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non small cell lung cancer

Glenda N.
Posts: 13
Joined: Jun 2009

In July 2007 I had surgery to remove my entire left lung, due to non small cell lung cancer. I was fortunate that it had not spread & did not have to have chemo, etc. In December 2008 I was in the hospital for an entirely different illness. At that time they did a chest xray & ct scan & said I had cancer in my right lung. I was devastated to say the least. They were not able to do a biopsy due to its location. In Febuary I had surgery in order to determine if it was cancer. It was not cancer, was scar tissue & inflammation. Needless to say I was so
relieved. After over 2 years I am still cancer free. My oncologist runs tests regularly in order to catch it early in case it returns. I am telling my story in hopes it may help someone else. Don't ever give up until they verify whether it is cancer or not. My regular doctor & radiologist told me that it definitely was cancer. After seeing my oncologist I was told that they could not be sure until a biopsy could be done.

kathrynlib
Posts: 8
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi,
Would you please tell me how a biop on lung is done. How painful it is and what the time in hospital is? I hope you doing well. Thank you so much. Kathrynlib

Glenda N.
Posts: 13
Joined: Jun 2009

If the spot is accessible for a bronchoscopy, they put you to sleep & go down through your nose & are able to take a small piece & they had someone there in the operating room to test it & could tell if it was cancer & also what kind. Mine was adenocarcanoma. That is what they did in 2006 on my left lung. In February 2008 they did some test that told them that they couldn't reach it by doing a bronoscopy, so they had to do surgery. They made an incision on the right side of my back & went in laparoscopically & used a camera & took a piece to biopsy.
A bronchoscopy is not painful at all. My last surgery was not as complicated, & recovery time was much less than when the left lung was removed.
Hope this answers your question.

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

An alternative, if the suspect node is positioned just so, is a needle biopsy. In this case, at least in MY case, a CT scan is used to isolate the node, and while you are still there on the CT table, they try to inject the needle. In MY case, a rib was in the way, so I can't tell you much more than that. But this is another viable option for some.

Take care,

Joe

MadelynJoe's picture
MadelynJoe
Posts: 96
Joined: Sep 2003

Hi Kathryn: I am a 4.5 year nsclc survivor. I had a lung biopsy 2 years ago and it turned out to be just a calcification. I was petrified at the thought of someone having a go at my lung with a needle to say the least! Believe me, it sounds far worse that it actually is. They numb the area to be biopsied so the pain is not bad, it's just that the whole idea of sort of freaks you out beforehand.

Best regards,

Madelyn

annie60
Posts: 56
Joined: Feb 2010

tell me how did you cope for 4/1/2 years what did you do to remain strong ?

cajourney1
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 2009

As others have commented Lung biopsy can be done a few ways. Some more invasive than others. Needle aspiration biopsy is the least invasive. Done under local using a CT scanner to guide the needle. I had this done. Maintaining the postion was the most uncomfortable part. I was luckly they got the tissue without actually having to touch my lung tissue. My cancer is outside my lung.
If they have to go in to get the tissue. You will go under a general. The will put down a scope through you mouth, down the windpipe, into the lung with a camera and remove tissue. If they need to check the lymph nodes of the lung, they will do an incision in the neck and run a catheter down and take lymph tissue. Hope you can have the needle biopsy it is the least invasive. I went home the hours after my was done. The risk is collapsing the lung. They check you by x-ray right after the biopsy, keep you on bed rest and re x-ray about 2-3 hours later. If the lung collapes they put in chest tube and you stay in hospital until lung reinflates. Not pleasant but in the greater sceam of things, there are worse things medicine can do to us.
Hope this helps and doesn't scare you too much.

JR101
Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2010

I had a needle biopsy to determine the type of tumor I had in the right lung. I was an outpatient and was given a general anesthetic. I did not feel anything--it took a couple of hours and it was done in conjuction with a CAT scan in Philadelphia--Jefferson Hospital.

Marcie7
Posts: 15
Joined: Jan 2010

I also had a needle biopsy. It wasnt painful but I did have some discomfort for a few days afterward.I was real scared at fiest but everything turned out ok.

carolekona
Posts: 1
Joined: Jan 2010

Aloha Glenda

I agree never let the cancer run your life I am not the one with cancer easy for me to say, my husband has, "had" stage 3a non small lung cancer he had a tumor about 3cm in his right lung, he had the top right lope removed but the cancer did travel to the lymph nodes, today 8 months later you can say, he is in remission. I am curious with your case, would you mind sharing with me the size of the tumor in your lung.
Carole

Glenda N.
Posts: 13
Joined: Jun 2009

My tumor measured 4x5cm. It was partially in my upper and lower lobe of my left lung.
That is why they had to remove my entire left lung. It has been 2 1/2 years since my
surgery, and haven't had any signs of cancer since. My oncologist did ct scans, or
chest x-rays every 3 months. I just recently went to every 6 months now. I also had an MRI
done every 6 months, due to lung cancer possibly going to the brain. I never had any chemo or radiation, since it had not spread. Hope your husband does well. Thank goodness he is
in remission now. Having tests done on a regular basis, I believe, is very important.
If you have any further questions, I will be glad to share.
I previously had said my surgery was in 2006, it actually was done on
July 31, 2007.

marijune
Posts: 45
Joined: Jan 2010

carolekona,
since your husbands had the top lode of his lung removed would that be called cured or in remission. I am confused. I thought if the tumor was removed the person no longer had cancer.

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

The post of the person you are responding to indicates that the cancer spread to lymph nodes and that is probably the reason why the term 'remission' is used.

