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CT SCAN results

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Hello Again ...
My onco doc wanted to do a CT Scan because of lab results she got. So I went this past Wednesday and got a call from my doc with this news >>>> We found spots on your lungs. She said she can't do a biopsy because the spots are too small. Good news I guess. She said to come back for another CT Scan in 3 months. I have not been treated for my breast cancer. I did have a lumpectomy and was told I would probably need chemo (Stage2a, ER/PR+. HER2-, 3cm tumor, node negative, invasive papillary carcinoma, non invasive in situ DCIS). I decided I wanted the Oncotype test done and it came back that breast cancer recurrence is at 4%. YAY me! NO chemo! I do need to have a second surgery to get more tissue because the margins show that the cancer was within 1mm of the tumors circumference. Which means, there is a chance cancer cells are still present and can find their way outside of my breast tissue. Now I am faced with this new scenario. DO I have lung cancer? Fibrosis? COPD? I don't know. But I've decided I have to take control. I am starting on Monday to get a second opinion on the CT Scan results. I also want to know why it has taken 9 weeks to get a script for radiation therapy to begin. I am soooooooooooooo angry and depressed. Being newly diagnosed with breast cancer makes it hard for someone to make the right choices. It's amazing how much I've learned since I found this lump (August 24th). With these "spots" on my lungs, I am not going to lie in wait and find out it's too late to keep me alive. It may not be cancer, but I am not taking any chances.

Do any of you have a similar story? What did you find out? Was it something to really be concerned about?

Love from a pink sister
Mary

New Flower
Posts: 4142
Joined: Aug 2009

When my lumpectomy margins were not clear I decided to have radical mastectomy. In my opinion, you need at least think about getting Chemo. Second opinion is a good idea, , do not forget that Oncotype test is a computer program which is based on statistics. Please discuss it with your doctors (second opinion).
Wishing you the best
New Flower

MAJW
Posts: 2515
Joined: May 2009

Is correct......I've learned from personal experience, no wait and see games....get a second and even third opinion, if necessary! I also agree that personally, if I were in your shoes, I'd take chemo...no one wants it, but better safe than sorry.....

Please keep us posted...we care.
Hugs, Nancy

Angie2U's picture
Angie2U
Posts: 2993
Joined: Sep 2009

I'm so sorry about your CT scan results. Sending prayers and hugs!

Angie

DebbyM's picture
DebbyM
Posts: 3294
Joined: Oct 2009

I agree with what everyone else wrote in re to a 2nd opinion. It couldn't hurt and it might help.

Good luck to you,

Debby

LoveBabyJesus's picture
LoveBabyJesus
Posts: 1659
Joined: Jan 2011

Hi Mary -- I am sorry that now you are thinking about this all the time, I am sure. These tests are good screening method, but also show every little detail in the body allowing the person to stress results. Many of those results are false alarm and I pray yours is that case, and it should be. Please try to stay positive and not overthink too much until you know for sure. Getting a second opinion is always good, getting a third is being extra careful which is also good so I support that decision.

I too suggest you get chemo. I had clean nodes and took it, but I was 32 (my cells were grade 3) so I kinda had to. We'll be here to hold your hand.

Sending you positive enery and praying all is well. Stay positive.

survivorbc09
Posts: 4378
Joined: Jun 2009

Staying positive is so very important! Praying for you.

Hugs, Jan

Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3604
Joined: May 2009

I'm sorry Mary. I am sending positive thoughts, prayers and lots of support to you.

Hugs, Lex

laughs_a_lot's picture
laughs_a_lot
Posts: 1369
Joined: Mar 2011

What ever you do, do it with abandon. No point in giving bc an upper hand.

skipper54's picture
skipper54
Posts: 936
Joined: Feb 2011

I agree, get a 2nd opinion, and a third if it makes you feel better. Fight like a GIRL!

SIROD's picture
SIROD
Posts: 2204
Joined: Jun 2010

Dear Mary,

Why not inquire if you could have a PET scan? This technology works very well on soft tissue (lungs). I have mets in my lungs and pleura and it does a wonderful job picking up on the cancer.

This would tell you if the spots are cancer or something else. Not all irregularities picked up on the ct scan is cancer.

I had a dry non productive cough for a year before I went for the ct scan that found widespread cancer in both lungs and lining. I also had shortness of breath. I thought they were a side effect of a toxic drug I had started for one of my autoimmune diseases. I developed a serious infection which was acute and postponed the ct scan until that problem was under control.

