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richinsdakota

New here....need support

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Hi all; new here...been reading the great support posts...helps ...thx to all...

Going for the broncoscopy Mon. 06/28/04...scary as hell, as u probly know before me....sense of dread, fear the worst...only support Ivee found is here... Drs. aint what they used to be, are they...

Anyway; if anyone can help calm my nerves, maybe by relating their initial biopsy/diagnosis experience...might help prepare me for what I fear will be bad news....thx if u can help, and bless u for doing it for me...

richinsdakota

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Rich,

I didn't have a broncoscopy as the nodule wasn't in a place where they could do that, but I know lots of people on here have.

As far as the fear, I think we can all relate to the dread you are feeling.

Just take the steps one at a time and we'll help you walk through it...

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Hi Rich, They weren't able to get to my tumor for a biopsy. I didn't know anything until I woke up from the surgery. Keep in mind that even if it is LC, there are many things the Docs can do to fight it. In July it will be three years since my surgery and so far I'm fine. All who have been through it understand your fear. It's scary stuff. I think the fear is the worst part. And not being able to drive for a few weeks. :D Start writing down your concerns and questions so that when you see the Doc you'll know the plan. It's hard to remember all your questions when you're talking to them. There are a lot of people on this site that will be glad to provide you with whatever info you want. Hang in there and please let us know how you make out.

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Hi Rich,

It is a very scary time, but let's all hope that the news will be that it is not cancer. I had two bronchoscopies...in the first one, I was put under and the second one I was totally awake and involved. It isn't so bad and it is the beginning of knowing one way or the other as to what is exactly going on. Be sure to ask all the questions you have and be sure to tell us what you find out. I will especially be thinking of you on Monday and praying that the determination is more favorable than what you fears are. I hope you have someone going with you.

Margaret

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Eyup. Been there, done that. X-ray then CT scan then bronchoscophy. And your right, it IS a scary trip. But the nice thing about it is that, with a place like this around, you don't have to do it alone.

A couple of things to keep in mind. You don't KNOW it's lung cancer yet. Might turn out to be something else that's not so nasty. That's happened a couple of times in the last few months for some folks who came here absolutely convinced they had LC.

Even if it IS lung cancer (now listen close!). A DX OF LUNG CANCER IS NOT A DEATH SENTENCE! Much will depend on what exactly they find. But there are folks right here who have had the worst possible dx and are still alive and kicking many months and even years longer than their doctors thought they would be.

Sending a prayer your way. Keep us informed, ok?

Dean

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In only an hour or so....many helpful replies....feel a bit less frantic after reading them...thank u all so much for being there for each other. I hope for the best, but in any event, look forward to sharing with you all....hope I can be as caring as u are...thank you

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Have faith in the nurses. My husband was PETRIFIED before his surgery and wasn't shy about telling the nurses (but in a kind way). It was touching how their business demeanor softened and they were so comforting. It makes me teary to think about it. You can ask for medication to take the edge off. It really does help. When my husband spoke up, they gave him something right away to calm his nerves.

There is an anti-anxiety pill called Ativan and it works wonders. My husband relied on it for several weeks until he was able to cope emotionally on his own. It has been our experience that the doctors are more than happy to prescribe it if you ask for it.

Make sure you have a good support person to be with you every step of the way. The fact that you posted here indicates that you are not afraid to ask for help to get through this.

You will get through this, although you may not feel so confident right now. The strength of the human spirit never ceases to amaze me. God really does provide us with the fortitude to cope and yes, even be happy.

God Bless, keep us posted, wishing and praying for the best,

Terry

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Rich,

I think we can all understand your fears having been there ourselves. But, I hope you can take some comfort in seeing the multitudes of us who have come through this all on the other side of diagnostic procedures, surgery, chemo, radiation and whatever and are feeling just fine now.

I did have a bronchscopy, but it was immediately preceding surgery to search for other tumors, so I was under general anesthetic and didn't know what was going on. I can tell you, except for some dried blood in the phlem I coughed up, I had no side effects afterwards--no sore throat or anything.

Good luck,

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Has anyone elected to decline surgery, and seek an alternative treatment, against Drs. advice? I find surgery a very undesirable option, tho I understand the risks of foregoing it. Depends on the diagnosis, I suppose...getting ahead of myself here...but there wont be much time after dx to schedule surgery or option, I get the impression.

Anyway, appreciate anything u might be able to offer on this subject..thx.

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Rich,

My husband had the surgery and it was not a breeze but other than maybe 3 not good weeks he has had no lasting pain or problems from it.

It is my understanding that surgery offers the best chance for cure or remission.

