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Lauras

Spiculated nodule

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I did, and yes, it was.  Spiculation is one of the telltale signs of a cancerous nodule.  Together with the uptake, I'd say there's a pretty good chance it is cancer.

BUT, the good news is that an 11mm (1.1cm) tumor (assuming that's what it is) is very small.  There's an excellent chance that it will be completely treatable (maybe even curable) with surgery alone.  

My tumor was about the same size as yours.  I had a lobectomy a little over a year ago and have needed no further treatment.  I go in twice a year for scans to make sure everything continues to be fine.  The surgery I had was a VATS surgery (laparoscopic), which was very simple, with little pain, speedy recovery, and no noticeable effect on my breathing or anything else.

When do you follow up with your doctor?  Have you been seeing a pulmonologist up to now?  

Oh, and welcome!  Glad you found us.  :)

 

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I am scheduled for surgery august 30th. The nodule is in a complicated place towards the middle of my chest near major vessels and stuff  so its hard to get to. Its so small they are afraid a biopsy may not be accurate. They will go in and try to remove the spot. A pathologist will look and see if its in fact cancer and if it is they will remove the upper lobe and lymph nodes.

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Hi Lauras. 

I also had a small tumor that "looked like" cancer but didn't light up the PET scan at all. It couldn't be biopsied without removing the whole lobe, so I had a lower right lobectomy by VATs, like LexieCats. The surgery was fairly easy--they took out a bunch of lymph nodes too. My recovery was fairly fast and I'm fine today with no impairment of my breathing, so far as I can tell. I wasn't particularly fatigued before my surgery or after my recovery. Let us know what other questions you have and how we can support you.

Bridget

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I'd be very surprised if your fatigue has anything to do with the cancer (assuming that's what it is)--with a tumor that small,  it would be very unusual to have any symptoms at all.

How did they happen to find the nodule?  Were you being checked out for something else?  Or were you being screened for lung cancer?

Lots of things can cause fatigue, so it's probably a good idea to follow up with your primary care doctor on that.  

Your surgeon is following a similar plan to what mine did--remove the nodule and examine it, then proceed with the lobectomy if it turns out to be cancer.  Are you having VATS surgery?  Sometimes the tumor location won't allow that, but if you can get it, your recovery time will be MUCH faster and easier.  You might want to check out our "surgery" forum for tips on recovery.

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Lauras,

Best of luck with your surgery on Aug 30th!!

I've had two lobes removed due to tumors that were over 8 cm and 9 cm in size. The first one was removed using VATS, and the second one was so large that it was done by thoracotomy. 

No matter what the surgery, just keep moving forward and your body will start to regain strength. Continue to have conversations with yourself that are positive! If you have any questions that you would like me to answer, just ask!! 

I don't think the fatigue would be the result of a small mass either...could be due to other factors (feelings of anxiety, not getting as much sleep, etc..)

 

take care,


Ro

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On ‎8‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 4:37 AM, Roz said:

Lauras,

Best of luck with your surgery on Aug 30th!!

I've had two lobes removed due to tumors that were over 8 cm and 9 cm in size. The first one was removed using VATS, and the second one was so large that it was done by thoracotomy. 

No matter what the surgery, just keep moving forward and your body will start to regain strength. Continue to have conversations with yourself that are positive! If you have any questions that you would like me to answer, just ask!! 

I don't think the fatigue would be the result of a small mass either...could be due to other factors (feelings of anxiety, not getting as much sleep, etc..)

 

take care,


Ro

hi ros

hw is it going?

did you receive any chemeotherapy after surgery?

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Lauras,

I'm doing great! I had chemo in Jan and Feb. Went back to work full time at the end of April last year. I work in a public school so I've had the summer to continue my recup.

I return to work again next week. Eventually, you get stronger and start to adjust. The chemo part was difficult for me, especially after having two surgeries. I go every three months for CT scans now...How is it going with you?

 

Ro

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Before you know it, it will be Aug 30th and time for your surgery!! Sending you more positive vibes for surgery day.

Let me know how it goes and what they find out when they do surgery!!

