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Help me to help a friend


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I have a friend who has coughed for three years. Today she told me that off and on she has coughed blood. I was shocked. She is afraid of Drs and told me she is in constant pain. She has driven to emergency rooms several times and turned back. I sent her to this site, thinking it would help her to see some of the success stories and that people do live with Lc. She said it gave her less hope. I don't know what to tell her.

My father had Lc and when he was diagnosed it was a shock, and so he didn't even think he had lc so he wasn't all that stressed when he went into the dr.

Afterwards, yes, waiting for results etc. She also has seen others die from this horrible disease, and was my friend as I

went through this with my dad. She knows too much, I guess. I wondered if there were people on here who suspected they had lc and how they got the courage to go to the Dr or hospital. She does suffer from panic attacks and I know she is truly frightened of medical and dental procedures. More so than most, Iguess. I told her to read posts by "Snowflake" but that didn't seem to help. She is sure nothing can be done and nothing that she wants done. But as a friend, I feel I must try to help her.

I would go with her, but she and I no longer live in the same state. She is over 1,000 miles away. Maybe I should call another of her friends who lives there? Any help would be appreciated.

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Dear Friend of Guest,

When I was first diagnosed and waiting for surgery, I sent out an email to a large distribution list at work (I have a lot of friends and have worked in many different areas of the same company). I received a reply back from a new friend, someone who had just been hired in as a full-time employee from a temporary position - she had worked with me when she was a contractor. She told me that she needed to talk to me and I replied back that I was in a rush to tie up loose ends prior to taking an unknown period of time off from work. A reply to my reply was "No, it's important, I NEED to talk to you"...and then she called me.

The company I work for required pre-employment screening. In my email I had described the little "cloud" that lead to where I was, awaiting surgery...well, when she had her chest x-ray for work, they had seen something in HER chest, a cloudy area and she was too scared to go to her doctor.

My friend has two daughters and is a single mother...and I felt it extremely important that she get it checked out. She finally went to her doctor and he scared the hell out of her...she didn't like the doctor and didn't want to go to the specialist he suggested. I told her about the thoracic surgeon I had consulted with and she told me if she couldn't get in to see him, she wouldn't go. She DID get an appointment with him...and canceled it.

My friend told me that she was too scared to find out she had cancer and didn't want to think about it - this the day she visited me in the hospital after my surgery... She really is a nice girl, so I kept pushing her to find out, after all, it COULD be "nothing" and wouldn't that be better than KNOWING there was something and thinking the worst? Besides, I told her if it WAS cancer, it would just keep growing while she kept avoiding it...and my mother reinforced that, she happened to be visiting that day, too.

So I kept after her, even while doped up at home and she PROMISED me the day she came to have lunch with me that she would go for her next appointment, NO MATTER WHAT...and she did.

My friend has sarcodosis - she had to have a biopsy and didn't want to do that, either. It's a lung infection that with treatment WILL go away. She is finishing up her year on steroids and doing great. My leverage? She had her first baby when she was 14, the second when she was 16. Her mother kicked her out with the second baby and told her she'd never amount to anything... Gee, she made it through high school, ON TIME and is working on her BS. She owns her own house, she's raising two daughters, has a decent job, benefits, etc. WHY be scared of a doctor? Believe me, I HATE needles, but HAD to do this, no choice. I have far too much to live for to give up without a helluva fight!

I urge you to head to the doctor and see what it is that ails you. You can't fight it if you don't know what you're facing. Sure, we've ALL wanted to just crawl back under the covers and wake up from this nightmare, but that is NO WAY to go. Life is a daily battle and to be honest, it sure beats the alternative!

PLEASE, go see a doctor. Whatever it is will NOT get better without treatment, and if it IS LC, you need to get going on the war. Where cancer is concerned, what you don't know can kill you. Other diseases, pnuemonia and influenza for example, can kill you without intervention. Call the doctor, find out what is going on. Take a deep breath, take three or four, brace yourself and face it head on. Hiding from it doesn't make it go away and gives the Unknown the power to keep you shaking in fear, paralyzed to inaction and throw you far into depression. Get the knowledge, beat down the beast!


aka Snowflake

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