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djhartm

Like others, new & scared

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Hello everyone, I had an MRI done yesterday on liver as part of ongoing hemochromatosis diagnosis.

My doctor phoned me and said they discovered a mass ~3cm on the lower part of my left lung and ordered a CT scan, which I am getting tomorrow. 

Having just lost a friend to cancer, I am very scared. I'm an otherwise healthy 51 y/o non-smoking male.

The doctor said it could be an infection (I got sick traveling abroad recently - could not get tested for Covid-19), an artifact from an old infection, or cancer. 

I had a clean chest x-ray in 2017 when I had a persistent dry cough, which I have now again.

I'm scared because 3cm seems rather large. He said the MRI imaging was very poor, so it was difficult to assess at this point, but they wanted to look at it ASAP.

Trying not to panic. :(

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Hello djhartm,

Welcome to our forum.  The first thing you'll hear from our Lungevity Family here is to wait until you get a solid diagnosis before you let your thoughts get away from you.  The second thing is to NOT go on Google to see what it knows.  Data for LC is changing all the time as treatments and outcomes are improving and published data is averaged over a 5-year period so it does not reflect the most recent data on positive outcomes.

Now, let's talk about that 3cm.  2.54cm=1inch so you are speaking about a relatively small growth, and yes it could be a nodule or any number of things including a tumor.  But, until you have other tests (biopsy, PET scan, etc.) you won't really know what this is until the tests are done and then you can learn if treatment is necessary or not.  I do understand your fear; my Mom and Dad both passed from cancer and it seems to run in my family.  When I did learn of my diagnosis (Mar 2019) I was convinced that I'd be dead by the end of the year.  In my case I had surgery and recovered well and am NED (No Evidence of Disease).  So there is proof from me and others here that even with a positive diagnosis of LC there is more hope than any time in history, especially when it is detected early.

So, please try and take it easy.  You need to work with your doctor on next steps and be ready for more than one test (biopsy, PET Scans, CT Scans, etc.).  Also, feel free to ask any questions you have here and more than one of our members will have firsthand experience to help answer it for you.

And finally, just don't panic...you are a long way from your worst fear.

Lou

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Thank you so much for your response Lou, and I am happy you are NED!

I'm trying to stay positive, but am just dreading what the CT scan will reveal.

My friend had stage IV melanoma that spread to his entire body and he passed just a few weeks ago, so I am very scared.

It's ironic how your life can pivot in an instant.

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djhartm

It's been a while and I'm wondering if you heard anymore on your diagnosis.  I am assuming that perhaps Covid19 has caused some delay.  Let us know what you can and we'll be here.

Lou

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Hi Lou. I've been meaning to post an update, so thanks for reaching out.

Last Friday I had a CT scan.

Waiting for the result was difficult to say the least.

Around 5PM my doctors called and said what they found was a 6mm nodule and ground glass opacity consistent with infection damage. I had gotten sick while in Ireland in the beginning of March, and thought I may have contracted Covid-19. I tried to get tested but was denied. 7-10 days after, they discovered the mass while performing an unrelated MRI on my liver. Given my symptoms (dry cough, sniffles, sore throat, followed by fever/chills/body aches, then complete loss of taste/smell for almost a week), they are saying I likely had Covid-19 and the lung damage was consistent with what they are seeing.

So.... huge relief for me. It was a scary, cathartic experience that changed the way I look at things, and made me much more grateful for all that I have.

I pray things continue to go well for you and thank you again for the follow-up!

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