Sunday, October 07, 2007

Symptoms of Concern

I have just been trying to recall when this lung cancer began.
In 2004 I had a bad cough.I coughed for hours and days and weeks.I remember not able to catch my breath in between the gasps.I was diagnosed with pneumonia and given antibiotics.The rest of that year and into 2005,I believe I wasn't coughing anymore,or at least not like that.In October of 2005,I was sent to a heart specialist,as an EKG test showed an irregularity in the graph.He was a good doctor and obviously had saved my life.He believed that the result might not have been a heart attack.He knew that a problem with the lung could also show up as that.He ordered a chest x-ray.He said that the x-ray showed two spots,but that one spot was pneumonia and that we would wait until my pneumonia was over to do a follow up CT scan.
The scan was done on January 30th 2006.My doctor called me in the next day and told me to see this doctor,and with tears in his eyes he wished me the best.I saw a surgeon on February the 15th.He was to the point in about 5 minutes and surgery was arranged for the 28th of February.Not much time to think ,and also nothing to think about.It was a do or die situation.
I sit here 20 months later and have NO Regrets.
I was one of the few fortunate ones to be able to have the option of surgery.I was diagnosed early enough.
I know I did this to myself.
I smoked a pack of smokes a day for 43 years.I just believed it wouldn't happen to me.
I had been told I had emphysema a long time before.In 1993 I was given a spray,but I never really used it.
They did find I have emphysema,when they did the pathology on my lung tissue.
My breathing is decreased in capacity but I am still not on oxygen.
I see my surgeon every four months as always and will continue to see him for another year .Every time I go for an appointment,that is the worst of all, then after when he says the cancer has not returned ,That is the Best.

I have been having a lot of breathlessness lately.I have a lot of pain in my back by my lungs.I can usually relieve the discomfort with heat applications.

My coughing came back about two weeks ago,and it really scares me.When I breathe,it sounds "metallic'.The doctor found that I was congested,but pneumonia is so far ruled out.

If I was to get pneumonia ,with the lung cancer,and lung reduction,and emphysema,IT would Not be good.

I have been taking it easy lately and avoiding too many public places.

I do not want to make this about me,but wanted to let you know some of the symptoms.

I appreciate your time.




Sylvie said...

Please take care of yourself. I am very happy that you were able to get an early diagnosis. I'll be praying for you, if you don't mind. :)

djpmom said...

Hello, Believe -
I, too, have emphysema and lung cancer, dx about two years ago. I was a heavy smoker - 2 packs a day for 30+ years...but you know what? It is NOT OUR FAULT! Please, don't blame yourself for the cancer, no matter what other people would have you believe. NOT your fault!

I hope you go see your Dr. about those back pains - that was my marker for pneumonia (which I had several times a couple of years ago), though you said it had been ruled out as a reason for coughing.

I'm in a clinical trial and it's working for me, so try not to get discouraged even if it does return - there are still things out there that can fight it. I just read today about some research at MD Anderson that may bring some new drugs soon...

Other resources - the American Cancer Society has a site - ACSCSN - the Cancer Survivors Network - where you can create your own page and join chats, post photos, artwork, etc, its all free.

Best of luck!

Timothy Takemoto said...

By the way, please may I ask, have you given up smoking?

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