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Introduction: Mom Diagnosed Last Week

Beth R

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I am so so sad, I just don't know what to do, except focus on details that perhaps can be controlled. No one suspected lung cancer, she only smoked for a couple of years, and only socially at that. She never smoked again after 1974. Prior to this she was healthy, no problems except for some minor arthritis.

The Social Worker started talking to her about Home Health Care and Hospice. She is not that bad yet! She says she is not ready to go right now. She wants to go to Mayo Clinic. Does anyone know--can you just call Mayo Clinic and go there?

Also, I am assuming she cannot be fired from work, due to Family Leave Act, but that is only for 12 weeks, and likely treatment will be much longer. What happens? How can she keep her insurance? I am afraid she won't get good care on Medicaid.

Should she apply for disability?

If anyone has any advice for me and how I can help her, please let me know. I would very much appreciate it.


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Your mom should get that second opinion. There are a lot of new treatments. Could you post more about her cancer stage etc. I was stage IV and I have been cancer free since November2005. There is always hope. You will get plenty of support here.

About the insurance it can be maintained up to 18 months after you leave a job because of cobra. Keep us posted.

Stay positive, :)


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Beth, I am so sorry you are here...I know you have SO MANY questions.

First, lung cancer affect all kinds of people not just 30 year smokers. There isn't the "sense" around this disease that people think there is.

Second, the otherwise healthy thing is by far the hardest thing to swallow out of the whole thing...there often aren't symptoms. All I can say is I am sorry and understand your frustration.

You can certainly make your way to any facility you want...sometimes you have to be pushy...but do it if everyone will be happier for it.

Re; Hospice. #1 what she has may be treatable...get a second opinion and so on. HOWEVER, to contact hospice, get them familiar with you your family and your mom's wishes while she is good beats doing it if the time ever comes where she is not.

I believe a stage 4 patient can get diability...she can also get cobra if she does quit work for 18 months... there are lots of folks here familiar with this type of stuff.

God bless you and the rest of your family esp Mom. You are in my prayers.

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Hello Beth and welcome,

I am very sorry about your Mom's diagnosis. You have gotten a lot of excellent advice here. A second opinion and even a 3rd are never a bad move. The important thing is that your Mom find a doctor willing to treat her aggressively and one who will fight for and with her.

Please keep us posted and let us know how we can help,


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Hi Beth,

I'm sorry to hear about your mother, I would look for a second opinion- at a cancer hospital. My disgnosis of stage IV was almost two years ago and until today, I have been fine (toay I woke up feeling awful - but I am on two chemo's that could be causing a problrma-.

I think companies have to accommodate treatment for cancer. You should speak with the social worker who will have informstion on disability, medicare, cobra, etc.

Best wishes.


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I think everyone has covered your questions, I will just welcome you. I know the beginning is hard-- it's good you are asking all these questions and trying to plan ahead. There are many treatment options for her--I hope you go to Mayo if that is what she wants. Good luck.


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Hi Beth ~

I am so sorry to hear of your Mom's diagnosis. She will be in my prayers, as will your family.

LOTS of excellent advice (as ALWAYS) here. But I'll chime in on Mayo... (The following is NOT an advertisment - simply my own assesment 8):wink: ) You don't mention what part of the country you are in, but as for visiting Mayo? Sure, she could go there. I live near the Scottsdale, AZ facility. (My son works there, as well :wink: ) There is a link on this site for Mayo. You may contact them at the location of your choice. They'll ask for her reports, scans, etc. and usually provide some sort of preliminary assessment prior to scheduling her for an appointment. I really like their integrative approach - VERY impressive facility!

PM me if you'd like further info. Wherever your Mom seeks treatment - I wish her the very BEST outcome!!

Yours in HOPE!!


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Welcome to a wonderful board with lots of information from very caring people. Please post more about what type of treatment besides the radiation they are offering your mom. If she is 65 she will go on Medicare right? Yes to apply for the social security disabaility ... I was approved on my first try but it does take a lot of paperwork and a several months to get things going.

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Welcome to the lung cancer support community. I am so sorry that you need to be here, but I want you to know you have come to an amazing place. Please know we are here for you.

I do not have answers to your questions, but I do want you to know that you are not alone. There are many here who have similar things to what your mom has, and they will be of much help. Please know that smoking doesn't cause every cancer...there are many here who never smoked even one. This disease sucks...there is no way around it.

God bless you!


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