After the ct scan found the cancer, I had a PET scan that agreed with the ct scan. I went for a VATS (video assisted thoracic surgery). The thoracic surgeon stated I was studded with tumors. I refuse Fine Needle Biopsy, I always found them to be a waste of time and money. FNB were always inconclusive for me. Even when I new the target could not be missed. VATS is easy, an overnight hospital stay and I couldn't wait to go home the next day. I went back to work a few days later.

Five weeks the next ct scan showed everything had double and I began Faslodex which rendered me stable for a while. When progression occurred I went on Femara and it worked for 2 years give and take a few months. Then... I am now in another hot stew but that isn't a story for you right now.

You need to have a PET scan in order to relieve your mind. The unknown is worst the the known. One can deal with facts but when you don't know, your mind goes everywhere that isn't pleasant.

Wishing you the best of luck Mary.

Doris

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Oh dear ... Doris ... you are an inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing this journey. My heart skipped a beat when you said you are "now in another hot stew". I pray that you will FIGHT LIKE A GIRL and do whatever it takes to beat this beast.

I am set for a second surgery to get those pesky cancer cells that got left behind during a lumpectomy. Can you believe it is now 10 weeks since that first surgery. I got to the onco doc within 4weeks after surgery. I waited 2 weeks for the oncotype test results. THEN, her office staff took their sweet time getting me set up for the CT SCAN. I don't understand how or why my onco do wanted to wait for the second surgery to occur KNOWING that there were cancer crumbs floating around inside of me. The Cat Scan says that these spots are of concern for the possibility of pulmonary mets. The spots are 5mm to 6mm in size. From what I've read, a PET Scan would not be able to read such small spots. The size this scan works best on is walnut size. I also learned that there is a way to get to these spots and remove them. My onco doc did not tell me about the "possibility of pulmonary mets" ... she only said "let's do another scan in 3 months to see if they grow". I am furious!

I did get on the phone and called everyone under the sun. It took me 3 hours to find someone who understood my fears. She set me up with a thoracic surgeon. I see him on 12/5. I cannot wait. The only symptoms I have are chest pain. I get sharp pains that actually make me double over. I've always thought the pains were like a "stitch in the side". I do have these pains in the middle front and back of ribs. I am sick with worry.

I just want answers. Then I can kick into high gear and do what I have to do.

With this being Thanksgiving, I am thankful for all the people who have taken the time to hold my hand while I go through this very trying time. I "thank you" and wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!

May God Bless You with better health.

Your Pink Sister,
Mary
xoxo

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

I'm so sorry that you have to go thru another surgery Mary. Very glad you get in the 5th of December to see the thoracic surgeon. I am like you, I want answers and I want them now. After all, this is our life.

Wishing you the best of luck and I will be praying for you. Keep us updated.

Hugs, Noel

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Tomorrow ... December 5th 2011. It is the day I get to see the thoracic surgeon. It is the day (I hope) that gives me a chance to breath. (the song NO AIR floats in my brain everyday) I've done a lot of research online and pray that these nodules are B9. I honestly don't want to leave his office without hearing that a biopsy will be performed.

As for the second breast surgery, THE BIG C IS GONE! She got it all. Now I have to wait for the pathology report. It's been a long road. No treatments. No answers. The thing I found interesting is this ... when I mentioned to the breast surgeon that I had a CT Scan, she said "the onco doc ordered a scan with a score of 4 from the Oncotype test?" My onco doc ordered more than the Oncotype on the same day. She ordered blood work AND tumor marker tests. Hence, the CT Scan. The BS was surprised to hear that there is a possibility of lung mets. I guess she figured Stage2, grade 2 wasn't that big a deal. I don't know cuz I never had BC before.

SO, I am anxious and cautious about the appointment tomorrow. WHY does breast cancer metastasize to other parts of the body? I honestly pray I don't hear this diagnosis. I want the biopsy so I can breath easier or attack this with everything available. I have a feeling I will be told to wait the dreaded 3 months for a new scan to see if the nodules change in size. I for the life of me do not understand how a doctor could tell a patient to wait KNOWING there is cancer present elsewhere!

Wish me luck ...

HO HO HO

Pink SIster Mary

SIROD's picture
SIROD
Posts: 2204
Joined: Jun 2010

Hi Mary,

Your breast surgeon is good for surgery and not on figuring out "cancer". Any stage of breast cancer is a concern.

I wish you had a PET scan and it does pick up cancer earlier than any other test, even in the mm sizes.