 

Take care,

 

Ro

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Ok. So i was going back and forth to the dr bc i was so tired all the time....unbelievably tired. After many trips my dr ordered an overnight pulse ox and discovered my oxygen dropped into the 80s at night, so i was given oxygen to use at night. That didnt help. So, i have sleep apnea and thought MAYBE  my cpap machine was not working right. I went to that dr and the machine  is fine and my sleep apnea is controlled. I told her about the oxygen  and she asked why it dropped. I told her no one ever tried to figure it out. That i had pneumonia  the previous year really bad and have not been right since. She ordered a ct scan. Thats when we found the nodule....

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On 8/11/2018 at 6:23 PM, BridgetO said:

Hi Lauras. 

I also had a small tumor that "looked like" cancer but didn't light up the PET scan at all. It couldn't be biopsied without removing the whole lobe, so I had a lower right lobectomy by VATs, like LexieCats. The surgery was fairly easy--they took out a bunch of lymph nodes too. My recovery was fairly fast and I'm fine today with no impairment of my breathing, so far as I can tell. I wasn't particularly fatigued before my surgery or after my recovery. Let us know what other questions you have and how we can support you.

Bridget

The closer this surgery gets the more i freak out! Were you in a lot of pain? How long was it before you could return to work or drive? I am concerned about this arterial iv and central iv as well....its all so scary. I am really terrified! I am thinking  i am going to be miserable forever and in horrible pain. Please help!

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On 8/22/2018 at 7:44 PM, Roz said:

Before you know it, it will be Aug 30th and time for your surgery!! Sending you more positive vibes for surgery day.

Let me know how it goes and what they find out when they do surgery!!

 

Take care,

 

Ro

Thank you so much! I am getting terrified!

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The surgery is NOTHING to be terrified about.  I was up and around the same day.  I needed no pain meds stronger than ibuprofen after I was home.  I had a minor complication (air leak under the skin) that was uncomfortable (though not dangerous) that put me back in the hospital for a 3-4 days but if it weren't for that (and that's somewhat rare), it would have been a piece of cake.  Even so, I was out to dinner and a concert with friends the week after coming home and back at work the very next week.  The pain was minor, and manageable.  It helps to use a foam wedge pillow for sleeping.  And I went without a bra (wore a light vest to cover up) for a couple of weeks, then used a sports bra when I needed one.  

Look at it this way--your nodule was caught early and you're fortunate to be able to have surgery to get it out of you.   For those with more advanced cancer, surgery isn't an option. But surgery is the best shot anyone has at completely eliminating the cancer.

You'll be fine.  :)

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10 minutes ago, LexieCat said:

The surgery is NOTHING to be terrified about.  I was up and around the same day.  I needed no pain meds stronger than ibuprofen after I was home.  I had a minor complication (air leak under the skin) that was uncomfortable (though not dangerous) that put me back in the hospital for a 3-4 days but if it weren't for that (and that's somewhat rare), it would have been a piece of cake.  Even so, I was out to dinner and a concert with friends the week after coming home and back at work the very next week.  The pain was minor, and manageable.  It helps to use a foam wedge pillow for sleeping.  And I went without a bra (wore a light vest to cover up) for a couple of weeks, then used a sports bra when I needed one.  

Look at it this way--your nodule was caught early and you're fortunate to be able to have surgery to get it out of you.   For those with more advanced cancer, surgery isn't an option. But surgery is the best shot anyone has at completely eliminating the cancer.

You'll be fine.  :)

So you had your lobe removed? 

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Yup.  And apart from a lot of coughing right after (forgot to mention--they will give you breathing exercises and doing them religiously will really hasten your recovery), I've noticed NO effect on my breathing.  I started taking long walks a couple weeks after my surgery and I have no shortness of breath.  The remaining lung tissue takes over for the missing lobe.  

It's been just over a year since my surgery and the only time I notice anything is if I inhale sharply (yawning or sneezing), when I feel a slight twinge.  But no pain.  And no pain at all from the incisions, which you can barely see.

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4 hours ago, Lauras said:

Thank you so much! I am getting terrified!

Don't worry Laura's... I know lucky will be a bad choice of word but comparatively you are really very lucky having found out so early and getting treated almost at stage 0. Please forget about surgery just think that you will be pronounced cancer free without any further treatment. My husband had libectomy recently and it was nothing short than a piece of cake. 

