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New here, Mom in the process of diagnosis


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Hi all... I am so glad I found this place. It will be nice to talk to people who are going thru the same things... we can lean on each other.

Where do I begin? This has all happened so fast. On 6/5/07, my mom's dr sent her to the ER, thinking appendicitis? She was having trouble taking a BM, and feeling pain in her mid section. Round of tests reveal mass on her right lower lobe and adrenal gland and liver. Sent home PET scan ordered. Scanned Friday, Results on 6/11/07. Results are hypercell activity in masses, consistent with malignancy. Dr. set her up with cancer center. We spend the next 2-3 days getting her signed up for everything, doc says off work for 6 wks at least. But I have the feeling she's not going back ever.

Appt set for 6/22 @ Cancer center, but mom heard this doc was bad so she wanted the other doc, and first avail. appt. was 6/28.

Then, on 6/13 @ 11p she calls me...I rush her back to the ER with almost heart attack symptoms (she had one around 4 yrs ago)... more tests, and they admit her so she can get the care she needs. She has no insurance, and now no income.

More tests, and now small spot on left lung noted also. Also dx w/ emphysema. Still wants a cigarette. She might get to come home tomorrow...if she does, she'll be sent home w/ oxygen therapy, for one week, b/c she has to stop plavix b4 they can do biopsy. Cant biopsy lung for fear they will puncture it. So they are going to biopsy the liver to get the official dx.

I am scared. I am not ready for this. I had a feeling eventually this would come- she never follows up w/ tests, etc... but now she is... I think she is terrified...but what I can't figure out is why in the world she still wants to smoke. We are taking things one day at a time, and as a family we are dealing with this. No one is giving us a time frame, although it sounds pretty bad. No idea if mom wants chemo/radiation, or if she just wants to manage the pain until she passes. I hate waiting for results. They did a cat scan with barium last night to see why she is having trouble with bm's...i hope there aren't more masses.

At any rate...glad I found this place. Seems very supportive, and I so need that right now.


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I take it you have never smoked, but I can totally understand why she still wants to smoke. 1. She's very addictied to them. 2. They are her strength right now. 3. It's very hard in a crisis to put them down. And 4. She probably feels, it's to late to quit now anyway. Plus those of us who smoked or did smoke know how strong that love affair with cigarettes is like. You can't make sense out of none sense.

But for now, the issue isn't her smoking. She needs to find a good team of doctor's that are willing to go the extra 800 miles for her.

Please let your mom know that lung cancer is 1. Beatable, and 2. Treatable. There are a LOT of Lung Cancer Survivors in this world and most of us are doing just fine.

Best wishes and please don't harp on her for her smoking, I can assure you she is beating herself up over that one more then anyone will ever know.

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Welcome to the site. If you would like to learn a lot about survival in a hurry, go to this web site:


You can order a free copy of the book Fighting Cancer. You can click on the links and read the book on line until you receive your copy. There is also a link to places where you can get a second opinion, which I strongly recommend. Keep us posted.

Stay positive, :)


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Welcome. Plese don't think that there is absolutely nothing that can be done for your mom. I think it is important that she have an oncologist that she feels comfortable with and that she can talk to. Don't be afraid to get a second or third opinion. It in te beginning it is all overwhelming and confusing, please feel free to ask any questions you have. Someone here generally has experienced it or can help you find the information you need.


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Hi Mandi, your so young to have to deal with this, but it is here and you try and stay strong for Mom.

I'm sure with all her health problems right now she would quailify for SSI of SSD and help with her medical bills. I certainly know how it is to worry about those things. I try not too but it is hard. I just give up my job last week it was a tough decision but I've had bi-lateral pneumonia and my oxygen was below 95 before that and I just am not going to push myself anymore. I spent 4 days in the hospital and had alot of time to think things through. I'll work on my health first so I can be here for my family as long as I can. Good luck sweetie keep us updated.

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Mandi...hello and welcome, though I hate that you had to find us.

I know how terrifying it is when all of this starts. It feels like one piece of bad news after another and always "something" coming up. Soon, though, once all the testing is complete, you and your mom will settle into a routine and it won't be *quite* so overwhelming.

As someone else said, get on the phone to the social security administration and get paperwork started for disability. The Lance Armstrong Foundation also has help available (I don't know much about this), and the local Department of Human Services should be able to let you know if there's anything they can do, also.

Now...as far as smoking goes...Connie's got it right on! Those cigarettes are your Mom's best friend and biggest enemy and don't believe for a moment that when she lights one she's not thinking about it. It's on the minds of most smokers who either have cancer (any type) or have a family memeber. I was having a cigarette minutes before my mother died of lung cancer...as were my brother and our step-father. It's one of the most horrid addictions. Just remember that it's your love and support that will get her through this...and she CAN get through this. As Connie also said...it's treatable and it's beatable.

Please, keep us informed on how you and your mom are doing...sending love and prayers...

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Welcome to this site and I am also sorry you have to be here. THis site has been one of my greatest resources. Ask any questions you may have. The people here are always sharing advise and stories.

Please keep us posted on your mom.

Prayers to your family,


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