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Cancer Free and Still Scared

Posts: 6
Joined: Mar 2010

How and when did you learn about your cancer?
I was diagnosed with NSCLC in Jan 2009, after being told for 3 yrs that it was scar tissue on my left lung. The CT Scan showed a change, followed by a
PET scan that confirmed cancer.

What types of treatment(s) have occurred?
I had an upper lobectomy on my left lung in January and the drs, said there was no spread and no need for radiation or chemo. I was told it may never come back but I am scared to death. I smoked for 36 yrs and have a strong family history of cancer. I have lost so many in my family tocancer of different types, it is hard to imagine that it is not spreading. I am having a lot of trouble eating because it causes my stomach to hurt. I mentiom this to the dr. but he didn't seem worried about it. I would like to know if any of the other pts that have had a upper lobectomy have had a lot of trouble with their stomach. Also can anyone actually tell me what type of survival rates are with this type of cancer if it had not spread.

What have been the most important things that have helped you through your survivorship?
The only thing that kept me going through this nightmare was the fight for life that my brother was waging against neck and head cancer. We lost him 3 weeks ago and now I am struggling to recover from the after effects of this loss and effets of surgery , such as the difficulty eating. I am espcially bothered when people treat me like I am marked for death. I just know that faith is the only thing that keeps me sane.

catcon49's picture
Posts: 398
Joined: Aug 2008

I had Stage 1a no lymphnode or mets. dx in july 2008. I had no chemo, drs and oncology say I have anywhere from 85 to 95% 5 year survival rate. After 5 years it levels off. I smoked for 33 years ( I quit for 6) and strong family history of cancer. My surgeon told me I have 85 to 90 % that in 5 years I will still be NED. The thing that surprised me was the oncologist I spoke with said she would go as far as 95% survival rate. I asked about after 5 years, I was told it would level off after that, but I would always have to be checked.

The things that keep me going are FAITH FAMILy PRAYER FAITH FAMILY PRAYER, and my wonderful doctors and THIS WEBSITE. There are so many people here who are going through much worse than we are. I just think if they have the strenght to endure so can we..

I also get the people who look at me like I am dying. But, I don't think people do it to be mean, I think they don't realize how far we have come in Cancer research. Maybe not curing it, in some cases, but definitely waging large scale battles againist it. I think people need to see more survivors of lung cancer. This way they know it is not always a losing battle.

Stay sane and know you will be in my prayers. God Bless

Posts: 6
Joined: Mar 2010

Thank you so much for answering my post at least now I feel like I'm not the only one in the world who has been scared to death. My fear is mostly because of the former smoking and the strong family history of cancer. I have buried half of my sibling from different forms of cancer,so it definitely scares me. Please stay in touch, so I will at least know there is someone on the pther end of this line.

Posts: 50
Joined: Dec 2009

I had the same thing, Stage 1a, BAC nsclc adenocarcinoma, upper left lobectomy 7 weeks ago today. I was told the same thing, somewhere around 90% suvivial after 5 years of clean scans. I am scared too. Everyone thinks ok, they got it, get over it, so these boards are where I "let it all out". You are not alone, ncpiddle, not by far! I, too, smoked for somewhere around 30 years and lots of aunts and uncles who died from a menu of cancers. Lost my mom to lung cancer that mets to brain 8 years ago (she did NOT smoke!). I cling to those herein that have made it past year 2, 3, 4, and beyond. Before I talked to the doctors right after surgery, I did not know that anyone could survive lung cancer - I thought it was a game over event. Feel free to vent to me anytime you want. The Good Lord knows there have been some wonderful people here who have listened to me, although most days I tend to just stay in my world and think, not always a good thing, but there it is!

Posts: 17
Joined: Apr 2010

I am short on time but I am with You and will pray for you as I pray for myself. I have sclc that has just been found in my brain. I go to the doc tommarrow. If I dont get back to you soon dont worry . I have been told that I might get sick for a week or two. I will prAY FOR YOU AS i PRAY FOR MYSELF. TILL THEN

Glenda N.
Posts: 13
Joined: Jun 2009

I had my entire left lung removed in July 2007. Had not spread, had no chemo or radiation. I will soon celebrate 3 yrs of being cancer free. Have had a couple of scares, but turned out to not be cancer. I too came from a large family with a lot of cancer. I also smoked for many years, quit the day I was told it was definitely cancer & would soon have the surgery to remove my lung. I was told if I could make it 5 years, then I could consider myself cured. I don't think I could ever consider myself being cured. Once you have had cancer it is hard to get to confident. I am the 3rd one in my family to have lung cancer. I lost 2 siblings from lung cancer(age 73 & 83) and lost one from leukimia at the age of 66. The best advice I can give is to find you a oncologist that will run ct scans & pet scans often. If it can be caught early, then they have better luck in controlling it.

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