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Hi Lauras,

 I had my lower right lobe and a bunch of lymph nodes removed by VATS.I was  discharged from the hospital the day after surgery with a chest drain tube in place because my lung was leaking air.  Here are answers to your questions. I was not in a lot of pain. I did have pain in the hospital right after the surgery. I asked for more pain meds, which they gave me and then it was tolerable. I was up and around the hospital floor the day of the surgery. After I got home I had some opiate pain meds (oxycodone, if I recall correctly) which I used while I had the chest tube in place (10 days). With the tube, if I moved wrong, I had a jab of pain. I quickly learned how not to move!  The jabbing pain when it happenedwas only for a minute and mostly I was pretty comfotable. I was up and around immediately and out and about walking around the neighborhood in a couple of days, with the drain tube and bag hidden under a big raincoat. 

I could drive as soon as the tube was out and I was off the opiates.After the tube was out I used tylenol and ibuprofen and it was fine. I'm retired, so didn't have work to return to, but probsbly could have worked in a couple of weeks. I think it's unusual for somebody to have a persistent air leak and go home with a tube. My recovery was fast and I think that if I hadn't had the tube it would have been faster.

You will NOT be miserable forever! You'll have some pain after surgery and they'll give you meds to control it. 

I also recommend the wedge pillow to sleep on. I was told to sleep with my upper body elevated. I tried to use one of those sitting up in bed reading pillows and some other pillows and ended up with a crick in my neck. Got a wedge pillow (12 inch wedge) and was really comfortable sleeping on it. I used it for a couple of months. 

This is scary to you because it's unknown. Hang in there. You'll do fine. 

Bridget O

 

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9 hours ago, BridgetO said:

Hi Lauras,

 I had my lower right lobe and a bunch of lymph nodes removed by VATS.I was  discharged from the hospital the day after surgery with a chest drain tube in place because my lung was leaking air.  Here are answers to your questions. I was not in a lot of pain. I did have pain in the hospital right after the surgery. I asked for more pain meds, which they gave me and then it was tolerable. I was up and around the hospital floor the day of the surgery. After I got home I had some opiate pain meds (oxycodone, if I recall correctly) which I used while I had the chest tube in place (10 days). With the tube, if I moved wrong, I had a jab of pain. I quickly learned how not to move!  The jabbing pain when it happenedwas only for a minute and mostly I was pretty comfotable. I was up and around immediately and out and about walking around the neighborhood in a couple of days, with the drain tube and bag hidden under a big raincoat. 

I could drive as soon as the tube was out and I was off the opiates.After the tube was out I used tylenol and ibuprofen and it was fine. I'm retired, so didn't have work to return to, but probsbly could have worked in a couple of weeks. I think it's unusual for somebody to have a persistent air leak and go home with a tube. My recovery was fast and I think that if I hadn't had the tube it would have been faster.

You will NOT be miserable forever! You'll have some pain after surgery and they'll give you meds to control it. 

I also recommend the wedge pillow to sleep on. I was told to sleep with my upper body elevated. I tried to use one of those sitting up in bed reading pillows and some other pillows and ended up with a crick in my neck. Got a wedge pillow (12 inch wedge) and was really comfortable sleeping on it. I used it for a couple of months. 

This is scary to you because it's unknown. Hang in there. You'll do fine. 

Bridget O

 

I was told  the drain tube would come out later that  day or the next day. Jeez i hope so. Im also not happy about the arterial iv or central iv. We are hoping if they remove the top lobe i will actually breath better bc its full of emphysema and sometimes that kind of hinders the rest of your lung. That is the only place i have it.

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I've heard of people's breathing improving post-lobectomy for that very reason.  What's got you worried about the IVs?  My only issue with IVs is the difficulty they sometimes have finding my veins, but once it's in you don't really notice it.  

ETA: The adjustable bed sounds terrific.  I'd have slept in a recliner, but for the fact that I have cats that would have been all over me if I tried.  The bedroom was safer, lol.

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Just now, LexieCat said:

I've heard of people's breathing improving post-lobectomy for that very reason.  What's got you worried about the IVs?  My only issue with IVs is the difficulty they sometimes have finding my veins, but once it's in you don't really notice it.  

Being in my neck and the other one in my artery in my wrist. 

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