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Follow up CT and worried


Julia g

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Hello everyone, 

I previously posted about my SPN that was 9mm in right middle lobe and I had met with Pulmonologist for surveilence. I just had my 3 month CT followup and my nodule has grown to 10mm and I have an additional nodule in the right lower lobe that is 9mm not previously seen. Radiologist also noted a possible nodule on my liver. I don't see my pulmonologist until June 15. 

I am worried and I know this is a very calming group. Please give me your feedback and thoughts.

Lexie I know you prefer to not read your CT reports but I am too anxious to wait for my appts :) 

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Julia,

I used to also read my scan reports until the doctor wound up laughing at me because I thought it was a terrible report and it turned out that I was NED and Stable.  That taught me a lesson, but everybody is different and Lexie would never expect you to explain yourself, neither would I.  Okay, the Radiologist (notice I did not say Pulmonologist or Oncologist or other Doctor) did the preliminary reading and sees nodules.  I'm not really sure if 9mm to 10mm is significant or not.  A mm is a small thing to measure.  And there seems to be another one (9mm) and a "possible" nodule on your liver.  These could all be very important or coinciding instances.  You really need the doctor's opinion and interpretation of the data to understand exactly what it means and what steps they recommend.  

I used to be the "king of catastrophe".  I mean give me some data and I had myself being lowered by pall bearers within five minutes.  One thing I learned here, with this Lungevity Family of mine is to take it easy.  Don't step on the catastrophe accelerator, like I used to do.  Now I wait to hear from my doctor and understand what the findings really mean to me, in my situation and my case.

Julia, please try to do the same.  Yes, it could be something, but it could also be worth more "watching", you'll know about that when you hear from the doctor.  Stay calm, even if it is cancerous you've been around here long enough to know that there are many treatments available and we have a broad base of experience to draw from.  Right now you only have a suspicion of cancer...let's wait for the doctor's interpretation as well as any other determinative tests he/she wants to perform.  Then you will know if you need to be concerned, what it is specifically and the plan to knock it out.  

Know that we'll all be standing close by as you go through this.  You won't be alone.

Lou

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Hello there-

As usual, Lou has given some great guidance.  For me I invented a 24 hour rule— meaning if there was a critical finding, the phone would be ringing off the hook.  Lung nodules can come and go.  The liver is a total mystery to me- I’ve had all sorts of “findings” with follow up ultrasounds that were not serious.  
 

Also it’s important to know, Physicians often do not agree with the radiologists interpretation- that was news to me as well.  
 

I know next week feels like it’s a long way to go, take it one day at a time.  You can do this. 
Michelle

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The type of imaging depends on what they are looking for. Your pulmonologist will decide what kind of imaging is necessary to see what needs to be seen.

Nodules don't actually tend to come and go, but their images do. I have some nodules (I have several, unchanged for many years) that appear on some scans and not on others. I asked my oncologist, and he told me that because the CT scan gathers images in small "slices," the angle of the image can sometimes miss one. For the same reason, I'm not sure a 1 mm difference in size is a big deal--that could be accounted for by the CT itself.

So everyone's right--don't get ahead of yourself. Your doc will decide what kind of further testing/followup is necessary. Depending on size/location it may or may not be possible to biopsy the nodule. You might wind up following the nodule via imaging for a while. Or a PET-CT might show whether any of the nodules show hyperactivity suggestive of cancer. 

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