CSN Login
Members Online: 17

Lung Nodule in Left Lung

Posts: 9
Joined: Feb 2007

I have just had a Lung Nodule found by CT Scan in my left lung. It is 1 CM in size and in the lower end of the upper left lobe. I underwent a Needle Biopsy and I overheard the Doctor say that preliminary result were positive for Cancer.
I am waiting for my Doctor to call with final results. Anyone know how doctor doing needle biopsy could have a preliminary result? How do they determine if it is cancer if it spread? WHat should I expect as next steps if it is cancer? My dad just died in March from Lung Cancer, I smoked for 15 years and have stopped for 6 years. Doctor says the rest of my lungs look great! Any comments are appreciated. I am scared and have a 2 year old daughter to raise. Anyone know what survival might be?
Thanks for listening

Posts: 12
Joined: Feb 2007

I'm so sorry for your diagnosis. I'm not sure I can answer your questions, but I at least wanted to let you know that you are not alone!! Depending on what type of cancer it is, I would guess that they will probably want to do surgery to remove it. I will recommend that you ask your doctor about the possiblity of having a VATS, verses the other more invasive surgery. They will find out if it has spread, if and when they can remove the tumor.
I understand your fear, and your concern for your daughter. I'm a single Mom and have one Son, although he's older - 20, still, he was my first thought.
Anyway, good thoughts and prayers coming your way, that they can do surgery and remove all of the cancer!! Learn as much as you can about the type of cancer, that they determine it to be. Information helps deal with the fear. Then if you can, try to get to a Cancer Care Center, where they are better equipped to help you. Be as "proactive" as you can, and ask alot of questions. If you don't like the answers, or have any doubts - get a second opinion!!!! Take care and keep us posted!! Hugs. Deb

Posts: 1
Joined: May 2009

im alison and i had a tumor and had vats too but after the surgery i got very deppresed and siiad please keep me in your prayers the surgery took alot out of me and have trouble sleeping

Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2013

I went in for a well visit to my regular MD.  I said i would like a chest X-ray since I quit smoking.  The chest X-ray came back I had inflammation and fluids cocsistant with pneumonia.  since I had no symptoms he called it walking pneumonia.  Took antibiotics for 20 days and request a CT with contrast.  It came back two small nodules a a small scar tissue.  He said they are probably nothing and nay go away. we will recheck in 3 months.  I haven't received my report in mail, but probably today.  Everyone here got biopsy right away.  Do you think mine are too small for that?  Or should I see a pulmonary doc?

Posts: 13
Joined: Mar 2007

I was diagnosed with several nodules in my lung. I kept getting pneumonia and fevers. Finally, the one nodule grew and they did surgery. They were going to do just a lung resection and just take out the nodule, but went ahead and removed the upper left lobe. They also took out numerous lymph nodes to make sure the cancer had not spread. That was in February. They got all the cancer and now I have to go back every 6 months and get CT scans and pulmonary function tests. I know it's scary, but when they find it in the early stages like this, there is a very good chance that they can do surgery and get it all. Most lung cancers are way past the nodule stage when discovered, so keep the faith. It sounds like they found yours early.

Has anyone talked about you having a PET scan done? That's how they discovered that my nodule had turned into cancer.

I will pray for you, but I have faith that you will be fine. I went through the same thing, and so far, so good. Stay strong.

Posts: 1048
Joined: Aug 2006

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002 and lung cancer in 2006. Fear hit me pretty bad the first time around and I dealt with it by reading. On my travels through the maze of information out there, I got to more than one web site that showed pathology photographs of what doctors see when they look under the microscope. It took a bit, but eventually I learned to look and tell the difference between "normal", benign, and malignant(cancer) on my kinds of cancer. I don't know why--I was just curious. But what the doctor sees when he sees cancer is messed up normal tissue. The nucleii in the center of the cell look wrong. Sometimes there are more or less chromosones than there should be.The shape of the cell is off too. Sometimes that shape lets them know what kind it is like "oat cell carcinoma". Solid malignancies show the cancer cells invading surrounding tissue. The color of the prepared slide helped to tell what kind of tissue the cancer came from. Now they also add in genetic testing,but I will let the computers "read" those results. Specialized pathologists should look over what your doctor found and write up a report that tells you exactly what kind of cancer you have and what stage it is in. This is commonly done after all biopsies and all operations.They may want a PET/CAT scan it see what they are dealing with before they go in for surgery. 1 cm is small, but it pays to be aggressive as you can with this nasty stuff. I was lucky enough to be going to a teaching hopital and got the VATS procedure for my biopsy. I was back on my feet in short order, but then they discovered that it was lung cancer and I needed more surgery (about 2 weeks apart). It has taken longer to recover from removal of my middle right lobe, though they tried their best to give me a modified VATS procedure. VATS is like laproscopy on the lung. (Video Assisted Thoracic Surgery) You want an expert if they are doing surgery by camera!!! They told me I did not need more treatment at this time, but some 1 cm. lung cancers do require chemo. Gentic testing is currently being developed to differentiate who does and who doesn't need chemo, but that may not be available where you are. Not smoking will help you recover from surgery faster, so good for you in quitting! Do your breathing exercises and take frequent walks to help recover after surgery. Recovery is possible. You will need help lifting things for a while after surgery, but eventually strength comes back and you don't want to pop stitches after lung surgery. It took me from August to October to get back to the gym and carrying out the laundry basket again. I'm back to taking 3 mile walks, but not jogging yet. I go to the gym for yoga, spinning, cardio and weight lifting (I'm female by the way, but exercise is one researched way to reduce and postpone the possibility of further cancer). The only child care issues I ran into is avoiding strep infections. They took me out the 2's and 3's class because they always were in the doctor's office with strep and I couldn't handle it. You may want to invest in hand santitizer and good old fashioned soap. Also teach your little one how to sneeze in her arm rather than her hand and how to blow her nose on her own. I know, that takes time. No one should limit your survival. The stats are rotten, but they describe populations, not you. Good luck and prayers and ((((hugs)))!

