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Dad Is in Process of being Diagnosed with Lung Cancer

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Hi All,

I am new here and my dad is in the process of being diagnosed with lung cancer. I have cried many tears over the last week. Dad is 70, He was diagnosed with emphysema in late 1994 or early 1995. Dad was diagnosed with emphysema after experiencing shortness of breath. He smoked for nearly 40 years when he stopped smoking in Feb. 1993.

What has led us to now... Back in April, Dad said that he needed to go see the doctor. Mom was coughing and couldn't get rid of her cough. She made appts. for both of them to see the doctor on Thurs., April 10th. Dad had a chest x-ray and a spot showed up on the x-ray. He had pneumonia. We were puzzled because Dad had a pneumonia shot last fall. He went back to the doctor on Fri., April 18th. The doctor ordered chest x-ray and then a CT scan on Dad. Dad went in for the CT scan on April 23rd. We did not get the results until Mon., April 28th. The CT scan revealed a tumor on the right lung along with a few enlarged lymph nodes. A spot on the liver along with an enlarged lymph node was noted as well as. An appt. was scheduled for May 9th with a pulmonary specialist. A CT scan of the abdomen was ordered. On Wed., April 30th, Dad underwent the abdominal CT scan. Dad's primary care physician called us and told us that Dad needed to get into the pulmonary specialist ASAP. On Thurs., May 1st, my oldest brother went to the pulmonary specialist with our parents. The news was not good. The pulmonary specialist ordered a bronchoscopy and a PET scan. The bronchoscopy was performed on Fri., May 2nd. My middle brother and I took Dad to the appt. After the biopsy, the doctor who performed the scope came out and talked to us. She told us that the tumor looked angry and that it was blocking his right bronchial tube. She took several biopsies. Angry tells me that the cancer is aggressive. We should have the results of the biopsy late tomorrow. Dad's PET scan is scheduled for Wed. afternoon. Surgery is not an option for Dad because he has less than 50% of his lung capacity. He did OK with the bronchoscopy. I believed that they used Versed and Fenatyl to sedate him.

That is where we are now.

I have been researching the various types of lung cancer online. I know that Dad's prognosis is not good. His lungs are not in good shape due to the emphysema. I am not a pessimist... just a realist.

We have a support system in place. The immediate family lives in close proximity. I am one of four kids. The oldest is 47 and the youngest is 42. I will be 44 next mon th.

I feel terrible for my oldest niece (Dad's oldest granddaughter) as she is getting married next month. She is very close to her grandpa. This is having a huge damper on what should be one of the happiest moments of her life.

Kristi near KCMO

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Hello Kristi and welcome.I am so sorry about your fathers bad news.I know this must seem overwhelming for your family.Try ti just take it one day at a time and please keep us up todate on what is going on.My prayers for your father and his family at this time.

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Hi Kristi

You will find the members here very friendly and more than willing to pass on any information that may be helpful.

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Hi Kristi. I am so sorry you have to find this board. The beginning is so scary. Hopefully your dad will start some treatment soon. There are lots of inspirational stories here and people who will answer any questions you might have. Stay strong.

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Hi All,

Thank you for the welcomes, prayers, and good thoughts. They are much appreciated.

I will know a little more late tomorrow. That's when we are suppose to get the results from last Friday's bronchoscopy. I will post when I know the results of the biopsy. We won't hear anything about the staging until after the PET scan. I am not looking for the PET scan results to be available until Friday or Monday. Again, I will post the results of the PET scan when I get them.

As I get results, I am sure that I will have questions.

Kristi

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Hello Kristi, I am sorry to learn of your Dad's diagnosis.

The scariest part is around the initial news and prior to planning the treatments.

The best help includes a solid support system. This is a very helpful site. Also, having positive mode at home and in the family is key (I know, easier said than done).

Please let us know how things are going. I remember so well how I was over three years plus ago. There were many tears shed in the shower.

Then, joining an online group, finding those who had "walked the walk" gave me the help in knowing that Bill and I were not alone.

Keeping you in my thoughts,

Barbara

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Kristi,

I'm sorry for the news about your dad. I will say a prayer and keep your family in my thoughts. Now that you guys have a diagnosis you can get a plan into place.

Take some time to visit the SCLC forum here. There ARE survivors. Your dad can be one too.

Keep posting and keep us posted.

(((hugs)))

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Kristi...

Sorry you've reason to find us, but very glad you did. Please, let us know how we can help you.

I live about 3 hours north of KC and visit on a regular basis some friends I have down there...wonderful area.

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Kristi-

I am so sorry anout your dad's diagnosis but I am glad you found us. There are many very inspiring stories here with people who have beat all odds and are doing well living with their cancer.

