Mother diagnosed with Stage III Non-small cell lung cancer

Hello, I am new to this group, but have found the only glimmer of hope I've had in weeks from reading some of the stories posted on here. My Mom (59 yrs old) has just been diagnosed with Non-small cell lung cancer, Stage III. Her and I are VERY, VERY close and I am also pregnant with my second child, and 2 months away from my due date. This news has been devastating to my family, and made my pregnancy very difficult since I am having trouble managing the stress of the possibility of losing my mom. We are a very close family and I don't think any of us have ever thought of life without each other. This morning, after meeting with the oncologist she was so negative that she made me loose hope. I know that is the worst thing to do and that we all need to have hope to be able to fight this. The plan is to start with chemo ASAP (not sure what kind yet as we are still waiting for pathology report from biopsy) and then possible surgery. I was wondering if anyone has any survival stories to share that I can pass on to my family to offer some hope, especially to my mom? Also tips that helped you cope through lung cancer and treatment? Thank you in advance for your help. It is much appreciated.

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Stage III but you don't yet know what type it is? Where is the cancer located? There are many long-term survivors here with stage III and IV, so you've come to a place that will give you back your hope. Having LC is no longer a death sentence, so get positive thoughts back in your head and heart. You need to relax and realize that your Mom can get through this and you need to get through your pregnancy without complications. If you find you don't like her onc, then get another one. Don't look at stats, as they're old and everyone is an individual. Let us know when you find out what the pathology is. Wishing her the best.
Take care, Judy

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i was diagnosed with extensive small cell lung cancer in nov 2011 doctor gave me two weeks to live without chemo and ten months with chemo. its been ten months and im doing great. the cancer had spread to my liver lympnoids bone and chest. i did chemo for 6 months every two weeks three days four hours each day. i am not at work stress is bad for us, eating well and did quit smoking as soon as i found out i was ill. i think positive and ready for the fight of my life and theres been a few lol good luck

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Dear Veness,
As Judy said, there are many people here doing well for years. I hope to join that group myself. I'm going on a year right now.
Stage three is often considered curable. Have they spoken of surgery in addition to chemo? If for some reason surgery is ruled out , ask her Onc about mutation testing to see if she qualifies for a targeted drug like Tarceva or Xalkori. They can be easier to take than chemo.
Keep us posted. The more details you tell us, the more people here can help.

Good luck and keep hoping.

Steve

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Stage IIIB 6+ year survivor. Diagnosed Oct 2006. Chemo and radiation shrunk the tumor. Surgery in Jan 2007 and more chemo. I have been NED (No evidence of disease) since 2007! It can be beat.

Please keep us posted. There are so many kind and knowledgeable people here, like Judy!

Trini

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Sent you a message. We are not too far away and here to help.
Michele

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Thank you guys so much. I am not sure about specifics yet, we were hoping to get the pathology report back today but it is still not in. All the surgeon/oncologist has said is Non small cell stage III. I will let you know as soon as I know. She also just agreed to seeing another oncologist, so that is really good news considering how negative she has been. They mentioned that surgery would maybe be a option after chemo. Hopefully the 2nd opinion can offer more info. I will keep you all posted.

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I know how absolutely frightening this is! I was DX stage 4 in Jan.
I thought everything had to be done at once but you need y
To take take a deep breath and move first to finding an oncologist you trust and get through the test.
If surgery is an option that is good news.
All of you need to de-stress as you'll find this is a process that will take some time but be determined to find the very best care available to you.
I'm sorry you have to face this horrible disease. Remember there is lots of Hope.
V

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If your Oncologist is negative, find a new one...And a second opinion. Do you live near a major cancer center? Wish the best, xoxoxo ndm

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This is a scary diagnosis. The internet is full of old data and statistics. I am 2 1/2 years post surgery and then chemo and radiation due to some lymph node involvement. there are so many here who are living with the more advanced stages. She has had hers discovered early and hopefully she will have good response to the treatments.

I hope the second opinion is kinder, and perhaps they can help you both feel better about her options. I went directly to the thoracic surgeon and skipped the oncologist. But others, including my pulmonologest argue that choice. I wanted the darn thing cut out. I feel confident that it saved my life and added the chemo for extra assurance. Radiation was a difficult decision but my oncologist felt that was even more important since the mediastinal nodes were involved.

