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Update on my FIL


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Hi everyone...I think that this is the board that I should be moving too! We, I guess, are 99% sure that my FIL has NSCLC...won't know what type for 100% certainty until we have a tissue sample.

I attended the appointment with them yesterday with the surgeon - we were missing a lot of information and I was finally able to get answers to many of our questions.

We started out getting some information that we were not really prepared for - apparently he has a hiatal (sp?) hernia and a portion of his stomach has moved up into his chest cavity, and he probably has had a mild heart attack at some point. The inferior wall in the right ventrical of his heart is not functioning properly - not something serious enough to prevent him from having surgery.

He has a 1 1/2 cm tumor in his right upper lobe. They are 99% sure it is non-small cell, but could not tell me what specific kind. They do not know right now if it has spread to his lymph nodes, although they are "highly suspicious" of two of his nodes, based on CAT and PET Scan results.

As of now, they have scheduled a bronchoscopy and mediatinoscopy for Sept 1. If the lymph nodes come back neg, then they will do surgery (resection, upper lobectomy) on Sept 7. If the lymph nodes come back positive, then they want to do a 6 week round of chemo and radiation, and then surgery a few weeks after that. Because of his age, they don't feel that they can do the VAT procedure - something with not having clear fissures between the lobes.

It is scary...and it was so hard to sit there with them and be the strong, clinical one to ask all the questions, but that is what they really needed from me. I think I did ok. They want me to write it all out and send to all of the kids, so that everyone knows exactly what we are up against. Right now, I think that they are just ready to get moving. The doctor and the fellow doctor (some kind of resident) were terrific, and spent a ton of time with us. I was very happy about that, and I think that it made them much more comfortable too. The doctor even had a lung transplant that was coming together this afternoon, and still was able to spend a lot of time going through all my questions.

At least now we know...and now we can move on with dealing with everything. I want to thank everyone again for giving me the tools I needed to get the info the family needed. And he is feeling good for now...wouldn't even know that he has this..I guess that that is good for him too!!

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Sometimes it's best to know what you're dealing with so you can begin treatment and start kicking this monster in the butt!!! I know how hard it must be for you to have the job of digesting all this information and then passing it along but it sounds as if you're doing a great job. I hope things go well for your FIL. Please keep us posted and know that we will be thinking of you and saying lots of prayers.

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Glad that you are in your FIL's corner...it is hard to be proactive for yourself at the very beginning of this journey. As you are discovering, you can never have too much information. Sending my best as you all continue forward with treatment options.

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They are so fortunate to have you to help them sort out all the facts. Every lung cancer case is unique , as is the patient. The beginning of diagnosis is the hardest and the most overwhelming. You are given so much information at one time and you spend a lot of time waiting for this test and that test. It can seem like an eternity and there is so much to digest and accept. I promise you that it does get easier once all the facts are in place and a plan of treatment is begun. Hang in there and lean on the folks on this board. There are so many wonderful, caring and knowledgeable people here. Keep us informed.

God Bless,


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Sounds like you were just what your FIL needed --- and his kids too. I'm sure they are anxious to know what's going on. Those meetings can be so exhausting with all the information that comes flying at you. I always went home, went over my notes and had more questions. If they were pressing, I called. If not, I saved them for next time.

Your FIL is lucky to have you in his corner.

gail p-m

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So glad you attended the doctors visit and they in tuned answered your questions.

His doctors seem to be very caring and that is so important. I am sure you feel somewhat better that you met them and was able to receive answers to your questions.

I hope all comes out well and he could get operated on first. But if not then they will go with plan 2 and first do chemo,then the operation.

Keep us posted as far as the test he has coming up to determine if there was any lymph nodes activity.

Prayring for your FIL for good results from the tests.

Try not to worry so much. His doctor has plan and he will come out of this fine.

We are always here for you. Your FIL is so lucky to have you in his life.


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hi Darci.

Based on your report to us here, you understand the process very well. It is one step at a time. And the bronch and mediastinoscopy sound like a perfect plan at this moment. Also, the time line doesn't seem inappropriate.

Keep up the good work, the advocacy, and the hub for the family. They are all welcome to come here as well, tell them.

Cindi o'h

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