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lung nodules hard to biopsy

ksdehn30
Posts: 33
Joined: Oct 2008

Hello- I have posted before....long story but my mom has 5 lung noduesl the largest being 1.6 cm.  We have done one CT guided biopsy which came back benign. They want to do another one.  Apparently she is not a candidate for the biopsy you go down the throat due to the location of the nodules.  She has been through so much recently and is hesitant to rush into another biopsy....(endometrial cancer-major surgery) (two time breast cancer survivor 1989 and 1996). They think this could be metastatic breast cancer to lungs from 19 years ago as the endometrial cancer was staged 1a.  Has anyone else had trouble getting a good sample for biopsy?  Is a PET scan worth a try...problem is it wouldn't tell us if this is endometrial cancer or breast cancer in the lungs but it could verify whether this is cancer at all.  My mom is asymptomatic in the lungs...Any help would be great!

 

EllenP
Posts: 1
Joined: May 2016

Im not going to be much help, but I am goingin for Biopsy #2 on Wednesday. Biopsy #1 was 10 months ago. It was inconclusive. I only have one tumor, 9 mm in size now, 8 mm in size when first discovered a year ago. They had me watch and wait for six months, then gave me a special PET/CT scan to see if they could detect hormonal emissions. I probably do have a rare cancer called neuroendocrine carcinoid, which 80 percent of the time secretes these hormones, but my tumor is not doing so. I'm pretty sure just because it's so small. So I hope the new biopsy shows something, and they will go in and take this whole tumor out and I will be OK. But on the other hand, not looking forward to lung surgery, so would prefer an absolute negative. Anything but "inconclusive" though. That special scan was PET/CT and it was PET/CT scan #2, although the first one May 4 of last year used a different substance injected into me. That's where they found the lung nodule. I have high calcium in my blood and they were trying to figure out why. They still haven't figured out why, it apparently isn't the malfunctioning parathyroid glands 99.9 percent of people with hypercalcemia have. But now they can't figure out what's what with the lung nodule. And this is UCLA, supposed to be one of the best cancer treatment facilities in the United States. I'm kind of torn between trying to find if going outside southern California, or maybe just to Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles, I would get a better answer, and just letting UCLA eventually figure this out. But I guess I start with Wednesday's biopsy and go from there. I hope your Mom's doctors figure out what's best for her, but know that you have a new friend here who doesn't have good answers but understands what your Mom is going through.

ksdehn30
Posts: 33
Joined: Oct 2008

hi. How did your biopsy go?  Thinking of you and hoping for good news!!!

ksdehn30
Posts: 33
Joined: Oct 2008

i really appreciate your response. Our pulmonologist said the lungs are hard to biopsy. Harder than the brain. So I guess our situations are not unusual. Praying you get definitive benign results!!!!!  Stay in touch!

dennycee
Posts: 836
Joined: Mar 2011

A PET scan only records metabolic activity and can only suggest that it is suspicious for a malignancy. Only a biopsy can tell if its cancer or not.  After 5 years with no progression the presumption SHOULD be that it is a new primary.  Please consider having the second biopsy done at an National Cancer Institute designated center of excellence.  

maxxy
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2015

Hi. I had first biopsy at Johns Hopkins. They said it didn't give them enough information. I had to go back for a second biopsy. As it turned out the first one didn't work because the tumor was so large that they didn't get past all the dead cells. The second biopsy gave them all the information they needed to do surgery. After surgery I did chemo. That was 3 years ago and no sign of recurrence. I'm so glad I followed through even though it was very stressful. 

I hope this helps. Good luck to your mom!!

dennycee
Posts: 836
Joined: Mar 2011

Here's a link to help locate the NCCN affilliated center if excellence closer to you. 

http://www.cancer.gov/research/nci-role/cancer-centers/find

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