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Hello my name is Laura


laura

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So.. on Tuesday I was a normal healthy 40 year old woman (vegetarian! non-smoker!) with an annoying cough. On Wednesday I became a stage 4 lung cancer patient. 

It's all so new I haven't even had my biopsy yet - that's scheduled for Monday. PET for Tues, brain MRI for Weds. I am hopeful the PET and MRI will come back clean, and it's just in the lungs (both of them unfortunately). So I don't know what mutations I have yet, although it seems likely that I do - being a young never smoker. So I suppose that's promising, as much as anything in lung cancer world is promising.

It feels like I've joined a special fraternity with the world's worst initiation process. 

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Laura,

Your fraternity analogy is spot on!

Ok - here are some suggestions.  Read this instead of looking at survival statistics (do listen to Gould's essay at the link).  If you've already researched survival statistics, discard the research. Steel yourself for treatment.  Here are some points to consider.  Steps 3 through 10 apply.  

If your tumors are located in both lungs and if they are small, I've been reading about some radio oncologists willingness to try Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT) to eliminate the tumors in each lung.  I had a type of SBRT called CyberKnife when tumors metastasized to my left lung after my right one was removed.  So, I'd ask about that possibility, depending on the PET and MRI results, of course.

Gould talks about the importance of attitude and I am a believer.  So while waiting for the remaining diagnostics, start working on that sanguine personality.  One more thing -- as you look around the site, you'll note a number of us are long time survivors of late stage lung cancer.  To that point, if we can live, so can you.

At least you have completed the fraternal initiation ritual.  As a full member, you'll now have lots of questions so fire away.

Stay the course.

Tom

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Welcome, Laura,

How was it confirmed to be malignant if you haven't had a biopsy yet? For now, I'm just saying we're here to support you. You are probably feeling quite overwhelmed and have a very busy week coming up. Please keep us updated as the results come in and as you decide on a treatment plan. 

 

Tom,

How can I find out more about the possibility of the SBRT for lung nodules you mentioned? 

Thanks,

Cindy

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Hi, Laura,

Welcome to LCSC. This site is a great place to connect with others navigating a lung cancer diagnosis and to find resources and information. There have been several breakthroughs in research in the past few years and there are more treatment options in the pipeline. If you're comfortable sharing the results of your tests this week, some of our veteran members may be able to provide some insight and encouragement based on their own experiences. I am also happy to provide you with information about LUNGevity's support resources. Please know that you are not alone and that we are here for you.

With gratitude,

Lauren
--
Digital Community Manager
LUNGevity Foundation 

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  • 5 weeks later...

Hi, Laura,

Just wanted to check in and see how you're doing? Please post an update when you can. Hope to hear from you soon!

With gratitude,

Lauren
--
Digital

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