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Claudia

Diagnosis by surprise

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Hi Everyone! I was scheduled for shoulder replacement surgery last February and had to do a pre-op chest x-ray. It showed a 3 cm mass in my left lung. I had no symptoms and was totally shocked by this diagnosis. I am wondering If there are many others who found out about their LC while looking for something else or by surprise. Have a beautiful day. 😀

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My husband was recently diagnosed with stage IIIA lung cancer by surprise.  He went to the ER for a bout of diverticulitous they performed a CT scan of his abdomin and they caught part of his lung on the scan.  He was then sent for a CT scan of the chest which then lead to a PET scan and a diagnosis of lung cancer.  He has a 1.1 CM nodule in his left lung but the cancer had spread to his lymph nodes within his chest before the cancer was caught.    All along every doctor told us not to worry that it was very unlikely it would be lung cancer as my husband is a 41 year old never smoker and has no known exposure to chemicals.  Not sure what stage your lung cancer is but I am wishing you much luck in this journey.  

I am new to this board but everyone here is very kind.

Denise

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Hi Claudia,

There are quite a few of us with lung cancers found while being scanned or xrayed for something else. I was having a routine scan to watch for possible metastases from an unrelated cancer and instead they found a nodule that turned out to be a primary lung cancer. Actually, we're fortunate. The earlier lung cancer is found, the easier it is to treat.  Typicallyit  has no symptoms until it's advanced, so an early LC diagnosis is usually found "by surprise" (or when long time smokers are having screening CTs.)  

Bridget O

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I took my Mom to the ER last November. We thought she hasd a terrible case of the flu and was dehydrated. They got her right in and things started to happen pretty quickly. Not long after they drew blood the first time, The E R doctor told me she was either having or had just had a heart attack. And he also said her kidneys were shutting down. Talk about a shock! I said “Wait, what happened to the flu?”. I know, Dumb thing to say, right?  Little did I know what was coming. They did a chest X-ray and within a short time after that took her for a chest CT scan. I thought that was odd but was still focused on the heart attack & kidneys. Again the ER doctor appeared and told me there was a mass in my mom’s lung and what looked like lymph node involvement. He went on to say that it could be very possible that she has lung cancer. I thought I was going to either pass out or throw up. Apparently the doctor must have read my mind because he asked me very nicely if I didn’t think I should sit down. Oh yeah, good idea! After a week she was released from the hospital. She then had to recover from the heart attack before they could do the needed biopsy. Finally in March they did the lung biopsy and on March 28th, she & I saw the Oncologist who told us she did in fact have stage 4 small cell lung cancer. Another huge shock. I had had 4 months to convince myself that she didn’t have lung cancer. No such luck. But she is doing well and I’m thankful for everyday she’s still here. 

On a side note, I think everyone on this forum is so brave and I am in awe of your never ending determination. The courage it takes to deal with cancer is shown here by everyone who posts. And you all give me the strength I need to have to continue the journey with my Mom. And for that, I thank you.

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I had an xray for pneumonia.  Radiologist saw something...so an MRI.  I started with stage 1 non small cell lung cancer....3 months later...surgery and staged as IIIa 3cm + and lymph nodes.  I have had chemo, radiation.  I have had no evidence of disease for a year.

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Claudia,

I'll add my name to the "surprised" list of diagnosis.  I had a battle with a kidney stone and they did an abdominal CT Scan and a nodule in my right lung was picked up by the radiologist and I wound up at a pulmonologist's office.  He did a PET which was 2.3 so inconclusive and then they did an open-thoracic biopsy (essentially the lung surgery) where they confirmed a diagnosis of NSCLC squamos and removed my lower lobe.  What a crazy ride it was, but to have been diagnosed at Stage 1a was a blessing that so many others aren't afforded.

Lou

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Hi Claudia.  The, “there is a spot on your lung” is scary and shocking.  Mine was found peripherally on an abdominal scan for something else.  We watched it for a year with no change.  I opted to have it removed just in case.  It turned out to be Stage 1A Adenocarcinoma NSCLC.  I had an upper right lobe lobectomy.  You mentioned finding the 3cm mass by accident.  Did you have any additional testing for a diagnosis?   

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I had my annual check-up and told my PCP that I had pulled a muscle in my mid-back.  She ordered an x-ray and then a CT....bronchoscopy....PET.  Diagnosed with Stage 1B.  Had absolutely no symptoms.

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Hi Curt,

Yes I had a X rays, CT scan, Pet Scan, Brain MRI and a biopsy. I was finally staged with stage IV Squamous Cell with a 3 cm mass in the lingular part of my left lung as well as swollen lymph nodes in my left groin. My Oncologist said that the mets to the groin was unusual with no other lymph nodes affected. I was very lucky to have no mets to the brain. After 4 months of Carbo/Abraxine/Keytruda the latest pet scan showed nothing in the lymph nodes and a 1.3 cm "nodule" left in the left lung. I am now on Keytruda only every 3 weeks but staring down shoulder replacement surgery a week from Friday.  I just hope I wake up from the general anesthesia. LOL

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That is amazing progress Claudia.  I was really afraid of going under anesthesia as well.  They know what they are doing and are hyper cautious about who they will put under and who they won’t.  You’ll do great.  Is the shoulder replacement related to the cancer?   

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4 hours ago, Curt said:

That is amazing progress Claudia.  I was really afraid of going under anesthesia as well.  They know what they are doing and are hyper cautious about who they will put under and who they won’t.  You’ll do great.  Is the shoulder replacement related to the cancer?   

Curt,

I guess it depends on how you look at it. I was scheduled for the surgery and the pre-op x-ray showed a mass in my left lung. That started the whole cancer thing. I consider it my painful but life saving shoulder. I am looking forward to being out of pain but a little nervous. I guess that would be true if I had LC or not. Thanks for asking.

Claudia

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Joint replacement surgery isn’t easy  the results are amazing for anyone I know who’s had it.

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Hi everyone,

You all seem to have had a lobectomy and I really would like to know how you felt after the operation and how long it took to recouperate your normal energy levels?

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