"Cured" is certainly a benchmark worth shooting for, but for many of us who have had cancer the best we can get from our doctors is "maintenance" or "remission" or, better yet, "No Evidence of Disease" (NED). My own doctors have typically used the latter, and I have been happy enough with that, but at my next to last visit I was advised that I was "one lucky man" which I interpreted as doctor-speak for "cured".

Nonetheless, I am aware that once cancer has reared its ugly head, the reasons for its existence, be they genetic or environmental or behavioral, are likely to cause its recurrence unless I change the things I can control to some degree, my environment and my behavior, a fancy way of saying that if I live in Chernobyl, smoke profusely and drink alcohol with the same devotion, I should probably move at the same time I give up the two latter.

Even so, there are no guarantees; at least I have heard of none worth pursuing.

Take care,

Joe

annie60
Posts: 56
Joined: Feb 2010

glenda N e mails do not go through to you are you still a member ?

Glenda N.
Posts: 13
Joined: Jun 2009

Yes, I am still a member. Just haven't been on in a while.

annie60
Posts: 56
Joined: Feb 2010

I am always looking for remarks by you as your story gives me hope. Keep writing

aykt36
Posts: 28
Joined: Jun 2010

thanks

Den Ohio's picture
Den Ohio
Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2017

I am currently residing in the Hope Lodge in Cleveland Ohio being treated for this illness that has stolen all my smiles and all my joy. I have 5 weeks of chemo and radiation, currently in my 3rd week. I live 3 plus hours from the Cleveland Clinic where all the procedures are being done. Hope Lodge has graciously provided us a free room here. The biopsy’s have stolen my voice, the radiation has made eating horrible, the chemo has taken away my energy. I have simply become Cancer.  If and if is a big word somehow folks get thru all this stuff what life may be like? I know my new normal can never be what it was or even close. All I see if I live thru this and add any time is constant doctor visits and monitor my illness. I’d love to just be happy another day in my life. I know everyone’s doing the best they can. The doctors and everyone here are spectacular at what they do. I’m so grateful to have my team. But at the end of the day, I know my life is at high risk, my God seems to have left me, all my joy is gone, I never smile, I’m never happy, I just worry about everybody else going thru this. They want me to see a physcholoist so I guess I’ll go. Not sure what mind altering drug she can give me for hope, my bet is nope. Now I dont fear dying but but I do fear putting myself and everyone through this then dying. I just joined this site  and cancer is new to me so I wish not to offend anyone By saying something inappropriate on here.  I’m angry, I’m hurting, I wrote this mostly for me cause I don’t wanna share with family or friends. I feel like a total failure in all of this!

Katmar's picture
Katmar
Posts: 56
Joined: Apr 2017

Hi Den,

So sorry to hear of your diagnosis. What type and stage are you? there are SO many new therapies out there. Have you been genetically tested for mutations. You may also want to check out the inspire.com site and go to lung cancer. There are many people there than can be of help to you on this journey you did NOT ask for. Wishing you the best.

z's picture
z
Posts: 1413
Joined: May 2009

Hello, I am a 2 time cancer survivor, 1st cancer anal Stage II, had chemo rad in 2009, next lung in 2010 had my lower right lobe surgically removed 1A.  So far so good.

I know how scary it is but there are a lot more options now a days compared to even 5 years ago. 

I hope you will visit the Inspire web site as there are many posters there with lots of experience with tx and long term survivors who treat there cancer as a chronic illness that is manageble. 

If you get some help with your outlook about what your going thru and join others and see how they are managing you will see your not alone.  I reached out wherever I could to others in the same boat.  I still talk to them today.

I wish you the best and I understand the anger and hurt.  Please don't feel like a failure you've never been through this before.  Lori

 

jegan's picture
jegan
Posts: 4
Joined: Oct 2017

Den, I hve stage 4 NSCLC - I know exactly where you are right now. I also went through radiation and chemo that appeared to work well for the massive tumor on my chest. But now, a couple months after I had gone through that, I have to start the same thing with my adrenal glands which have been affected by the cancer. Yeah, hurt, angry, and in pain. Depressed, and ready to snap at a moments notice, even at those I love. But each morning I get up and try to meet the day with as positive attitude as I can put together, and think "This too will pass..." Hang in there brother, you are not alone for sure, and there will be good days, they won't all be bad.  Try to find a group where you are staying to sit and get it all off your chest, it will help. I'm sending prayers, and good vibes your way.

 

Joe

ClaCla
Posts: 137
Joined: Jul 2017

Den, while you're staying at the Hope Lodge, are there any classes or sessions you could attend to help with the emotional aspect and stress?  You definitely do not want to identify with the cancer as being you, although I realize you are just expressing feelings.  Your identity is the healthy and vibrant you.   It will serve you better NOT to own cancer -- for example it's "cancer" or "the cancer" but not "my cancer."  You're going through so much right now, so your post wqs a good start.  But you might start a new discussion with your story (i.e. what type of lung cancer etc.).  This particular discussion thread goes back years.

I just finished six weeks of chemo and radiation, and am focusing on any signs of getting over the side-effects.  There haven't been a lot of side effects for me (I was lucky), but enough that I'm not yet bouncing back as quickly as I'd like.  So I understand how frustrated and frightened you must be feeling.

Best success and God bless.

topwater235
Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2017

2017-11-30  Diagnosed two weeks ago with a very small Adenocarcinoma in the lower Rt. Lung.  Went to MDAnderson in Houston Tuesday. The Pet/Ca barely showed any die uptake. The recommend no Chmo butr do Radiation. Size of tumer is 4 cm . I told them I would like to try supplements and they were plesant about it but I should at least return in 6 mo for radiation if supplements had no positive affects.    Does anyone here know any company that makes supplements for cancer ?

Thank you

Max.......I know, I am confused.

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