CSN Login
Members Online: 13

shoulder pain turns out to be hardness in the lung

debbsgate
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2002

My husband has been treated for chronic shoulder pain for the last 2 mos. After visits to the family doctor and to an Orthapedic doctor and my husband suffering more and more pain the family doctor scheduled an MRI. After an MRI was done on the shoulder the results showed no shoulder problem, the doctor ordered chest X-rays. After the results of the chest x-ray he told my husband that he has a mass on his lung. The doctor ordered a cat scan and after a week and a half the doctor calls and says there is a hardness on the lung and schedules my husband to see a lung doctor, it will take almost 3 wks. to see him. No one will tell us whether or not we are dealing with cancer in the lung or not. I'm not understanding why it's taken over 2 mos. to diagnose this. Does a cat scan show whether or not you have cancer or is a biopsy done to determine this. This limbo state of not knowing or getting very little information is irritating, I don't know if it's the doctors or if this is what to expect as far as medical treatment is concerned. I only know my husband's pain is getting worse and the doctor prescribed a form of morhphine to help him relieve the pain and to be able to sleep.

gelc
Posts: 29
Joined: May 2001

I was under the oncologists care for breast cancer when the nodule on my lung was found through a CAT scan. The used the word nodule, not mass. He immediately scheduled me for a lung biopsy, which turned out to be inconclusive. I then went to a thorasic surgeon who scheduled me for surgery the next week! From start to finish it was just 4 weeks, and yes, it was malignant.

I did see the pulminologist inbetween who did confirm the nodule on lung.

I find new doctors when I need to.

Ask around.
good luck
gail

denises
Posts: 8
Joined: Jun 2002

I had lung cancer that showed up on my ct scan. The scan said probably is cancer.To verify it I had a biopsy that confirmed it one week later and a biopsy will also tell you what king of cancer it is.I know that the waiting is long. I've was there last year.Please be strong you and you're husband both.My prayers are with you .

Denise

patr
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2002

I do understand your frustration. The tests that were taken of your husband will show "masses", but won't show "cancer". The only test I have taken that actually showed "cancer" was a PET scan and this was only ordered after chemo to see results (if any). The waiting is nerve racking (but 1.5 wks. for CAT results is a bit much!). Call the lung doc's office and request to be put on waiting list for a cancellation (you've probably already done this - be a pest). Hang in there - hopefully, it's not cancer....

debbsgate
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2002

Since I posted this subject my husband was hospitalized for 2 days and released. They did a cat scan, we were told that he would have to have a biopsy to determine if the mass is malignant. We were told if it was malignant that the prognosis is not good, even with chemo or radiation because of where the mass is. They told my husband that it wouldn't hurt him to wait 2 mos. if he chose to to have the biopsy done then they would do another cat scan and determine if there were any changes to that area. They called it a thickness on the lining of the lung. The doctor said he gave it a 50/50 chance of being malignant. My husband opted to wait the 2 mos. in the meantime I've already got a referral from another hospital that is supposed to be one of the best in our area. My husband is afraid if they open him up that if it is cancer it may spread faster. I am at my whits ends and don't know what to do right now. I don't want to pressure him too much but I think he needs to at least see another doctor. I'm not sure about the biopsy, they told him they had to break a couple of ribs, cut into one of the ribs to get to the area and get the tissue sample. My husband has never had to be in the hospital the entire 25 years we've been together, I had to practically hog-tie him to get him there when he was in so much pain in the chest area and had problems breathing. He finally gave in and at least with the antibotics they gave him he feels much better than he did before I took him there but we still are in a limbo state as far as what this is.

nancy810
Posts: 2
Joined: Dec 2001

I HAVE WHAT IS CALLED A PANCOAST TUMER THAT IS IN THE TOP OF THE LUNG PRESSING ON THE NERVES THAT CONTROL THE ARM, ALSO CAUSING SHOULDER PAIN. I WASTED 7 WEEKS GOING TO A CHIROPRACTOR BECAUSE I WAS SURE IT WAS A PINCHED NERVE. PLEASE GET A BIOPSY SO THAT YOU GET THE FACTS. I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY CHEMO OR RADIATION WOULD NOT WORK FOR THAT AREA. I HAD BOTH AND THE SIZE WENT FROM 2 1/2 " TO UNDER 1" AT SECOND SCAN IN FEB 2002 NOW I HAD ANOTHER SCAN THIS MONTH AND ITS UNDER 1/2 " AND THEY SAID IT COULD JUST BE SCAR TISSUE. YOU NEED TO KNOW WHAT YOU ARE UP AGAINST. BEST OF LUCK , PRAYERS WITH YOU .
NANCY

evans
Posts: 12
Joined: Jun 2002

I likewise read the earlier posts thinking this sounds like a pancoast tumor (superior suclus tumor). I didn't waste too much time at the neurologist battling the nasty "carpal tunnel" I had (arm/wrist pain not shoulder for me)- but certainly advise to get biopsy now. Also agree that chemo & radiation can work on this type lung cancer so not sure why you would be told otherwise. Does anybody have Horner syndrome associated with their pancoast tumor? I would be interested in talking about dealing with it. Symptoms are droopy eyelid, pupil will not dilate, 1/2 face & head will not sweat (all this is on the side of your arm/shoulder pain).
Bambi

antsynancy
Posts: 17
Joined: Apr 2002

I had a chest xray as a follow up to pneumonia in January. On the xray they saw a "nodule" on my lung and I was told it was suspicious of cancer. The next day I was able to have a CAT scan done and sat down with the radiologist and he told me it also was a suspicious nodule. No one can actually diagnose the nodule, mass or whatever they call it, until a biopsy is done.
After going to a surgeon, he also wouldn't commit to calling it cancer, I guess maybe because of malpractice or something, surgery was scheduled.

Many tests, pulmonary funcion, MRI, blood tests, pulmonalogy doctors, and I finally had surgery. It was initially told to me on January 24, 2002 and I had surgery on March 1, 2002. It seemed like a lifetime of waiting.

It was maglignent, stage 1 non small cell cancer.

I was extremely lucky no chemo or radiation.

Hang in there, read as much as you can, talk to the American Cancer Society, and ask many questions from the doctor.

Good Luck and Best Wishes

Nancy

Subscribe with RSS
About Cancer Society

The content on this site is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition. Use of this online service is subject to the disclaimer and the terms and conditions.

Copyright 2000-2014 © Cancer Survivors Network