We are here to support you and your Mom no matter what her and her medical care team. Try to think positive thoughts. Many of us are showing no evidence of the disease. Try to take care of yourself. Your Mom will find great joy in meeting her grandchild. I know I did. I lived to know her.
Julie JB

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My mom was stage 2b. She was deemed inoperable by several surgeons before having surgery at Duke University. 5 years later, she remains cancer-free. We pray for many more clean scans. Finding the right doctor is everything!

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I agree with getting a second opinion. My first onc was talking ports and stomach tubes and hadn't even talked to me about my cancer. He scared the heck out of me. My hubby got with a nurse navigator at the hospital and she quickly put together a great team for me. Love my new onc. I was diagnosed stage iv inoperable with mets in February. Started tarceva however, it did not work for me. Start first round of chemo tomorrow. I know i will kick this cancers butt. They are so many success stories. Keep you and your mom strong. She can beat this and help you raise those beautiful babies. Cancer is NOT a death sentence. Hang tough! Jamey

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I was diagnosed stage 2b after I had surgery and my top right lobe removed. Went from Specialist who sent me to Thorasic surgeon who then scheduled surgery. The surgeon recommended me to the BC Cancer Society and from there I was referred to an oncologist. Didn't like the set up there and found another team that got me through 4 rounds of chemo to make sure all was gone. It was my then 82 year old mother, Inspire and from many here that I was able to get through it all. I live in a very remote area so not much help. I am now a 3 year friend of NED (No Evidence of Disease). Prayers for your Mom and you. Keep us posted and let us know when the baby has arrived. Sharon

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My 57 year old husband was diagnosed with stage 3b NSCLC (adenocarcinoma) in January 2013. The first oncologist he saw told him it was inoperable. The second gave him chemo and on July 8 just gone he had his left upper lobe removed. He is seeing the oncologist again this evening to see about some radiotherapy.

His hair is growing back and he says he feels great.

I can't deny it's very scary but hold your nerve. Everybody here is friendly and knows their stuff. I wish you and your mother well.

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I am very sorry to hear about your mother. My mom was also diagnosed with stage III in November 2009. I remember how hard it was to get the diagnosis and how stressful it was to get in with the right doctors, but once she had a treatment plan in place and got started on that, the stress level (for me at least) got much better.

Now, it has been three years since my mom finished up her treatments and she is 80 years old and still going strong.

My mom has squamous, non-small cell - and because of the location of the tumor, it was inoperable. She went through chemo and radiation, which was not easy but do-able.

Please know that there is reason to stay positive and try not to internalize all the stress - easier said than done, I know, but so important with your pregnancy. There is nothing you can do to change the diagnosis, so your job is just to help get doctors in whom you can place your confidence and support your mom while she goes through treatments to get well.

I found the group here at Inspire very helpful and inspiring along the way. Hope you have the same experience.

Best of luck to you and your mom.

I have 2 kids (now 11 and 9 years old) - and my mom has always been very involved in their lives, which I think helped keep her positive and determined to get through everything.

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There are a number of ten and fifteen year survivors who were diagnosed at stage four. I am drawing close to the three year mark with stage four with mets to liver. Regular exercise has had a big effect on my recovery. Lots of walking and gentle stretching.

When you know what chemo treatment she will have we can be more specific in advice. Keep her well hydrated and start her on stool softeners when chemo starts.

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Eleven years ago diagnosis : NSC Pancoast Stage IIIA.
Surgery impossible. So the need of a concurrent chemoterap & radiations treatment. I am an old dad (71) who plays actually tennis championship in Belgium and can told you that hope is an essential element for your mom healing. Of course I stopped immediatly smoking the next day of the bad news.
We actually build a little association "Vaincre" (Win) (http://www.elcwp.org/).
For sure your Mom will win.

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I was diagnosed with 3B inoperable squamous nsclc
5-1/2 years ago at age 47. I have had no evidence of disease for almost as long. There really are a lot of success stories...Feel free to read my profile and also check out "Good News" and "Survivor Stories" shown over on the right.

You do not need a negative oncologist.....You need one who will not give up on your mom and continue to look outside the box for options if necessary. Even if you are happy with your oncologist, a second opinion is important so you know that another onc is on the same page as far as her treatment. I'm sure others on here who may live in your area may be able to help you out with that....I'm way over in Ohio.

