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Is it my turn? Update


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I’m not new to this group having been on here in 2019 & 2020 while dealing with my mom’s lung cancer diagnosis and treatment. The information and support I received from the members were invaluable. But I’ve returned because of the concerning results I received from a recent CT scan done because I’ve been a smoker for many years and have a cough that I can’t seem to get rid of. I have a 2.6 cm mixed ground glass and solid nodule in my upper right lung. Report says ACR category 4A and that a short 3 month follow up CT is recommended. I guess when it’s not their lung, 3 month is a “short” time. But I digress. Message I received from my primary care doctor was to have the CT scan redone in January and that we will discuss the results at my appointment in 1/28/24. Ugh. Seems like a long time to wait for what I’m pretty sure will not be good news. I hate to think that way but having lost both my mom and dad to lung cancer, I can’t help but think “is it my turn?”. 

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If it were me I’d go to an oncologist or pulmonologist and  have it followed up now.  This waiting May work for the observers but not the patients. Good luck

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Hi Blossomsmom.  I would immediately make an appt. with an oncologist. But if you can't get in soon, try for a pulmonologist. As you may know, one doctor can sometimes get you in to another specialist a lot faster than you just trying yourself. With your lung cancer experience with both parents,  your smoking history, I can't believe your Primary wants you to wait 3 more months! (Personally, while getting this all set up I'd also be looking for a new PCP). I already had an oncologist when I was diagnosed with lung cancer as I'd already had breast cancer twice and thyroid cancer. I also already had a pulmonologist because I had been diagnosed with COPD (from 30 years smoking) and also asthma. My family history was that my father and his father both died of lung cancer. I was very lucky to have good medical care and am considered NED at this time from all cancers. I wish you well and please do be proactive and get a specialist to see you and check up on that nodule. Please let us know what you find out! We all care! Best wishes, Momma Om

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Blossomsmom,

Good to hear from you again but sad you might need to join us in survivor mode.

One of the upsides of having a pay-for-service health system is direct access to specialty physicians. Exercise that right and see a pulmonologist, medical oncologist, or radiation oncologist and make that appointment without regard to your GP's timeline.

But, beware the wormhole of ground glass nodules. I still have them reported nearing 20 years of life after lung cancer diagnosis. The best advice I can give is to find a physician who wants to do frequent scanning to look for nodule changes. In fact, tell them this is what you want. After all, you are paying for service.

Stay the course.

Tom

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I agree with those who advise against waiting. 2.6 centimeters is not huge, but it's not a tiny nodule either.  I had a 3 month "wait and see" but my nodule was under 1 cm at that time. I think asking for an opinion from a pulmonologist is a good idea.

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Thank you all for your replies, I appreciate each one. I’ve gone online and requested an appointment with an Oncologist that saw my daughter last year when they thought she had lymphoma (she didn’t thank god). I liked this Doctor and felt comfortable with her. So, we’ll see how soon I can get in to see her. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Pet scan done this morning. Boy I never fully appreciated “scanziety” before this week! I’m relieved it’s over but anxious about the results which should be available online to me on Tuesday. Meeting in person with my PCP on Monday 11/27 to go over results and see what’s next. Could’ve done a video appointment the day before Thanksgiving but my daughter will be here & I’m not ready to share this with her yet. So now we wait and try to be optimistic. I find that easier to do in the light of day than in the dark of night which I’m guessing is pretty normal at this stage.

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  • Blossomsmom changed the title to Is it my turn? Update

Those dark moments of the night once made me invest in a night light. (No kidding.) 

Glad you're going to have a conversation with your PCP. Just know that s/he probably doesn't have the specialized knowledge you need at this point. 

Lung cancer is exploding in terms of new research and treatments; you really want a lung cancer specialist to see all the tests you've had and talk about the next step(s). Perhaps your PCP could connect you to one? 

Here's hoping you have a wonderful visit with your daughter this Thanksgiving.

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Thank you Karen. I know my PCP will just be the starting point. Im very comfortable with her and I know she will help me gently ease my husband into the idea that I may have cancer. I will make the call to the oncologist when we get home from our appointment with her as I agree that I need a cancer specialist to review my CT scan and Pet Scan and tell me what’s next.

Thank you again for your response and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
 

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Hey Blossom. You probably do not remember me but I remember you.

So sorry you have to go thru this. Your posts bring back so many memories of how I felt at the beginning.

Hope for the best. If I remember correctly you advocated for your mother. Remember that in the end you are your own best advocate. Having done caretaking for my brother and then going thru it myself, I can attest that the patient side is a totally different experience.

Good luck. I shall be watching and thinking of you.

Tom

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Hi Tom. I do remember you. I hope all is well for you. Yes, I was my mom’s advocate, atleast as much as she would allow. She was a fiercely independent lady which was a curse and a blessing. LOL. As I’m starting this diagnostic journey I realize how little I actually knew about how she felt when she was at this stage. I’m meeting with a Thoracic surgeon tomorrow to see what she thinks. I’m pretty sure she’ll want to see my next CT scan (in January) before going forward. But I’m anxious to hear what she says the next steps may be if the CT scan shows any changes. I’m sure I’ll be back here with a million questions. I feel like everyone here is my best resource and I appreciate that more than I can say.

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