FreeBird's Journey:

Caregiver: Lung Cancer > Non-Small Cell > Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: over 12 years ago, Male, Stage IIB

  1. 1
    • FreeBird
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    almost 10 years ago
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    I just want to quickly add a summary of the major points of the past lung cancer experience with my dad, from what I can recall, in case it can help someone. He had a little extra trouble with his breathing. So he saw his doctor. Doctor sent him to a pulmonologist. Doctor ordered a chest x-ray. X-ray showed a spot on the lung. CT and PET scans were done. Doctors determined it was lung cancer, non-small-cell, and later that it had spread to the local lymph nodes. Stage IIb Between the diagnosis and the surgery, dad went to the hospital with pneumonia. After recovery from that, we went to a thoracic surgeon who moved very quickly to cut the cancer out, after approval from a cardiologist. They removed a lobe from one lung, as well as surrounding lymph nodes. They put in a temporary chest drain tube, connected to a container on the floor with measurements for how much fluid drained out each day. He had a controlled morphine IV for the pain, and he was in intensive care for a while due to some difficulties. The oncologist met him in the hospital to discuss what happens next-- adjuvant chemotherapy with Carboplatin and Taxol, with a shot of Neulasta to help with the white blood cell count. This combination of surgery and adjuvant chemo worked well, with no recurrence. It took months to really bounce back from the surgery. After that, it seemed like he was in great shape, all things considered. At that point, he made countless trips to the general practitioner, pulmonologist, cardiologist, oncologist, and the thoracic surgeon, outpatient tests, labwork, hospital, pharmacy. Cancer is expensive and time-consuming. Every few months there were follow-up scans to check for recurrence. Without all those trips, the early detection, fast diagnosis, treatment at the earliest possible time by people who really knew what they were doing, nurses, and follow-up, my dad would not have lived the past two good years between cancers.