Small trial suggests the scans might help, but experts aren't so sure
by Applebottom on Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:00 AM
A few months ago I went in hospital with chest pain, was discharged and the next evening my PCP called me at home to tell me that I needed to follow up with a CT of my chest because its showed opacity on area Right apex of chest.. After results of CT they recommended Pet Scan which I had 2/14/2009. It took a week before I got those results. I then discussed it with my PCP and he said he thought it was benign but wanted me to see Thoracic surgeon. I asked him why if he thought it was benign, he said he wanted his opinion and he could follow me.I was flying out the next week for mu stepdaughters wedding in San Diego so I figured I would follow up when I got home.I called last week and got an appoint for yesterday, 3/9/2009.
I have been a RN for 35 years and know many of the Doctors very well including the surgeon I was about to see.When he entered the room he was very serious and I asked him what was wrong? He proceeded to grill me with lots of questions and one of the reasons I was concerned before I any of this happened was I had been losing a lot of weight. I'm not a big person to begin with and many people had made comments about the weight loss. I did smoke years ago maybe a pack lasting 3-4 days but quit 22 yrs ago. I had been in MVA, rear ended in August and have been having Physical therapy since then. I used to work out more frequently and because of this I have loss a lot of muscle weight. I had also been dealing with my Mom who has Alzheimers an partly attributed weight loss due to that. I still work in ER as well as Out Patient Surgery dept. When we were moving my Mom to assisted living I noticed I had a slight wheeze which was odd, never had any lung issuses. It happened maybe once or twice more, only lasting for a short time. So I discussed all of this with him and he said he wanted me to have a lung biopsey in Special Procedures. I am familiar with the protocol because I worked in this dept for 5 years.
So my question is has anyone ever had an slight abnormal pet scan and then had biopsy which showed no cancer? The surgeon said it very small, 2cm in size and it's up against the chest wall. I most likely will have the biopsy tomorrow on 3/11/2009. I don't know if the Doctors are being overly cautious and just want to make sure or I really need to be concerned? We are suppose to fly out next month to Virginia for my Stepsons wedding.There are so many things to consider if it is positive. I just don't know enough about Pet Scans if they can show false positive readings?
Thanks for listening,
by annb64 on Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:00 AM
I hope everything turns out okay for you on the biopsy. When I had my PET scan (after months of not being able to shake a cough and several chest xrays and CT scans), the thoracic surgeon explained my PET results to me in this way: there are results that are definitive for cancer, results that are definitive non cancer and then some results in the middle where they just aren't sure. Mine were in that iffy category. So, I had the biopsy. I found out I had lung cancer. As a lifelong non smoker and someone who has never lived with a smoker, it was quite a shock, something we didn't expect. I am receiving treatment and things are going well. Before the surgery, I asked what could the other options be if not cancer, and I was told possibly sarcoidosis (the illness that Bernie Mac had) or other imflammations that might resolve itself over time. I pray for you that you are not dx with cancer and it is something less serious and easily treated.
by jaspito on Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:00 AM
Elaine -- I'm glad you are having the biopsy. If it is cancer, 2 cm is really small and, hopefully, can be excised without having to do radiation and chemo. Mine was 4.6 cm and inoperable. Consider yourself lucky that it's that small. I suspect you'll be around for many years taking care of people in the ER.
by Applebottom on Mon Mar 16, 2009 12:00 AM
On 3/12/2009 jaspito wrote:Elaine -- I'm glad you are having the biopsy. If it is cancer, 2 cm is really small and, hopefully, can be excised without having to do radiation and chemo. Mine was 4.6 cm and inoperable. Consider yourself lucky that it's that small. I suspect you'll be around for many years taking care of people in the ER.Sharon
Thanks for your reply. I'm still waiting for official news, spoke to pathologist on Friday the 13th, unofficial report is there are suspicious cells found, had to do another cut of the specimen they said on Monday which is today. Again spoke to pathologist said again abnormal suspicious cells for cancer not enough to make diagnosis. Most likely will have to repeat the biopsy. The biopsy pass was made right upper posterior lung. They said if they had to repeat may have to go anterior which will be more difficult to obtain.