However, you are going to see a Thoracic Surgeon so he/she more than likely will offer at VATS or FNB. VATS is more invasive but usually there is proof. FNB for me were always inconclusive and I refused with the lung & pleura mets to agree to have one. Don't expect him/her to say to you what they think you have. Mine wouldn't.

I picked up a copy of his notes, so I knew what he expected to find. He wouldn't tell me what he found during surgery though I knew he had arrived at some conclusion. I asked when he stop by for a visit when I was recovering. He said, "wait for the path report". I picked up a copy of his surgery notes. Diagnose was the same Pre and Post Surgery widespread pulmonary and pleural metastasis. I was annoyed but, he was very good at what he did. I would go back to him in a second. I doubt that there will ever be a need in my case.

If anyone knew why a breast cancer cell migrated to another organ and that organ accepted it, allowing it to grow and take over, they would know how to cure breast cancer. That's the mystery. Immune system is suppose to make certain that stray cells are destroyed not taking up homesteading rights in a place they don't belong.

I am hoping your spots are not cancer. There can be many reasons to have something else, inflammation, old scars and etc.

Remember surgeons will push surgery, oncologist will offer chemotherapy or hormonal therapy, radiation oncologist will offer radiation. When I see a specialist, I make certain that I only talk about their specialty. The podiatrist isn't interested in my uveitis problems but with my PTTD. I might mention that I have had worsening this or that but, usually it is included in a few lines on my "Present Medication" list or if I have scans, I give them the results.

I do hope all will be well for you Mary tomorrow. Please update us.

Best,

Doris

PS: My own hot stew, I will know soon. At my stage in this mess, I don't mind waiting.

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

For everyone of you who took the time to hold my hand, I THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. I feel I have "guardian angels" all around me. My angels have given food for thought and so much hope. My strength comes from knowing YOU. Even though we have never met.

Again...

THANK YOU ... I know my sisters have my back. My hope is that YOU ALL have a blessed Holiday Season and that you continue to get better and betterer!

XOXO
MARY

MAJW
Posts: 2515
Joined: May 2009

I'm hoping all goes well tomorrow...know that we care and wish you the best!

Hopefully, one day, they will find out what causes cancer..only then will they be able to cure it...

Hugs & keep us updated!
Nancy

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2338
Joined: Jun 2010

Hope you get answers tomorrow, Mary. I'll be with you whether the bus is going or not.

Suzanne

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Hello to ALL of you again ...

The visit to the thoracic surgeon produced these results....Several small nodules that were deemed too small to biopsy. One of the nodules is 6mm and was of concern because it shows some density. Not sure what that means. But the doctor was concerned. He made a call to my onco doc (who did not know I made an appointment for this doctor) to find out what she would do when she was told of his findings. He tells me she would not change her course of treatment at this time. He said she told him that the hormone therapy should pretty much take care of business. I told him I have not started ANY KIND of treatment and he said he got the impression that she had me on some kind of hormone therapy. I've left 3 messages with the onco doc for a return call to discuss "just what treatment I am supposed to be on." I am going to see the BC on Friday to discuss the latest pathology report. I am assuming nothing will be out of order. I say this because I would think the onco doc has the report already and might want to change her approach IF there was something new to deal with. I see the radiology oncologist on the 15th for a consult. FINALLY...treatment will start! It's been nearly 4 months since I found the lump and I think that is a long enough time to figure out what therapies need to be done. Right now, I am angry that my onco doc seems very laid back about my condition. When I saw her the first time, she was soooooooooooo perfect. Any communications I have with her now are all phone calls. And she seems miffed that I even ask her questions. It ought to be interesting (but I honestly don't give a crap) what she says about me going for my own appointment with the thoracic surgeon.

I am a bit worried about the density issue of the largest nodule. Having to wait 2 more months to get the next CT Scan is going to be like chewing on aluminum foil. Totally unpleasant.

BAH!

Merry HO HO

SIROD's picture
SIROD
Posts: 2204
Joined: Jun 2010

Hi Mary,

Do you have your surgical report notes from your Breast Surgeon?
Do you have your pathology report?
Do you have your ct scan report?

You should also include the doctors notes from your various appointments, surgeon, oncologist, thoracic surgeon.

Reports can be picked up at your Medical Records department where your surgery was done, ct scan was taken. You can ask for the notes from your various doctors at their office.

All that will be required is a signature. It is your right to have these notes and reports. They have to give them to you.

It is nice to know what page they are really on via their notes. Perhaps your oncologist believes she gave you a prescription for hormonal therapy as you are ER and PR positive. This might work better than chemotherapy if you are post menopausal. This might also take care of any nodes in your lungs. You should be on some sort of treatment.

