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Cancer: Lung Message Board
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Old 03-12-2009, 12:46 PM   #1
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sawbuck44 HB Usersawbuck44 HB Usersawbuck44 HB User
Left Lung entirely removed

My brother-in-law has lung cancer. He lives in another state. I am going to give you what I know which isn't a lot. I still find it surprising that he is this far into this without knowing type, stage, or life expectancy.

A few months ago, he had pnemonia. Went to the doctor who put him on antibiotics. They did not work so they gave him another round of stronger ones. He began coughing up blood so they did a chest xray. Saw a shadow on the left lung that appeared rather large. Sent him for a ct scan where it showed there was a tumor about 5 cm(?). Then got a biopsy through his nose or mouth (see I'm not kidding when I say I don't know everything). That test was inconclusive. My sister told me they had gone in too far and went to a 'black hole.' At some point, they gave him steroids to help with the cough(?).

Then he had a PET scan which was also inconclusive. They said that the tumour was too close to the chest wall. So next was a needle biopsy. It was cancer (no one said what kind and I don't know why my sis or bil didn't ask). After the needle biopsy he coughed up more blood and coughed all the time. He did go back into the hospital and they took a chest xray and said it was ok.

He saw a surgeon who said that they hoped to take out a portion of the left lung, but it was possible that they'd have to remove the whole left lung. They'd, of course, know when they got in there. The next day he was scheduled for surgery! He was supposed to go in at 6:30am and the night before they called and said to come in at 5:30am. They said he'd be in hospital for five days and home for at least a month.

Surgery was to take two hours. It took 3 hours. They removed the entire left lung, eight lymph nodes, part of the lining of the chest wall, and part of his aorta. Oh, and they found an infection in the tumor and when I heard that I couldn't figure out how that could happen. The infection was a result of the needle biopsy.

So he had the surgery on 3/11/09 at 7:30am. The doctors have mentioned that he may go home tomorrow. I'm thinking they don't want him to get an infection while being at the hospital. He said he was feeling better - hope it's not just the meds talking. He had a temp of 101 last night, and he has eaten liquids (jello).

Still no word on type of cancer, stage, or what to expect as far as time. I know that everyone is different and even if you do know all that, you can still beat the odds. From my research though, it looks like it is NSCLC and it is stage 3b.

I will keep you all updated.

He was a heavy smoker for over 35 years and quit two years ago. He has also been around car fumes for his whole life as he is a mechanic and races his own dragster. Not sure if that adds to him getting lung cancer. He was also diagnosed during this time with COPD and emphysema.
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Last edited by sawbuck44; 03-12-2009 at 01:01 PM.

 
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