I'm sorry to hear about yours, when were you diagnosed? How are you being treated and where? Keep me posted. You will be in my prayers.
by Applebottom on Tue Mar 17, 2009 12:00 AM
Thanks for your reply. I'm so sorry to hear of your news but glad you are doing well. I don't have my official biopsy results but when I spoke to the pathologists on Friday the 13th they said cells looked suspicious and they needed to do another cut of spec on Monday 16th. Today's news is about the same except I may need to repeat the biopsy for more tissue of the tumor he said. Not sounding too good. Again although I smoked years ago. I haven't in 22 years.Mine was actually found by accident on a routine chest Xray, they didn't even have one to compare it to because I can't remember the last time I had one. Maybe 10 years ago at one of those radiology offices. I hope to find out tomorrow. I really don't have any symptoms except the weight loss, I did gain some of it back, the worse is extreme fatigue which may or may not be related to everything that is going on.I will keep you posted
Thanks again, you'll be in my prayers,
by trehouse60 on Tue Mar 17, 2009 12:00 AM
I'm hoping that you will consider taking some nutritionally proactive steps while you are waiting for your biopsy results. I've done a lot of research on natural treatment of cancer, both as adjunctive therapy and alternative therapy. There are some supplements that seem to be really important for both beating cancer and preventing cancer.
Selenium is an extremely important mineral - our bodies use it in every single cellular process, but the overwhelming evidence is that very few people get enough selenium in their diet these days. A selenium supplement, starting with a little bit of a booster of 400mcg/day for two weeks, and then reducing to 200mcg/day could really give you a lot of benefit. Other minerals that seem to be especially important in combination with selenium are zinc 50 mg/day (you could start with 100 mg/day for the same two week period then cut back), magnesium: 200 - 250 mg/day (350 mg/day max),manganese: 10 - 15 mg/day, and calcium: 1200 mg/day. I'm sure as a nurse you know that these minerals can be hard on the stomach, so make sure to take them with food.
While many of the leading experts recommend the above supplementary cocktail, they also talk a lot about vitamin D3, which has been getting a lot of very positive reporting for treatment of cancer. We seriously need Vitamin D-3 to be able to absorb and utilize calcium. Our bodies manufacture D-3 if we get adequate sunlight (15 - 20 minutes exposure/day) - but I do not believe in leaving this to chance, so also recommend adding a Vitamin D-3 supplement, 1000 - 2000 iu/day (10,000 iu/day max) to the mix.
Of course these six nutrients are just the tip of the iceberg as concerns nutrients that work to fight cancer and boost the immune system, as well as provide calories and blood/tissue builders. Eating as many raw fruits and vegetables as possible (organic if you can get them) might be a big help. Foods that contain acetic and citric acid are especially good for tearing into aberrant cells. Berries and grapes (red, black or purple, with the seeds if you can get them) and tomatoes are super fruits for this purpose. Fruits to avoid are bananas, grapefruit, pomegranate, limit to one apple a day - even though they are acetic acid rich, they are also pretty high in sugar. Veggies to limit are carrots and sweet potatoes/yams - again, pretty high sugar content. Broccoli, spinach, kale, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts, asparagus, beets - all these are super foods action packed with antioxidants and meganutrients.
Of course, try to drink as much pure fresh water as you can, both for detoxification and hydration. I use steam distilled water - reverse osmosis filtered water is also an excellent choice, as both types are much more toxin free than most bottled waters.
A lot of people have started taking lypospheric vitamin C for both cancer prevention and treatment. It's expensive, but much more action packed than plain ascorbic acid and the other vitamin C preparations.
If you're like me when I was in nursing, I didn't pay enough attention to personal nutrition as I should have, and I didn't emphasize it any where near enough to my patients. I was kind of rusty on the subject when I decided to research and pursue my own natural anti-cancer regimen (after being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in my lungs and not being able to take the anti-estrogen drugs.) With research I discovered that green tea and cruciferous veggies are a good start, but there's a tremendous wealth of natural remedies just waiting for us to discover them, so I started a blog late last summer to give people a place where they could read about simple basic applications of nutrition, herbs, supplements, botanicals, and some intangibles like laughter and attitude for preventing and treating illness. It's not any super-duper site - the articles are intended for laymen to be able to read and understand them without wading thru a lot of medical techno-mumbo-jumbo, but I have tried to present really informative posts. You are welcome to look at the blog if you feel you would like to catch up on basic foods and supplements that may help with cancer, find a few recipes, and take a look at what I did to put my metastasis into remission naturally. (Not saying my regimen is a cure for everybody - just an example of simple and inexpensive things that people can do to help themselves kick the beast in the behind!)
Please let us know when you get your biopsy report. If it's good news we will all be glad to dance the happy dance with you. If not such good news, we will be here to support you as you embrace this new challenge in your life.
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