I have my notes in order to give all my doctors a better look in what is going on with me. One of my doctors left his practice. They were four doctors and he and another decided to leave. It wasn't cordial and if I wanted his notes, I had to pay for them. I had all my notes from him as requested after each appointment for the 3 years. All I needed to do his photocopy the notes in my possession and give him copies. He didn't need to start from scratch with me. Notes belong to you, as you paid for them.

When you see your oncologist, if you are not happy with her, then request a new oncologist. Sometimes, we just don't click with a person. Request a change.

It sounds as though the communication line isn't open with your oncologist. This isn't good for you.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Doris

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Well ... she called me last night (oncologist) I can say I am breathing MUCH easier today. She was the doctor I first met a few weeks ago. She told me about her conversation with the TS and had hoped he would relay her message the way she told him. She told me that she won't change my treatment plan at this because the nodules are very small and doing surgery to the lungs just doesn't seem to be a good move right now. It's dangerous actually. She said the hormone therapy (which I have not started) will work as good as chemo so she is going that route. IF the hormone therapy shrinks the tumors then we have an answer. They are cancerous! Not sure if I will do the hormone therapy AND radiation at the same time. She wants me to discuss this with the radiology oncologist. I hear it can be very toxic to have both at the same time. By time I am done with radiation, it will be time for a new CT Scan anyway. I guess I can wait to get started on HT. I don't know. It's very scary knowing there is a possibility that cancer is gathering around the table having a feast in my lungs! I am trusting her on this. I have to.

I am feeling relief today. I have an appt with the BS on Friday. My onco doc already told me the path report is perfect. NO problems! I have to make an appointment to see the onco doc (her request) for next week.

So all is well for the moment. I am looking forward to enjoying this holiday season and cutting the rug! I am such a party animal!

I hope you are feeling well and that your Holidays are merry and bright! Keep in touch. You are in my prayers. Thank you for being here for me. xoxo

Mary

SIROD's picture
SIROD
Posts: 2204
Joined: Jun 2010

Dear Mary,

I am glad that you had a good talk with your doctor. Did she say what kind of hormonal therapy that she will be giving you? I assure you that you can do radiation and hormonal therapy together. I did with no adverse effects. Also if your nodules are cancer, the hormonal therapy will reduce them or make them go away, like in disappear.

You don't often hear them do surgery on lungs for breast cancer. It is a hard place to do surgery as you have the rib cage protecting it. That is why when cancer metastasize to that area, it is chemotherapy or hormonal therapy. Once in a while they will remove one lesion but, I would hardly think that is worth what you go through for that sort of surgery. It is different when it is primary, they then can remove a tumor but when in has metastasize, then one doesn't know how much cancer is there and still to small to find.

Cancer is not an emergency. You don't need to start a hormonal right off, but I wouldn't hold out until after radiation, as cells to keep growing and multiplying.

Best wishes to you, Mary

Doris

PS: I have my ct scan report and it is what I expected. My vacation is over and it will be back to the drugs for me. Ah well, I did have a lovely time without them.

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Thanks Doris ... you make so much sense. When I see my oncologist (Tuesday) we will discuss this hormone and rads combo further. My pathology report show that the proliferation rate on these "c" cells are HIGH. That worries me. It is interesting that hormone therapy works like chemo. I guess it only works for those of us who are ER+, right?

My heart skipped a beat seeing your comment about your own CT scan. It just isn't fair! What drugs will you be taking? I think of you often even though we have never met.

Sister forever!

xoxo
Mary

jnl's picture
jnl
Posts: 3873
Joined: May 2009

I was told by my rads oncologist to not do hormone therapy during rads. I will be anxious to see what yours says Mary.

Good luck on Friday! Have a great holiday!

Hugs, Leeza

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

Hey Leeza

I will update after my appointment. How is the rad treatment going? I haven't started. Not anxious about it at all.

One of the sisters posted that she has a nutritionist because her diet has to be specific since she is ER+. Have you heard this too? I am ER/PR+, Her2 negative, Stage 2, grade 2. My head is spinning.

Be well my sister

Mary

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

It is great to know that you are feeling well and looking forward to the holidays Mary! I wish you the best and will be saying a prayer for you!

Hugs, Diane

LoveBabyJesus's picture
LoveBabyJesus
Posts: 1659
Joined: Jan 2011

Mary -- Sending you hugs and positive thoughts your way. Please keep us posted.

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

THANK YOU!!!! right back atcha <3

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