It is so overwhelming in the beginning - I look back and see myself as I was then - with a constant deer in the headlights look about me. But once a treatment plan is in place, you can really begin to fight this horrid disease.

I will be keeping your family in my thoughts - please update us on dad as soon as you can.

Hugs - Patti B.

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Kristi,

Sorry to hear about your Father.

I too have just recently joined this site, and I am ever so grateful, My father passed away almost 2 weeks ago from SCLC, he also had mets to the liver at diagnosis. My Dad lived for 3 yrs after that. I have met some wonderful people who are encourging and are here to "listen" and answer questions.

Good luck to you and your family.

Shelli

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I am so sorry to read your post. Welcome to a wonderful family here at LCSC...please know we are here for you and will help in any way that we can.

I know where you are...I have been there. My dad was diagnosed with SCLC, which was VERY scary. We have, however, been blessed with remission, and continue to pray every day for all those suffering from this dreadful disease.

Stay strong and know we are here for you...

Blessings,

Jen

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I just got home from the hospital. Dad was admitted this morning. He is in a considerable amount of pain. Five milligrams of morphine as needed is not working. My mom and I told the nurse and she is going to try to another cocktail. I will be heading back to the hospital this evening with my youngest brother.

We met the oncologist. The consult was ordered because the nurse told me at one point. At 12:30, the oncologist came in and spoke with my parents and I for the first time. We all three really like him. The oncologist was very upfront with us, which we really appreciated. We learned about the treatment plan and got the results of the PET scan. The PET scan pretty much revealed what we knew... There is spread to the liver (couple of spots) and the some of the bones. The prognosis is 1 to 2 years with treatment. Without treatment, it would be a month or two. We are not looking for a cure. There's a chance that the treatment will fail my dad. The oncologist said that he has only seen this in a handful of patients. The oncologist wants to do radiation first to help decrease my dad's pain. He is guessing 10 to 15 sessions. He will get a radiation doc into see him either today or tomorrow. Could possibly start radiation before he is discharged from the hospital. Chemo will start after radiation begins. I asked the oncologist about what would be used... He told me Carboplatin and VP-16.

Dad is having an MRI this afternoon. They are doing an MRI of the brain and spine. The internist will be by to see him after 5 PM (after office hours).

Our immediate goal is to get my dad to my oldest niece's wedding on Sat., June 14th. Quality of life is still the main goal.

We are in the process of getting his advance directive set up. I am one of the alternate agents along with my oldest brother.

That's where we are now.

Kristi

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Kristi: It sounds like oh so much to take in all at once. You and your family must really be struggling with it. I love the thought of having the immediate goal of getting your Dad to your niece's wedding. After I read it, I thought to go to my desktop calendar and write it in. It may sound weird but I don't think you can have too much positive energy directed towards a goal.

Good luck to you and your family and pain relief very soon for your Dad.

Judy in Key West

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As of this morning, my dad still had not had his MRI. One of the oncologist's associates came by while Mom and I were visiting. He said it should be today as they want to get started with radiation ASAP. I will talk with my dad's nurse when I go up later.

Kristi

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I forgot to update here.... My dad finally had his MRI yesterday afternoon. Preliminary findings show no mets to the brain. His MRI was of the brain and spine and lasted 2 1/2 hours. Right after the MRI, he had his first radiation treatment. He had one this morning (since he still inpatient).

Kristi

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Sorry to hear about your Dad and his SCLC diagnosis. That was good news that he has no Brain mets. Keep us posted Hope they have his pain under control.

Donna G

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I went up and visit my dad late this afternoon and early evening. First of all, he really wants to come home. We are having problems with him telling the nurses everything. He's stubborn as all get out. :) The docs want to start chemo Monday if he is still inpatient. He does have a spot on his skull but it has not penetrated the brain. If he is released before Monday, the doc will call us to set up an appt. My dad still has pain and there is no way they can let him come home. I saw him get winded walking from his bed to the bathroom and back. I told Mom he needs oxygen here at the house. I can't thank the nurses enough for the great care they have given my dad. And for answering my questions. My mom has pretty much left it up to me to ask the questions. I need to make myself a mental note to ask about the dose of morphine my dad is getting by pill.

My youngest brother told me that he and dad had a nice visit this afternoon. My brother said he was at peace. I am the same way... I have reached peace. Sure, it will be tough when my dad passes away. We are taking it a day at a time. We are living in the moment.

What is sooo funny is the amount of people who go and visit my dad. People are there thru the day and always in the evening. I think that my dad had a steady stream of visitors today from 3 til after 8. I haven't seen other patients get visits like my dad. I've spent quite a bit of time at the hospital the last two days. I am glad that I can do it.

Kristi

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