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Plural effusion


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Forgive me if I have the topic wrong. Regardless, finally got to read my CAT scan results. Not to promising.

My question is the Dr who interpreted the scan indicated that the effusion likely NOT caused by the radiation but most likely malignant.  So, I know some of you have been thru this. Is the only option Chemo? Can the fluid just be removed?

Heading for a brain scan and tomorrow see my onc.  Set up a potential second opinion at UW for Dec 7th.  Not cheap! Will see if Kaiser will cover.....not going to hold my feeble breath.....

Thanks in advance



PS.....Thanks Tom

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Hey Tom - 

I'm not a doctor and don't know anything about your history, but I *can* tell you that the docs pretty much always believe that pleural effusion will be malignant.  My oncologist, who is otherwise wonderful, assumed that my large pleural effusion was malignant and had the fluid drawn off (in part) so they could use it for biomarker testing.   Oops!  NO cancer cells in the fluid.  So, we lost a week or two finding that out and then scheduling and getting results from biopsy.  So, while it is often malignant, I am proof that it's not always.   

Second - the fluid usually comes back once removed, but chemo tends to clear it up.  I think between drawing it off initially plus my first round of triplet chemo, it was pretty much gone.  



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Hey Buddy,

I think Susan summed it up pretty well.  When I had pleural effusion, it was hit with one big round of the triplet, was caught early on scans so didn’t need to be drained but I did cough up an alarming amount of clear fluid.  Notice that this entire saga is written in the past tense- that was two years ago.   So I know you well enough at this point to order you away from Dr Google.  Hoping the doc has a good cannon blast coming your way real soon to knock the buggers out. 

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