation, my energy levels dropped noticeably and I would take naps just about every afternoon and still sleep 8 to 10 hours a night. But I was still able work 6 hours a day (I would take off early every day and get radiated on the way home). Your husband’s treatment is difficult but doable.
  9. Hi Vernon, I also had a lobe of my right lung removed. The surgery was followed by chemo and radiation therapy. I’m still cancer free 2 years later. If your surgery was to remove a NSCLC (Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer), you may want to ask your doctor if there would be any benefit in receiving adjuvant chemo therapy. I have read that is the standard of care for anybody who has had surgery for stage 2 NSCLC or higher. Some doctors also prescribe that treatment for stage 1b NSCLC. Either way you really should ask your doctor about it. Good luck and do not hesitate to ask lots of questions here.
  10. First The Basics.. M/F?: M AGE?: 51 Hometown: Rochester NY Favorite.. Restaurant Food: Italian Drink: Coffee, Pinot Noir, Chocolate Milk, Rum & Coke Holiday: Christmas Car: Any Muscle Car from Chrysler in the 60s and 70s Thing to Do On A Warm Summer Day: Yard work (the perfect yard really is priceless) Thing To Do On A Rainy Afternoon: Video Games, Movies, Internet, Read, Movie: Matrix, Close Encounters, Day the Earth Stood Still, Oh heck, just about any sci-fi movie Song: Couldn’t list them all but mostly top 40 stuff TV Show: Current favorites are Family Guy, 2 & Half Men, House and Law and Order All time favorites are any of the Star Trek shows Perfume/Cologne For The Opposite sex: Giorgio still does it for me Flower: Roses Are You Romantic? Every once in awhile Last Time You Had A Candle Lit Dinner? I am pretty sure it was back in the 80s before the kids were born Ever Kissed in The Rain? Oh yea Who Was The Last Person You Kissed? My wife Rina How Many.. Tattoos Do You Have? None Piercings Do You Have? None Have You Ever.. Been Skinny Dipping? Yes Been Skydiving? No Been Outside Of The US? Philippines, Japan, Korea, Spain, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Mexico, Canada, Belize, Bahamas, Puerto Rico and Miami Random Thoughts.. What Is Your Favorite Memory? All the memories of my wife and children Places You Would Like To Travel To? Europe and China Ideal Job In A Perfect World? I’m an IT systems manager today and this is my dream job Ever Want To Drive A Race Car? Who hasn’t? Your Weakness? Food, Food, Food Last Thought Before You Fall Asleep? Counting my blessings each and every night while I drift off What The Future Holds... What Is The One Thing You Want To Accomplish in your lifetime? I want to travel a lot more and see as much as possible
  11. Frankly, I’m so glad to be cancer free that my other health problems seem minor. I’m still recovering from a bout of depression, but I choose not take meds for it and rely on my faith instead. Like a lot of folks in their 50s, I take maintenance meds for blood pressure and cholesterol. Right after I finished treatments in 2006, I started having a lot of joint pain which got progressively worse. So now I take Celebrex daily and I have Tramdol for the really bad days. Interestingly, for the past 6 months I’ve been faithfully exercising 3 to 4 times week and I think that has done more to reduce the joint pain than the meds. My blood sugar was high back in August and I was officially diagnosed with type II diabetes a few months ago. I started Byetta in November and I have lost 15 lbs. I had to switch to sugar free dark chocolates and make a few other dietary changes but I have it under control. As I said, compared to some of our friends here, my problems are minor and not a lot different than a lot of guys my age. My doctor said that if I lose enough weight, I may be able to control my diabetes with just diet and stop taking the Byetta. Are there any diabetics here that have been successful at doing that?
  12. Sorry you are here but you are welcome and please don't hesitate to ask questions.
  13. I can’t explain the science, but my doctors told me concurrent chemo-radiation my best chance for achieving a cure. 2 years later, I am still here to testify to their success.
  14. I agree with Rich, you need to get a second opinion.
  15. Hi Kelly, I also had and upper right lobectomy. My experiences were very similar to the others that posted here. I had an epidural inserted before surgery and it stayed in for a couple of days which made the pain tolerable. After surgery, the doctors inserted a chest tube to drain fluid. It was very uncomfortable. The chest tube was removed after 3 days and I started feeling much better very quickly. It is important to cough up the mucus in your lungs after surgery. Coughing was painful even with the epidural, but it was doable. Some people found hugging a pillow helped them. I continued taking oral pain meds for about 10 days after surgery then found I no longer needed them. I did all the breathing exercises frequently and I started walking for a ½ hour a day about 2 weeks after surgery. I was able to go back to work about 4 weeks after surgery ( I work in an office). After surgery, I received concurrent chemo-radiation treatments which were a lot more difficult than the surgery. Today, I still have some minor residual nerve pain that runs along a rib from the scar to the front of my chest. It is not so much pain as it is sensitivity to touch. I am told this is very common. For the past 14 months I have been very conscientious about doing aerobic workouts at least 3 times a week (for weight control). The aerobics have had a huge impact on my lung efficiency. A PFT in December indicated my lungs are now at 104% of expected efficiency. So 2 years after surgery my lungs are not causing any limitations to my life. I strongly recommend you agree to the surgery. It is your best chance for a cure and in the long run, it should not greatly impact the quality of your life.
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