In 2020 I had left lower lobectomy for a single nodule 17 mm x11 mm with diagnosis of Invasive mucinous adenocarcinoma. No lymph or pleural involvement but STAS was present according to pathology report. Subsequent scans have shown a very small nodule in upper left lobe which is “slightly more conspicuous”. My surgeon has ordered Ct with contrast for my next scan in December. I had a repeat VATS two weeks after the first surgery due to a rather large hemothorax 1.8 liters and had a transfusion. I’m wondering, of course, what the CT with contrast will be able to clarify and also have heard that major pulmonary complications with transfusions post lobectomy can somehow increase the incidence of recurrence. It’s getting close to scan time and it’s always in the back of mind. Sigh.
Reply # - October 26, 2022, 12:22 PM
Hi Scub Oak, it's good to see you.
It's doubtful that complications on their own cause recurrence and more likely that cancer that already exists creates opportunities for complications. But complications happen all the time on their own without the help of cancer. I hate the uncertainty this all brings and can only imagine the extra stress added.
You would need to ask your onc about their reasoning behind adding contrast to the CT but it's pretty typical to use it to get the best picture of something that's not obvious. CTs even with contrast have a difficult time differentiating between scar tissue and nodules. Your onc can tell you that they see things on CTs all the time that look and quack like cancer but aren't. I'm sorry there aren't answers to these questions other than time will tell. It's not very comforting.
On a personal note, my husband had at least one nodule (probably a large infection) that was almost certainly cancer according to scans that wasn't, and scar tissue that became inflamed that looked like cancer progressing that is now 10 years later seen as scar tissue. So yes, I can imagine your oncologist wanting a better look at your lungs.
I hope all goes well according to your plans. Please keep us posted and as always let us know of questions you have.
All the very best,
I joined GRACE as a caregiver for my husband who had a Pancoast tumor, NSCLC stage III in 2009. He had curative chemo/rads then it was believed he had a recurrence in the spine/oligometastasis that was radiated. He's 10 years out from treatment.
Reply # - October 26, 2022, 07:55 PM
Thank you, Janine. It feels better to just get the questions out. The answers sometimes are less important than the questions.