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South Dakota ( your handle is very long) My tumor was high in my right lung , not reachable by bronch, I had a CT guided needle biopsy, and that was hard for them to do. What I am writing about is your comment on surgery. If you are able to have it, it is the best way to cure. Most of us have a lot more tests to make sure it is an option, as pulmonary function studies, bone scans, brain scans etc. Now depending on where your tumor is, at not wrapped around a blood vessel , or attached to your heart etc, you may be able to have VAT or video assisted thorocosopy. With that surgery, if your surgeon has been trained, they only make a small incision, and the recovery can be as little as 3 days. It is not at all like what I had where they break a couple of ribs, spread them, spead chest muscles etc . So before you get the all excited don't be so against it. I know it is hard but ONE STEP AT A TIME. OK? now keep us posted. Donna

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Dear Rick,

I remember the anxiety of not knowing.....actually the knowing was easier. I cried for a few minutes then began looking at my options. They gave me many tests (lung function, heart stress test, PET scan, etc) but okayed me for surgery. It is the best chance for a cure so please don't rule it out if it is an option. You are very uncomfortable for a few days and sore for a few weeks. That is all I can say about the surgery....I have done great ....my problems have all stemed from radiation but I still would not change having it. It increased my odds...and this is an odds game we are playing. We take care of ourselves and do the best we can (I pray alot). but no one knows why some do better than others except that some options "seem" to give better odds than others.

I hope this is all just worry over nothing...but if it isn't ...we are all with you..let us know how you are doing.

Nina

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If it turns out that you have LC, you want to pray that you can have surgery. If it can be taken out you have the best chance of beating it. Many on this board had to go thru Chemo and Rad before they were able to have surgery. I was lucky as I was able to have surgery immediately. I couldn't wait for them to get it out of me. No surgery is pleasant but it is a fact of life. If you have the right attitude and the determination to fight, the surgery isn't horrible. I have a very small scar on my back. One rib was accidentally broken but it's no big deal. I'm not limited in any way and pretty much do what I want to do. Plain old age is slowing me down a bit, but what the hell, I'm still kicking. Alternative medicine along with surgery is okay, but foregoing the surgery would be a tragic mistake. LC is a nasty beast and can not be handled with kid gloves. Don't fear the surgery, fear the disease.

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Rich,

IF you have cancer...it may not be, my friend had a mass in her lungs about the same time I did - hers was sarcodosis. One year on steroids and it should disappear....she's not doing the treatment because the steroids make her SWEAT and she doesn't like it... NOT my life, I pushed for her to do the broncoscopy, she didn't want to do that! Anyhow...

IF you are a candidate for surgery...I think we'd ALL pretty much advice you to do the surgery. YES, there are risks, YES, there is pain....and I understand there are other views called "alternative medicine" but the BIGGEST thing you need to remember is that you are trusting these unseen people with your very LIFE. At least the doctor you meet face-to-face and he has legitimate "statistics" and possible negatives/positives where the alternative view may have legitimate claims but are not monitored and MANY, MANY of the "alternative" companies are fraudulent.

Personally, if I were sure of an alternative medication, I would use it to supplement surgery. To be honest, I was scared to death of surgery but didn't really like the other option...

Take care, good luck!

Becky

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If surgery is an option, you need to strongly consider it.

I was scared out of my mind and had to do the xanax thing for a while, but I was more scared having that thing living inside of me till I could get on the surgery schedule.

Surgery was tough, I felt bad for a few days, got better quickly, and now, a year later, after a recovery from surgery and chemo, I feel really good.

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I just went through the experience of diagnosing but I was one of the fortunate ones who does not have lung cancer. I am currently only being monitored and my mass is getting smaller. It is an inflammation and not life threatening.

My pulmonary doctor was pretty convinced that I did in fact have lung cancer but it doesn't always turn out that way. As a matter of fact I just saw him today for a follow up visit to check my stats and he said had he to do it all over again he would have thought the same based on what he was seeing on the Xray and subsequent CT scan.

Let's hope yours is not ,but if so, this is the place you want to return to for support to get through each day.

I know it's easy for me to say this now, but try not to predict the outcome right now. Stay positive the best you can.

My best to you.

Kate

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Thanx to all for the help, guidance, support, and kind words upon my newbie post here. I already learned a lot from you....

Unfortunately, I have qualified for membership, if u will have me, in the NSCLC group, (diag. of adenocarcinoma), so I will move there for my next post. Hope to keep in contact with you all there, you are great. Cya there....

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I am so sorry that it is the friggin disease. Its an awful rollercoaster ride from hell. I personally don't have the cancer myself. I lost my mom last august to NSCLC and my dad just a few weeks ago to SCLC and just two days ago my sister was dx'd with breast cancer. I got a phone call today that I now need a biopsy for two "spots" on a mamogram I was made to get after my sisters dx.

Be aggressive in your treatment, demand they do everything and anything that can be done to beat the crap out of it. when you get down, and you will, take a day, and regroup with a plan. I am getting through with xanax, lexapro and sleeping pills, but the most help are the people on this board, they have picked my butt up more times than I can count and right now THEY are carrying me forward in the fight. I have personally given up so I am on their shoulders. If it were not for these people and their TRUE concern for me. I would have jumped by now.

get educated about your disease, and get mad at it.

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