Dec 08, 2011 - 6:54 am
I am desperate the help my mom. She has a mass on left lung and recurring pleural effusion on the right. In July on this year she had pulmonary embolus in both lungs. In the course of treatment, a small mass was seen on left lung via X-ray, CT scan and PET scan. Pleural effusion was drained twice via thoracentisis. The fluid showed no cancer cells and was classified as an exudative pleural effusion. At that point her Pulmonologist stated " that cancer was highly likely" and at the "top of his list" when asked about the recurrence of the effusion.
My mom was referred to a thoracic surgeon. This surgeon required cardiac clearance prior to surgery because of past heart issues. After many tests, the placement of two stents and waiting for a month to pass to take Plavix, she was deemed "cleared but high risk". This was mid November, about 4 months after the possibility of Cancer was mentioned the first time.
Surgery was scheduled for December 9th. Right after Thanksgiving my mom has severe abdominal pain along with other GI symptoms. These have been recurring since July as well. She currently has been in the hospital for 12 days. No diagnosis for GI issues found after extensive testing. Being in the hospital so long has weakened my mom's overall health and she decided to delay the lung biopsy and Pleurodesis.
I feel like we are back to square one. Is a biopsy truly the only way to definitively diagnose Cancer? A treatment plan for the growing mass on her left lung is contingent on a diagnosis of the effusion on the right.
Any guidance is greatly appreciated.