Questions Re: Diagnosis

canadian1000 Member Posts: 1

Hi everyone,

My grandmother (age 75) was recently received an unconfirmed diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer with possible mets in her stomach lymph nodes (not sure where else yet). After complaining of some minor wheezing for a several months, an x-ray revealed a 4cm mass in the upper lobe of her right lung, and scattered subcentimeter masses in the bottom lobe of her left lung. Her lungs also needed to be drained of fluid. She has had no other symptoms, pain, fatigue or anything of that sort.

In the past year, she has lost roughly 22lbs that we thought was the result of her experiencing a number of unfortunate events in her life. Aside from this weight loss, she is still slightly overweight at 154 lbs. 

She had a number of CT scans, a biopsy of the 4cm tumour, as well as a biopsy of the fluid in her lungs. 

She will be receiving her results in the coming week. 

Can anyone tell me what questions I should be asking her oncologist once we receive the results? I want to be as informed as possible about what options will be available to her and what I can advocate for.

My grandmother is a pretty active, feisty woman, who is not ready to go just yet. I am very confident that she will fight this as hard as she can as she wants to be around for at least another 5 years. She has never had any other pre-existing conditions, and she quit smoking about 12 years ago.


Thanks for your help!


  • jorola
    jorola Member Posts: 242 Member
    here's a few basic questions to start off with...

    Some you may already have the answers to so ignore them and they are written from the patient's point of view:

    • What stage is my lung cancer?
    • What are my treatment options?
    • Are clinical trials an option for me?
    • How do I find clinical trials?
    • What results do you expect?
    • How long is the course of treatment?
    • How often do I receive the treatment and how much time will each one take?
    • Where can I receive treatment? Will I need help to and from treatment?
    • What are the side effects of treatment?
    • Is there a way to minimize the side effects?
    • Can the treatment cause other problems such as heart, lung, kidney damage/disease?
    • Based on my diagnosis, am I a candidate for surgery?
    • Do I need any more tests before making the treatment plan?
    • Has a sample of my tumour been sent for molecular testing? Am I a candidate for targeted therapy?
    • Has a sample of my tumour been sent for PD-L1 testing? Am I a candidate for immunotherapy?
    • Is there anything I can do, such as changing my diet, exercising, or managing stress, to help prepare for treatment?
    • What symptoms should I expect with this type of cancer? What can I do to manage them?
    • What should I do if my symptoms get worse or if I develop new symptoms?
    • Is this type of cancer hereditary? Is my family at risk?

    Hope this helps.