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Don't Worry Be Happy?

Posts: 4
Joined: Sep 2006

Apr.06 on the x-ray, the doc noticed a nodule. CT scan confirmed that (there is 1.4cm nodule in my right lung)
PET-scan said that they didnt find a cancer-like metabolism... that means its NOT cancerous?
I repeated the CT-scan after 4 month and the results were the same(1.4cm nodule)
What should I do next???
Leave it and forget it and maybe in a year repeat the CT-scan?
Can I be sure that this is not cancer?
After x-ray, CT, PET?

Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2006

As I know that you should do a Biopsi to know the type of the nodule!!
But the CT-Scan and Pet-Scan shows if there are other nodules or which Stad ????
So dont be late to do the biopsi!!
So I wish you good luck!!!
And hope that it is not cancer as you said!!

Plymouthean's picture
Posts: 264
Joined: Jan 2004

Your nodule is probably benign, based on what your doctor told you. For a good explanation of nodules, go to http://www.pulmonologychannel.com/spn/ . Good luck.

Posts: 156
Joined: Aug 2006

A biopsy is the definitive test to check if a mass is malignant cancer or not. A PET scan only shows the "hot spots" while a CT scan is even less precise. Our thoracic surgeon said that though the PET and CT scan aren't absolute, he knew with more than a 90% certainty the hot spots and lesions were cancerous. He would know definitely with a biopsy. You may wish to have a doctor take a biopsy from a bronchoscopy, if the nodule is accessible via that non-invasive procedure.

I hope your nodule is benign.

Posts: 30
Joined: Jan 2006

I had a .9cm nodule that they tracked for almost three years before they decided it needed a biopsy. Positive for cancer- had right upper lung removed and 4 rounds of chemo. Fortunately it had not spread that we know of. By the way the PET was negative. My advice, get a biopsy. ASAP. There are 4 options each has its pluses and minuses
1 needle biopsy
2 bronchoscopy
3 vats
4 wedge resection
You might also get another opinion of the CT. The border of the nodule can be descriptive and if read by an "expert" (Sloane Kettering or MD Anderson) they might be able to give furthur advice.
At the very least I would get a CT every 3 months. Because if it is cancer the best chance you have of beating it is to have it removed as soon as possible.

Hope it works out and it is bengn.

Posts: 4
Joined: Sep 2006

Did your nodule grow for 3y time?
Did y ou have any symptoms?

Posts: 30
Joined: Jan 2006

It never got bigger but it did change shape.
I never had any symptoms.

Posts: 4
Joined: Sep 2006

Who is usually telling you that you have a cancer?
family doc
Right now there is just I 1001 different tests and my family doc and nobody knows what's going on.I dont know where to go or what to do:((
because im not a doctor:((
What about you? Who send u where and who did(ordered) all tests?
(actually im scared like never before)

Thank you for caring so much!

Posts: 1048
Joined: Aug 2006

I'm no doctor, but I've just been through the same path (nodule found on the lung)and I've met friends that have had different outcomes after starting with a unknown nodule. Mine showed up on an xray ordered by the family practice doctor I see. It was taken to see if I had pneumonia after a longstanding bout with a sinus infection and bronchitus (like over two months of feeling sick). The xray didn't turn up pneumonia, but there was a 1 cm. spot and I had a previous history of breast cancer so the radiologist ( doctor your life depends on and you never ever see) sent out the red flags that further tests were needed and that led to a CAT scan. I'm not shy about asking questions and I often ask the folks doing the CAT scans what THEY think it could be if it isn't cancer. I also looked on the internet and talked to my friends to find out what other possibilities there were. Part of it was that I like to be ready for whatever the doctor might find, but part of it of course was just denial in action that I might have stage 4 you know what. Anyhow, one lucky friend found on surgical biopsy that the "spot" on his lung that hadn't healed was nothing more than dried mucus from a really bad cold. A doctor told me about a women with my history that found out after biopsy that she had tuberculosis, not cancer. Serious but treatable and curable. Sometimes it is a totally different disease. Some diseases causing nodules are benign (as in not cancer) and not terribly life-threatening. Others are benign, untreatable, and very life threatening. After awhile, I wasn't sure I wanted to read more on lung disease!!! But the folks doing the CAT scans, some nurses I know, and my sister who happens to be a family practice doctor pointed out that the usual course of treatment is to do repeat CAT scans and see if anything changes. If the nodule does not change, it is probably not cancer and they will just keep an eye on it (this means periodic CAT scans, which are more sensitive than 2 dimensional xrays to changes in the nodule's shape and size). They usually start with one every 3 months for awhile, then every 6 months, then once a year, and then discontinue them if nothing is happening. If the nodule does change shape, multiply in number, or grow, then it is time to get a piece of it under a microscope and let the pathologist(another doctor you never see that your life depends on!)find out what it is. You want to get to the best lung surgeon you can get to for the biopsy. Those who do the most surgery can get the best results and the shortest recovery time. A lung surgeon is called a thoracic surgeon. They perform all the different biopsies mentioned in the earlier thread. They are the ones that can tell you what is best for your particular spot. I had been to a large university hospital for breast cancer treatment and quickly got a refer from my doctors there to go back for the lung nodule. I wanted the thoracic surgeon, not a general surgeon. Where the spot is, what your health is, and what training the surgeon has determines the choices. For example, my spot was in the middle of the middle of my right lung. It was too far into the middle for the needle biopsy and a little too far down for the bronchioscopy to reach well. My surgeon was well experienced in the VATS procedure (he does several a day three days a week). I passed the pulmonary lung function tests so any procedure up to the removal of one lung was tolerable without significant loss of function. The surgeon refused to do anything to damage my ability to continue with daily activites, though he did say something about not planning any marathons in the near future. Like at 49 and a history of being a stationary bookworm I was going to try! He was able to do a wedge biopsy through three one inch cuts. I spent from the morning of July 14th to the morning of July 16th in the hospital. The first day I was bedbound on IV pain meds but by the 16th I was crusing around the halls well. I was stiff but able to eat out on the way home. Two and a half weeks later I could jog slowly one the"straights" and walk the "curves" for a mile around the high school track (I'm trying not to be such a couch potato in my middle years). If I had had traditional surgery with the general surgeon, the biopsy results would be the same but it would have required bigger cuts and much longer recovery time. My thoracic surgeon kind of took care of explaining the path reports to me after the operation. Mind you, I ALWAYS get a copy of the path reports and radiology reports and read them till I understand every word. After all, it's my body they are working on. My family practice doctor was helpful in getting referrals if I needed them, taking out stitches if I needed that, and even getting pain meds for me if I couldn't get back to the hospital (100 miles down the road). And my outcome: stage 1-A lung cancer curable by one surgery two weeks later. Go for what tests you need when they tell you to go. You won't be any sicker if they find cancer than you are now. You will just know what it is and be able to plan what to do from the position of knowledge. Good luck!

Posts: 4
Joined: Sep 2006

Thank u so very much:)

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