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Six month scan


Scruboak

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CT scan is clear six month after lobectomy! Yay!  However, It picked up a thyroid nodule so I had ultrasound on that recently. Lots of nodules there - one is “suspicious” for malignancy and the others are only slightly suspicious, probably benign.  I went back to the PET scan I had in March and there is definitely some focal activity there. Since the nodule is only 7 mm It is recommended to have a repeat ultrasound in 6-12 months. How many of you have had PET activity in the thyroid discovered incidentally? I’ve been assuring myself often that thyroid cancer isn’t near as serious as lung cancer but it still niggles. 

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One of my latest radiology reports after a CT scans (not PT scan)  had this nugget in it.

"A mass in the superior mediastinum which is centrally necrotic and contiguous with the inferior aspect of the left lobe of the thyroid measures 3.0 x 2.2 cm on the current examination compared to 3.1 x 2.7 cm on the prior examination. The change suggests this is probably a metastasis."

The previous reports indicated a sub 3 cm node o both sides but my oncologist was not concerned because he described them as mushy (non solid). I don't know how the radiologist come to that conclusion since the node actually decreased in size. I since saw a thyroid specialist who ordered a sonar test, a blood test and  a CT/Uptick test and asked me not to take my one a day that contains iodine and eliminate iodine salt from my diet . The results of the tests were surprisingly within the normal range and my TSH score went from red (0.056) to normal (0.576). So maybe quitting iodine salt had an effect.  Also the 6 hour radioactive iodine uptake was 7% and the 24 hour radioactive iodine uptake was 19.9%. The normal uptake at 4 - 6 hours is 5 - 8% and the normal 24 hour uptake is 15 - 30%.

The thyroid specialist also described the solid node as 2.5cm which is smaller. The decision is made to perform a biopsy on the 2nd of February and so far  the process took 2 and 1/2 months. You would think a biopsy should have been ordered immediately after the radiology report but maybe they had to follow procedures. Of note also the thyroid specialist said that she likes to do biopsy before surgery so I don't know if she thinks the node is cancerous or she plans to remove it regardless.  

The   outcome as I see it is that 1)  the node is cancerous with secondary cancer,  2) The original cancer had spread leading to higher staging ( I was staged as 3), 3) the node is not cancerous and is removed by surgery or 4) none of the above. Stay tuned.

Sorry for all the details because without them thyroid talk does not make sense.

 

 

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Thank you, Michelle. I just need to keep this in perspective. Earlier this week I went snowshoeing and was almost unable to get myself back home (but, I did make it). It was the same route I took shortly after the lobectomy and, you know I think I had some sort of trauma reaction. I had to fight the negative thoughts of how much I’ve changed, how “wounded” I am now. It was nuts. I got a clean bill of health after my six month scan and now I’m looking for something to justify my fear of recurrence.

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Ah, yes. The all too common trauma reaction from doing familiar things or going places. To this day, I can not/will not drive by the hospital where I was diagnosed in September, 2018.  Same thing happened when I popped into a TJ Maxx.  Sometimes it means taking the long way around town.  All we want to do is feel “normal” again.  You will get there & when something unexpectedly unnerves you try & switch gears.  The feeling will pass and the next day will be better.   Hang in there. We all know what you are talking about and it’s normal.  

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Scruboak,

I get some of those feelings even today.  As a musician and a guy who likes to workout I have times when I just feel winded and my mind races to a lot of unpleasant images.  In my case I stop what I'm doing, get a glass of water and remind myself that even without lung cancer I'm not 20 anymore...that usually gets me back and centered.  Michelle has her methods and you'll find yours.  My body is different, but it works fine for all that I do and I'm grateful for it.  You'll find your way also.  Hang tight buddy.

Lou

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