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Uncle was just "Diagnosed"

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Old 03-17-2009, 05:45 PM   #1
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rp1965 HB User
Uncle was just "Diagnosed"

I was here before regarding my wife's aunt who was diagnosed with lung cancer and subsequently passed from the disease. We miss her much. Now, my aunt says her husband was diagnosed but I am confused by how he was "diagnosed" by the physician. He had had a lung nodule that was seen on a scan 2 years ago, the physician said they would keep an eye on it but from what my aunt says, they never went back for subsequent scans. a few days ago, he was x-rayed and the physician noticed the spot had grown and now appeared in both lungs. He said he was not overly concerned but ordered a CT scan which was done today. My aunt received a call from the physician who now said he had "bad news" and it was lung cancer. He also wanted to do a needle biopsy to confirm. Why would a physician make a confident diagnosis as he did over the phone, based on CT scan results then say he wanted to do a needle biopsy?? I would expect to hear something along the lines of "we need to rule out Cancer", not I have "bad news, it is cancer". Obviously, my aunt and uncle are beside themselves with this fresh diagnosis, and not to fault anyone but I was surprised to learn he had not gone for a follow up until now as my aunt was a nurse and on top of his medical issues like a hawk. Neither here nor there, the milk is spilled, and we cannot look back, "shoulda, woulda. coulda" don't count for "nada, and all we can do is wait for the last shoe, but I still say it is unconscionable to levy a diagnosis in an assured manner before the biopsy is even done, unless I am out of the loop and this is common procedure. Nothing is ever easy, except for the other guy, but that's life, so, as all older than I who tell me to, I'm "living it while Im young", my wife owns a travel agency, and travel I will........ We are off to Jamaica on Thursday......But I can only hope things will be Ok back home....

3/19 update: Aparantly the CT scan is pretty convincing, I met my aunt and uncle at his Kidney Drs. appointment who was faxed the report. The doctor pulled me aside after stating that he needed a biopsy, and said it looks pretty conclusive that it is probably a lung cancer. They are unaware of his thoughts, but now having this information, I suppose it is not good. There is a 3 cm. mass in the lower right lung which I also assume is a good size for tumor meaning it probably will be diagnosed as a stage 4 if the needle biopsy confirms cancer.

Last edited by rp1965; 03-18-2009 at 09:26 AM.

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Old 11-07-2009, 08:21 AM   #2
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young61 HB User
Re: Uncle was just "Diagnosed"

A CT scan with contrast is done with a chemical injected into the body, That chemical
is attracted to cancer cells and causes them to light up, That is why the Doctor is so sure it's cancer, I have had lung cancer 4 times and the CT scan with contrast, I never would believe the Doctor and each time requested a needle biopsy and each time it came back cancer, The first 3 times I was I guess lucky and it could be cut out, This time #4 luck has ran out I have a number of spots in both lungs and it has spread to my liver. They say if I get Chemo they may be able to keep me going for a year or so.
I don’t want it but my family is begging me to at least try it once.
Good luck in your battle and God bless

Old 12-02-2009, 04:21 PM   #3
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adjusterrka HB User
Re: Uncle was just "Diagnosed"

I was diagnosed with stage III lung cancer Sept. of 2007 and underwent surgery to remove the tumors. The tumors once again appeared on my chest wall, esophogus and lung in Sept. of 2008. Substantial chemo and numerous radiation treatments and as well as a daily chemo pill now, the exsiting tumors indicate no growth and no new turmors have been found through CT scans.

CT scans are pretty much the means to determine cancer cells, and the biopsy simply a means to verify those cells are present. However, a biopsy can only determine if there is cancer, but not that it isn't cancer cells in tumors.

Should a biopsy needle enter a "spot" and reveal no cancer cells present, the remaing portion of that "spot" may very well encompass cancer cells without evidence being drawn from the biopsy needle.

It seems the CT scan is the best method to determine cancer cells that are present in the body. If nothing "lights up", good news usually follows.

Best of luck....

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