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Weekend Wisdom: Scanxiety


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I don’t know how anyone else deals with this, but I am now a month away from having my next CT scan to see if my nodule has change at all! I have had 4 CT’s, a Pet scan and broncoscopy, the scanxiety is already building, there is no way to avoid it. My savings grace is that the day I have the CT scan, it will be read immediately and be told the results within an hour! The waiting for results is beyond the worst, truly finding out you have a nodule which could be cancer has been a life changing experience, just another tough thing to deal with!

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No cure for scanxiety.  I have tried almost everything!   The best I can come up with is a planned spa week.  I get a pedi, message & acupuncture treatment that week.

 I bribed the scheduler with a Starbucks gift card to have my scan the day before the appointment so minimal waiting and then I book a trip to somewhere post scan so I have something to look forward to.  Even if there are clinical changes, there isn’t going to be an immediate change to the treatment plan, why not have some post scan fun?  

I’ve tried the anxiety meds- I only get them for the brain MRIs because I don’t like to be that sleepy.  
It’s been over a year for me and I’m hoping at some point the scan process gets a little easier.  Definitely open to suggestions!!

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I try to stay busy. For this last scan, I cleaned out our pantry and linen closets over the weekend leading up to my scan. Sometimes I cook. I just try to find something to distract me as much as possible. If you're wondering, yes, I alphabetized my spices. 😁

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9 minutes ago, Rower Michelle said:

Hurray Paula!  Now you can kick back and enjoy Thanksgiving!!!  Such wonderful news!!!!!!

Thanks Michelle, I’m so relieved and excited to just forget test for a while. 😁

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Scanxiety not as bad as it used to be. I had regular scans for quite a few years because of a prior non-lung cancer that was stage 3. At first I was sure every time that "this was the one" that was going to show recurrence or metastasis.But after a string of NEDs, it got easier and I began to see a good chance of long term survival (long= beyond the next scan, at least). But in 2016 (5 years out) the CT showed a nodule that turned out to be not a metastasis from the prior cancer, but a primary lung cancer. I 'm grateful for the scan that allowed my NSCLC to be found very early.  Now I'm into yearly scans for lung cancer surveillance. My next one is November 30. I admit I'm getting a bit nervous.

It's interesting though. I had a non-cancer related health concern and had to wait about a month to see my primary doctor. During that time I was focused on the other issue. I saw my primary on Monday and was reassured that the other concern is really a non-issue at this time. So now my mind's off that one and I'm feeling more anxiety about my upcoming scan. Funny how our minds work! 

I think something that's helped me deal with all of my cancer issues (3 primaries) is finding all this (cancer, treatment, mental reactions) really interesting. Kind of like finding myself  in a foreign country, a dangerous one I really didn't want to go to ad that I have no return ticket from.  But here I am in Cancerland, working to learn the language and understand the culture and doing my best to survive here. 

Bridget O

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