MadelynJoe's picture
Posts: 96
Joined: Sep 2003

Dear gcolburn:

I was diagnosed with Stage 1 NSCLC in the right lower lobe in May of 2005 (2.8 cm nodule). I had my lower right lobe removed in June of 2005 and then had several chemo treatments in August of 2005 as a precautionary measure (i.e., No other tumors were detected.)

Like you, I was terrified, because my mother died of lung cancer. I am happy to report that I have been cancer free for 25 months now.

Your 1 cm nodule is very tiny. I think you have an excellent prognosis of having it removed and living a normal life span.

I don't know where you live but, I would encourage you to find a surgeon that can do your surgery by laprascope (several very small incisions)so you won't have such a long recovery time.

You can do it; just keep the faith. Feel free to send me a message any time you would like.

God bless you on this journey.


brenda s
Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2010

i just found out i have a 1cm nonule on my left lung,,i am scared to death,,dont know where to turn to or talk to,,i thought maybe u could help me

catcon49's picture
Posts: 391
Joined: Aug 2008

I, like you had a 1 cm nodule in the lower left lobe of my right lung. Scared to death but my family doc was very good. They did a biopsy. The doctor that did the biopsy told me that day that he was reasonably sure it was cancer. It was. The next step was a PET scan. It light up. That was confirmation of cancer. I then called the University of Pennsylvania ( rated as one of the top 10 cancer hospitals and only 2 hrs away from me.) The number 1 hospitatl Sloane Kettering was not able to see me they told me to try Penn. I had an appointment with a surgeon. She was wonderful. They did VATS Surgery. Minimally invasive ( as minimal as removing the lower lobe of my lung could be) First the where going to do a wedge section. But the surgeon decided to remove the lower lung. After the surgery the pathologist sliced and diced the lung up. They also remove some lymphnodes to see if it spread also had an MRI of the brain to see if there was anything that spread there. Nothing spread. This is where the official dx came Stage Ia lung cancer. I didn't need chemo. I spoke with a oncologist from Penn, she offered a clinical trial, but was not pushing me towards it. The surgeon said about a 85 to 90% survival rate after 5 years. Oncologist said she would go as high as 95%. I went back to work 8 weeks after surgery. Light duty because I do heavy lifting at the Post Office. Now 8 months cancer free. I walk about 3 miles a day(not all at one time) I work out at curves. I only have a little discomfort at the surgical site. Not even enough to complain about. The doctors said I probably would not be running any marathons, but I didn't plan on it anyway. Hopefully yours will not be cancer. But if it is there is alot they can do especially when they catch it early. Good luck and God Bless you and your family. Let us know how you make out.

Posts: 1
Joined: Feb 2012

I too had a 1cm nodule in my lung. It's said to be cancer as well. I just want to know more about the process so I know what to expect .for example how long was the procedure,how long did u have to stay in the hospital, any problems with breathing n so fourth. Thank you

Posts: 1
Joined: Oct 2012

Thanks for your post. I am so happy for you and hope filled for you that you have a long and happy cancer free life. I was wondering who you told if anyone before you found out it was cancerous? Did they do the biopsy following X-ray? I am going in for a ct scan in a couple of hours. I have an 8mm nodule on my left upper lobe. I am 57 with adult children and grandchildren and am not wanting to worry them. I am scared because everyone on my father's side has died from cancer including my father and my maternal aunt and great grandmother had breast cancer. My brother was diagnosed with nonhodgkins lymphoma at 28. He beat it but has recently passed away. What did you do when you first found out...I find myself taking care of the people I've told...making it okay for them because they are worried. Just was wondering...

Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2012

I just found out I have a 6 mm in my lower left lung and awaiting an appointment for my CT scan. I am terrified and scared.

Do tell me about your procedure and diagnosis. I am having flu type symptoms and heavy chest pains.

