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Coughed up chunks of cancer

Posts: 177
Joined: Dec 2009

The second day of chemo last week I coughed up two white chunks about 1/2" long with vains running though them. I had seen some pictures of cancer on google before I started this treatment and it looked like the pictures. I asked my Oncologiest about it and he agreed it was cancer. Must have been in my throught and became disloged from the chemo. Anyway the tumor has shrunk drasticly allready and all the doc's were very happy. Me on the other hand, I had to go to the hospital Thursday to have IV fluids and some meds. I was on the marinol pills and black out walking down the hallway at home. Really freaked out the wife and kids, but I was really dehydrated and the fluids did the job.


Hal61's picture
Posts: 655
Joined: Dec 2009

Hi Brad, better to cough them onto the floor than keep them in your throat, but that would definitely freak me out. Sorry you blacked out, I had dehydration problems that landed me in the hospital overnight at the end of my treatments. I blacked out once at home, by getting up too fast. It took me an hour or so to realize I'd blacked out. The evidence was all around me when I put it together, but I just thought I'd gone to sleep on the floor in an especially awkward position at first. I'd never blacked out before, so I didn't have a frame of reference. I'm glad you got hydrated, and feel better. Keep up the work, you're getting through it.


Glenna M's picture
Glenna M
Posts: 1576
Joined: May 2009

Happy to hear that your tumors have shrunk drastically after only 2 chemo sessions. Coughing up chunks of cancer sounds gross but at least you know the cells are dying.

Sorry to hear about your passing out in front of the wife and kids, I can only imagine how scared they must have been. Hydration is really such an important part of recovery and yet so many of us are guilty of not watching our fluid intake. I'm sure this is a lesson learned though after your experience.

Overall it sounds like you are responding well, keep up the good work but remember to drink, drink, drink :)

Stay strong,

mswijiknyc's picture
Posts: 421
Joined: Oct 2010

After the initial freak out, I probably would have been THAT IS SO FREAKING COOL to the chunks. Another story of kicking butt and taking names :)

Blacking out in front of the family is very scary. My husband had and still fights the dark while he walks. The worst time was when I was over and hour away for work and he texted me that he needed help; he fell and split his head open and doesn't remember doing it. All he remembers is waking up on the bathroom floor then going back to bed and waking up to a pillow full of blood. That was and 11 staples in his head trip.

His nurse gave me the advice of taking your time when you change altitudes - lying to sitting, sitting to standing - and personally I don't let me husband go much of anywhere without me. He doesn't leave the house much anyway, but until the blackouts lessen I'm not taking the chance.

Dehydration, low blood pressure, and low blood sugar all can contribute to dizziness and the big fade. Make sure the fluid intake is up and you're eating as best you can. A tip a friend gave me - keep a sugar sweet drink around to help the dizziness. Orange juice is okay if you can add some sugar to it, but fruit drinks with sugar listed as one of the first ingredients are a bit better.

Lot's of hugs sounds like you're on the right road :)

Hondo's picture
Posts: 6643
Joined: Apr 2009

Brad I heard of this happening before from Dr sabi but I thought he was just telling a story. He said that there was one lady who during treatment cough the complete tumor right up, somehow the treatment dislodged it from her body.

Hope the same happens for you as miracles happen everyday

Posts: 75
Joined: Nov 2010

Hi Brad:

Good luck on coughing up your phlem/ ie ..cancer. You will get a lot of that ...first it was mucous that ran out of my mouth at night and got thicker and thicker to now with no saliva but still lots of phlem...in the afternoon..I gargle with club soda and like to have a couple nice cold hand crafted beers during the 5 oclock news before i eat... that clears up the mucous for me..also helps keep me hydrated..been cancer free for almost seven years..but still fight the dehydration problem..Can not say enough about that during your treatment..I spent five different times in the ER from that ...finally ended up getting a bag of fluid in my pic line every day and weekends included.. .But Life is still good...( even dealing with all the side effects) and glad to be here like the rest of us survivors as you will be.. Mel

james chambliss's picture
james chambliss
Posts: 70
Joined: May 2010

Yea, i coughed up 2 chunks and took them to the doctor because they looked weird. I never heard anything else about them. No surprise though. I knew what it was in my heart. I also blacked out, several times. The first time my wife saw it, she called 911. It was a rough spell and sometimes even drinking plenty of water doesn't do the trick. Good luck on your journey, my thoughts and prayers are with you.


dennis318's picture
Posts: 349
Joined: Feb 2010

Samething here, coughed up 2 pieces of porcelin subtance, I didn't say anything, I thought they may had too much rads to the head, if you know what I mean, it was like a small broken chicken bone, and flat....Thanks for voicing..Dennis

adventurebob's picture
Posts: 690
Joined: Jun 2010

Coughing up chunks and passing out sounds like college. I too have coughed up chunks that I knew had to be cancer because they just looked so evil. Right near the start of chemo like you. Nice work Brad. I always get light-headed when my red blood cells and platelets are low. Have you had a CBC lab done since you started chemo? My guess is that your blood counts are low. So happy to hear about the tumor shrinkage. It's working!! You must be very pleased and relieved. Way to stick with it. Happy Holidays.


Pam M's picture
Pam M
Posts: 2196
Joined: Nov 2009

Man, your body is really getting rid of cancer, huh? Great. Very good to hear about he huge amount of shrinkage.

Sorry to hear about the need for hydration. I did find that I had to track my fluid intake during treatment - if not, I tended to think I'd had sufficient water when I hadn't.

Keep up the great progress.

Bigfuzzydoug's picture
Posts: 154
Joined: Jul 2010

... and yet so cool!

I would probably hand them over to the docs for analysis. If they didn't want them for some reason, I might seriously consider burning them in the backyard. Some big pyrotechnic display of war on cancer! ;-)

Greg53's picture
Posts: 848
Joined: Apr 2010


Man, glad to hear the tumor has shrunk so much. Keep up the good work! And I 100% agree with the others about spitting up that chunk - how cool would that be to blow-up/burn/destory that after it came up.


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