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IBF and Lung Cancer

Fay A.

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I've noticed several posts where people are discussing tummy trouble. The gastroenterologist I've been seeing told me that a percentage of people who have a diagnosis of Lung Cancer also present with symptoms of IBF or Crohn's disease. Inflammatory Bowel Syndrome is diagnosed in about 30% of Lung Cancer patients.

The good news is that there are now a number of good medications available to treat IBF.

If you have Lung Cancer and are having symptoms (constipation, diarrhea, abdominal pain-upper and/or lower) ask your physicians for a referral to a Gastroenterologist for help.

In recent weeks I've lost two friends and fellow Lung Cancer Survivors to complications from abscessed or perforated bowels. I'm dealing with a probable bowel abscess right now myself.

Best wishes to all,

Fay A.

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I think we need a new Gastro Dr too. Ours does tests and biopsys and says no problem. But no suggestion to how to resolve all these uncomfortable symtoms. They all seem to think that if you have Cancer, that is causing your every problem, and if they can't find more Cancer in your stomach you should just be happy. Anne

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I would want to read a copy of the GI scoping report, as well as read the pathology reports on any biopsies that may have been taken. If the report reads "..mild inflammation.." I can tell you that it translates into real world experience as "Man, my insides feel terrible!".

When they did the colonscopy did they also do a Gastroscopy with a small bowel follow through? Parts of the small bowel can be a difficult place to access with a scope, or at least that is what I was told.

Look, I'm not a doctor. And the problem with having any kind of cancer and undergoing treatments is that many of the GI symptoms can be related to the drugs we take. But my personal experience has been that I saw 2 Gastroenterologists, had two colonscopies done and was told there was nothing wrong but some "minor inflammation", even though I was loosing about 1/4 to 1/2 a cup of blood a day. The amount of blood loss was contested until a subsequent hospitalization gave the docs "measurable proof under observable conditions". At any rate I found this most recent Gastroenterologist and he has had no trouble finding the areas of severe inflammation, along with this area of suspected abscess. He is more thorough than the ones who came before him.

If your family member is continuing to say they are having problems, then I would find another Gastroenterologist, or start asking more questions of the first one. I wasn't making up, nor exaggerating my symptoms.

Other things besides IBF and medications can contribute to these same symptoms. If you've had lung surgery, especially the big operations, there can be permanent damage to the nerves that govern "intestinal motility", and you may need to take medications to deal with those problems.

If your loved one says they are having problems I would push for answers. The inability to feed makes all aspects of living life as a cancer patient more difficult. We can't heal if we don't eat well. And we can't eat well if it hurts.

Just my ten cents on the subject.

Fay A.

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