Will the CT scan detect if any other areas have nodules will it be just the lung area?
Are you having pains etc.????

z's picture
Posts: 1320
Joined: May 2009

Sorry you had to find us, you might want to start a new discussion as the one you posted on is from 2007. Usually, since the nodule is so small they will rescan you in 3 months to see if it grew. I had a 7mm lung nodule in my lower right lung and I was scanned 3 months later and it had grew to 1cm, so it had to come out. I had a lower right lung lobectomy via the vats procedure, and that was on 9-23-10 and I have been fine. Please realize that the nodule has been caught very early. I was given a 80% chance of survival. I had chest pains and my surgeon said it was due to anxiety. Now thats me so you have to tell your dr. I wish you well, and please keep us posted. If you have any more questions please ask. I needed no chemo or radiation as it is not recommended for 1a lung cancer. Lori

ToBeGolden's picture
Posts: 696
Joined: Aug 2010

Thank you all for the stories with positive outcomes. I'm a veteran of the Head & Neck Wars, but new here. Absolutely need those positive stories.

Bowie 1
Posts: 3
Joined: May 2009

Hiya gcolburn, I had stage 2 lung cancer in my upper left lobe with no spread. It was larger than yours. I had half of my lung removed and I'm writing this over 20 years on.

All the best.

Posts: 5
Joined: Mar 2010

My husband too was just diagnosed. What to expect? Lot's of tests and a lot of time in between to diagnose. It was about 3 months between my husband seeing the spot on a pre operative chest xray to the time he started chemo. They also may want a full body PET scan and brain MRI to see if it has spread and this will tell them the cancer stage. It seemed like everything going on was taking so much time but unfortunately it all has to be done. My suggestions is you need someone to go through this with you and someone to go to the doctor appointments and keep track of all of this. Set up a calendar with all of your appointments. Get and keep track of all the doctor and diagnostic reports for future reference. And of course get at least 2 or 3 second opinions since every doctor talks about things in a different way so even if they all agree on diagnosis and treatment you will hear things a little different.

Patty Kearney's picture
Patty Kearney
Posts: 2
Joined: Aug 2012

I have cancer in my lymph nodes in the lung/bronchial tube. Stage 2. I just finished radiation and chemo and waiting to have a pet scan to see if it is gone. this is my second round as I had a tumor in my right lung and radiation took care of it. I can't have surgery for this coz of my heart failure and COPD. I am a little scared

Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2012

I was just told I have a nodule in my left lower lobe. I have a family history of cancer.
What are the chances thatr it is cancer vs. not cencerous?

z's picture
Posts: 1320
Joined: May 2009

Nodules may be other things rather than cancer, google lung nodule and you will get a lot of information. CT scans pick up everything. Nodules are very common.

Posts: 1
Joined: Sep 2012

I just got severe chest congestion and got a chest X-ray. Doc found that there is a 1cm nodule. He recommended CT scan which I need to wait 2 months and set up so they can see any growth. Is there a quicker way to find out? If it is cancer then I can gain these 2 months by faster treatments. I am 47 male. I know odds don't mean much because there may be a big spread in the bell curve so there are all kinds of outcomes (as opposed to a tight distribution). So the odds can go all the way upto full life span. Is PET scan preferable so I don't have to wait 2 months for change in nodule size to figure out it is cancerous?

z's picture
Posts: 1320
Joined: May 2009

Hello, Sorry you had to find us. The follow up to see if it has grown is common. Yet an x-ray doesn't show as much as a pet scan or ct scan. The nodule could be from your cold. All nodules are not lung cancer, they can be caused by inflammation. The only way to tell if its cancer is with a biopsy. I don't know if your dr would prescribe a pet or ct scan, but you might be able to pay out of pocket for those tests if your insurance will not approve them. Keep us posted. Lori

Posts: 2
Joined: Sep 2012

hi just wanted to know if a mri scan is better as don't want ct scan wit the dye they use i think if i had a ct on my lung i have a 1centermeter thing there thanks

Posts: 743
Joined: Mar 2011

There is a difference in the type of picture each takes. MRIs are best for brain and CT does a better representation of the lung. The CT can be done without dye but it will be far more difficult to read if you can find a doc who will request they schedule it that way. Please understand that in the diagnostic process they will want to do a PET scan as well. If the biopsy is positive for cancer there will be a PET Scan and a bone scan to look for metastices.

Have you had an X-ray or CT that pointed out this 1 cm thing? When you write again would you consider starting a new thread of your own to make it easier for me and others to find you to help? Go ahead and answer here but next time. Okay?

BTW, in three weeks I will have survived 2 years with stage four adenocarcenoma. When I was diagnosed I was told I had ten months to live.

Posts: 2
Joined: Dec 2012

I don't know where to begin. I guess tommorow, AFTER the biopsy would make a lot more sense, but I can't sleep, and thought this might be a good place begin. At least to help pass the hours until 2pm tommorow.

Is anyone familiar with CBC results such as high platelet count indicating lung cancer!

Posts: 2
Joined: Dec 2012

I don't know where to begin. I guess tommorow, AFTER the biopsy would make a lot more sense, but I can't sleep, and thought this might be a good place begin. At least to help pass the hours until 2pm tommorow.

Is anyone familiar with CBC results such as high platelet count indicating lung cancer!

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 2000-2015 © Cancer Survivors Network