Jump to content

Don't know much...yet.


Recommended Posts

My dad, age 61, came over Sunday night (sept. 23, 2007) and told me that they found out he had lung cancer. After I was finally able to speak again, I started asking questions. He said that when he came back from vacation the end of June 07 he noticed that when he coughed there was a small amount of blood streaking in the mucus. At first he thought perhaps it was from his sinuses. After it didn't go away, he finally told my mom and they sceduled an appointment for a physical. This wasn't until August 21, 2007. He told the doctor about the blood, which hadn't stopped, and was given a chest x-ray. The chest x-ray came back clean and the doc said not to worry, but said to be safe and find out what "IT" really was they ordered a ct scan. This came back showing an approximatley 3 cm tumor, and shadowing over 1 lymph node. A PET scan was then ordered and showed there is no cancer anywhere else. It is all contained to his right lung.

One doctor he spoke with said that she was 90% sure it was cancer and that surgery was not an option. Said to start radiation and chemo. He went yesterday, Sept 24, 2007, and spoke with a new doctor and she said that there has to be a biopsy done to determine that he has cancer first. She at least is optimistic. She said that he is very healthy. He has no chest pains, no shortness of breath, has lost weight but was trying because his sugar had been up, and has a clearing of the throat, not a true persistent cough. He also said that since the PET scan he has had no more blood in mucous. The doctor also said that she suspects the slow growing kind of cancer if it is.

And yes, until two years ago my father has smoked since he was a teenager. This is such a slap in the face. When he had a hip replacement 2 years ago they did chest x-rays to make sure he could handle the surgery, and all was clear. So he felt that he was lucky enough to have smoked all those years and not have any signs of cancer that he stopped smoking from that day. Why, oh why, couldn't they have done a ct scan then?? :cry:

I guess I just am so confused about why his tumor wasn't found on an x-ray and some that are smaller are. Is there any way of having a quess as to what stage it may be with this limited info we have? He has refused treatment here at our local hospital if the biopsy comes back positive, and has requested a referel to John Hopkins Cancer Center in Maryland. Does anyone know any suggestions about doctors there.

I know that my info is limited, I am just trying to get a crasp on things so I will be prepared for the next steps. Everything still seems so serele. I am not ready to lose my daddy. :cry:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So sorry that you have reason to be here, but welcome! You should find lots of good answers to your questions and lots of support here. I lived in Fairfax, VA when I was diagnosed with lung cancer four years ago. This is just a suggestion: Go to Hopkins for another opinion. Have the surgery there or at Inova Fairfax Hosp. - just off I 66, just before the beltway. I can recommend a surgeon, pulmonary specialist, and oncologist there - they really are wonderful and very supportive. And Ffx Hosp. is an hour and a half or more closer to Harrisonburg. I don't have any suggestions for a Dr. at Hopkins, but when you make an appointment there, ask for someone who specializes (sp?) in lung cancer. (The surgeon, where ever you go, will be a thoracic surgeon).

This seems to have been caught in an early stage. I'm not an expert, but my guess would be 1B or 2. They may recommend chemo and/or radiation to shrink the tumor before surgery. I'm sure that Hopkins will tell you that the first step should be a fine needle biopsy to determine what kind of cancer he has. Since they think it is slow-growing, it's probably NSCLC.

I had a chest XRay in Feb. 2002 and when compared to one from 1999, the radiologist thought it was ok. I had another one in Apr. 2003, prior to a minor surgical procedure and the radiologist thought I had pneumonia. After 2 rounds of antibiotics and another 2 XRays, a CT scan was recommended. It showed a 2.8 cm tumor in my upper R. lung. The PET scan showed cancer just in that one spot. I quit smoking then.

I'll send you a pm with the Ffx. doctors names. Good luck. Let us know what he decides to do.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks to both of you for taking time to read my lenghty post, and for your words of encouragement. After what little time I have had to do my own reasearch and from the limited info we do have, I to was hopeful he had caught it in the early stages. He goes tomorrow to schedule the biopsy. So at least we can get this underway and see what our next steps to beat this are!!!!

Also, thanks Muriel for the pm, I printed it off and will show it to my dad.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

John Hopkins is one of the best places to go. It is on the National Cancer Institute list for approved compressive cancer centers. Here is a website that you can look at. There are many good places to go that are not on the list too. The important thing is that they have a team approach to cancer and a lot of experience treating lung cancer.

http://cancercenters.cancer.gov/cancer_ ... /skjh.html

I would want to know why surgery is not an option if there is no lymph node involvement. Sometimes the tumor may be too close to the heart or may involve a critical artery. If surgery is too risky for whatever reason, cyberknife surgery is a safe alternative. It is a very accurate form of radiation that is designed to kill the tumor only while conserving the rest of the lung. Here is a link where you can ask radiation oncologists about cyberknife. Unfortunately the site is down now, but you maybe able to go there a little later.


Here is a link where you can read about cyberknife. It includes a search page too look up the location of cyberknife centers by state.


I see that John Hopkins does not have one but Sinai Hospital of Baltimore does.

Don M

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.