Keep us posted on her pathology report results and plan of treatment. You will find this to be a wonderful group with a lot of knowledge, experience and support. It's wonderful she has you to lean on. Best wishes to your mom.

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When my mum was diagnosed with stage IV Adencarcinoma last October I was pregnant with my second child. My mum & me are also very close she's my best friend & life without her is unimaginable. My son is now 3 months old & it breaks my heart to think she may not be here to see him grow up. I cried every day throughout my pregnany & every scan I had fell around the same time as mums scans or chemotherapy. I can relate to how you feel & it's so hard. My son was very unsettled & cried constantly up until a few weeks ago & I blame myself as I was so upset throughout my pregnancy. Support your mum & let her know everyday just how much you love her x

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Thank you ALL for these amazing stories. They brought my dad to tears last night, and I think we all finally slept a little better knowing there is hope. What an amazing group of people.

Still no Pathology report but it is expected tomorrow, then I can be more detailed. I'll get details soon and post them.

Thank you, Thank you...so happy for all the survivors out there and I will be adding those fighting to my thoughts and prayers along with my mom.

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HI, DO NOT GIVE UP...FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT...I DID AND NOW I AM A CURED NED HAD STAGE 111A ADNEOCARCINOMA, SPREAD TO LYMPHS. TOOK 9 OUT IN 20 PIECES AND LEFT TWO CANCER LYMPHS IN. WENT TO MD ANDERSON IN ORLANDO. THEY WANTED TO DO CHEMO AND THEN SURGERY THEN RADIATION. I SAID NO SURGERY. I WILL GO HERE IN DAYTONA BEACH AND SEE WHAT THEY SAY, THEY SAID NO PARTIAL LUNG REMOVAL AND JUST 33 RADIATION AND 5 CHEMO. LOST 1/2 MY HAIR..NOT ALL OF IT..HOORAY AND FELT GREAT 90 PERCENT OF THE TIME. I AM TELLING YOU ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING . IF YOU CAN KEEP LAUGHING AT THINGS AND MAKING JOKES IT REALLY HELPS. I CRIED EVERY NIGHT AND EVERY MORNING ON THE WAY TO WORK. I WORKED ALL THE TIME EXCEPT ON WEDNESDAYS, CHEMO/AND RADIATION DAY. THE OTHER DAYS WERE JUST RADIATION. YOU MUST KEEP A GOOD OUT LOOK AND PRAY TO GOD AND ASK HIM TO CURE YOU. I PRAYED TO ST PIO, HE IS A HEALER SAINT , MY FRIEND GAVE ME HIS MASS CARD. GOOGLE HIM. IT REALLY HELPS. I AM NORMALLY A PERSON WHO KIDS AROUND AND JOKES AND LAUGHS ALL THE TIME. . ALSO LISTEN TO MUSIC. IF YOU WAKE UP AT NIGHT YOU WILL BE SINGING AND NOT CRYING. THE SONGS STAY IN YOUR HEAD. IT IS A TERRIBLE DISEASE . I AM 61 YEARS OLD AND FOUND OUT ON MY 41ST WEDDING ANNIVERSAYS...THAT WAS A TERRIBLE NIGHT BUT MY HUSBAND CAN'T DO THE CHECK BOOK SO IT WAS NOT MY TIME YET. I AM CURED NOW . I HAD MY FIRST 3 MONTH SCAN AND NO SIGN OF CANCER, CANCER FREE PRAISE JESUS...GET A GOOD SUPPORT SYSTEM AND DON'T TALK TO THE DEBBIE DOWNERS. DON'T TALK TO PEOPLE WHEN THEY SAY OH SO ANDSO HAD LUNG CANCER, THE ANSWER IS IN THE END, AND I DID THIS MYSELF AND WENT NUTS...OH AND THEY DIED....BS...I DID NOT DIE AND NEITHER IS YOUR MOTHER GOING TO DIE..YOU STAY STRONG AND SCREAM AND CRY WHEN YOU HAVE TO AND YOU WILL ALL GET THRU IT...LIKE WE DID....GOD IS WATCHING YOU AND ME AND YOUR MOM....LOVE TO YOU AND I WILL PRAY FOR YOUR MOM...STAY STAY STAY POSITIVE....PMA...POSITIVE METAL ATTITUDE OK..

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