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Old 08-20-2005, 07:41 AM   #1
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tivodad HB User
Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

I had a series of tests to determine the cause of abdominal pains which lasted for about 2 months. Those pains have subsided (thankfully), but a contrasting CT scan in July revealed a 7x14mm spot on my liver (right lobe) and a 6mm spot on the base of my right lung (I've never smoked). Both my GI and IM doctors have suggested I wait until December to rescan. I wonder why they want to wait so long. Neither Dr. feels I should be concerned but of course I keep wondering.
Also, in June, 1 month prior to the CT scan I had an ultra-sound which revealed nothing. The ultra-sound report described the liver in terms of length and width and said there were no masses. Would an ultra-sound have picked up the 7x14mm spot or did the spot develop in the month subsequent to the ultra-sound test?
Also, I had another CT scan (no contrasting) a week or so prior to the ultra-sound which also did not indicate a liver spot. This first scan was an unprepped scan to look for gall stones and kidney stones. None were found.
Is it likely the liver spot could have been there all along and not picked up by either the 1st CT scan and the ultra-sound? Or is it more likely the spots appeared in the 1 month period after the ultra-sound and before the last CT scan? So you think I should wait until the end of the year to retest or do something else (what?) now? Thanks all, I'm a little nervous about all of this.

 
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Old 08-20-2005, 09:33 AM   #2
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tyboyz HB User
Re: Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

I am in the same situation. Had tests looking for a reason for my abdominal pain and a contrasted CT scan found a 6mm spot on my liver but could not determine exactly what it was. Previous ultrasound did not find anything. They did find that I have reflux and gallstones and said this was the cause of the pain and that I should not be concerned about the spot on my liver - BUT OF COURSE I AM A NERVOUS WRECK!!!! They had me wait 3 months as well and redo the scan. Found the same spot with no perceived changes. STILL SCARED!!!!

I would be interested in anything you find out!!

 
Old 08-20-2005, 09:35 AM   #3
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Re: Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

It sounds like with all those tests and the fact that your doctors have been very good at checking and consulting with you that you should not be concerned. Cancer can occur at any time in anyone whether they smoke or not. There are even viruses now that cause cancer. Mine is caused my acid indigestion so who woulda thought? So many non-smokers put off tests because they feel as long as they do not smoke they will never get cancer so its found in the later stages. Sad huh?

If you are still concerned get a second opinion to ease your mind. Most insurance companies pay for them now.

Good luck and God bless,
Blue~
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Last edited by MistyBlueEyes; 08-20-2005 at 09:38 AM.

 
Old 08-21-2005, 07:01 PM   #4
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happyelf HB User
Re: Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

TivoDad--(and tyboyz)
Hopefully I can quell your fears just a little...sorry if htis is long--don't mean to bore you!! I've just been where you are it when it comes from left field-and you hear "spot" it scares the hell out of you. I know abt the liver--not so much abt the lungs. Barb (prior post) gave you great info on that.
The radiologist usually can tell if spots are suspicious or not. They read this stuff day in & day out-that's their job. If you feel the need, by all means ask for a 2nd opin.(The hopsital at which I have my CT's done have two radiologists read all scans.) The radiologist reads scan, then recommends the rescan time based on that facility's standard--some use 3 mos, some use 6 for rescan/check for any change in size. This "spot" could be a couple of things-2 very(most)common usually have no treatment except to recheck 3-6 mos: 1) hemangioma--a cluster of blood vessels grouped together anywhere in or on the liver-can be referred to as a mass, spot or nodule on the report...In rare cases if it gets large(tennis ball size)they may remove it w/no complications and the prognosis is great. 2)fatty tumor,cyst or nodule...very common also-again no treatment but the rescan...(or rarely- removal if it gets really large) Diet and exercise can reverse this w/in a matter of months. ("fatty liver" is when your liver has fat around it due to poor diet and/or you're a little overweight)These are non-life threatening and not cancer--they just sound like it. Most ppl that have them don't know it until they are checked for something else-usually abdominal pain--they show up on the U/S or CT scan of the abdomen. I have only had CT's w/contrast-I think they pick up everything better-so it's very possible the spots were there during your first ct. Did you have your CT and U/S done at the same facility? If so, the radiologists take all that into account and should have your prior test results.

Now the waiting begins-if it were suspect of cancer-they'd probably want to rescan sooner(usually w/MRI) and be talking biopsy. Did either one of you guys have Liver Function Test (blood work) done? Did they give you any AST or ALT info?
Hopefully this helps you guys a little. I know what it's like-you get this info-then THEY want to wait-and you're thinking, "Wait 3 mos?? It's not YOUR liver!!" They're not the ones losing sleep over it. Stress will make things worse in matters of the liver--try to relax... I have both on my liver-fatty tumor and hemangioma...am in the middle of getting rescanned for two new "lesions" on the other lobe (That's another *nice and patient friendly* word they use-haha) so I'm w/you. My fatty tumor was found by U/S then confirmed by CT--hemangioma was found w/CT scan but I was told it had probably been there for a while--just not picked up. So-it does happen.
Tyboys--that's good there was no change when you had your 3 mos rescan...they'll do it again and then maybe space it out to 6 mos or a year.

Hang in there--let me know abt your ALT and AST if you had them done.
Gina

Last edited by happyelf; 08-21-2005 at 07:12 PM. Reason: add'l info/sp

 
Old 08-22-2005, 08:07 PM   #5
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MistyBlueEyes HB User
Re: Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

How are you both doing?
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Old 08-22-2005, 08:13 PM   #6
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tyboyz HB User
Re: Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

That is really great info. Thanks so much!!!

In my case my blood tests show my liver numbers to be normal. My "lesion" is 6mm in size but the radiologist states in the report that it is too small to categorize with a ct. My gastro doctor says it is nothing to worry about since it hasn't changed in 3-4 months. I read the report myself and they is really no indication that it is cancer but it also does not give any answer to what it might be. For the time being I am going to relax and revisit with him in a few months to see if there is a next step.

By the way thanks for starting this thread. It has helped me.

 
Old 08-22-2005, 08:26 PM   #7
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happyelf HB User
Re: Liver/Lung Spots - should I be concerned?

You're welcome. Hope it wasn't too boring or repetetive. Normal liver #'s--That's good news...they really do tell the tale. Sounds like your Gastro is on the ball and you're happy with his plan of attack. That's comforting-at least it's not cancer suspect-even tho they don't know what it is. So now you have to trust them.
Hopefully tivodad has the same good results you rec'd.

 
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