A woman holding her chest and looking nervous with a cardiogram line behind her

My Recent Scare!

Besides November being my birthday month, Thanksgiving, and my cancerversary, I received some not-so-good news: it was a lung cancer scare. In November of 2019 after my lung cancer was NED for 4 years, I found out had two very small brain mets. It really didn’t help that it was a few days before Thanksgiving and about 2 ½ weeks after my birthday.

The start of my lung cancer scare: the doctor's orders

Fast forward to November 2022. On the 16th, my oncologist called and told me that I needed a PET scan as soon as possible. They scheduled the scan for the following day.

Scanxiety, anxiety

I needed the PET scan because the report showed a growing nodule in the center of my chest next to my heart. This wasn't the news I wanted to hear 2 weeks after my birthday and a week before Thanksgiving.

At the same time, I scheduled an appointment with my oncologist and a thoracic surgeon. Yes, I was very worried and scared. All I could think about was my newly born grandson and how much I want him and my granddaughter to remember me.

I thought of the worst-case scenario, and I usually know better than that. I’m always a positive person, and I try to focus on that. But because I just became a grandma again on October 29th, 2022, it hit me differently this time.

The results are in

On November 17th, I found out that the results from my PET scan were in. Attached to the result was a note from my oncologist. She stated that there was no activity on my PET, and it was tough to know what to make of this. Since I just saw her at our appointment, she told me we would talk more at my appointment the following week.

A big sigh of relief

The reassuring thing was that they did not see a ton of the disease in multiple places. She also said I would be seeing the thoracic surgeon to discuss the biopsy of my growing node, and we would talk more about it at my appointment. This gave me peace of mind, and my anxiety level went from high to low. I was thrilled that there was no sign of disease!

The more opinions, the better

The following week at my appointment, my oncologist told me that they thought it was a pericardial cyst. He still wanted me to see the thoracic surgeon for her expertise. When I got to the thoracic surgeon, she assured me it was a pericardial cyst, and the PET scan showed no signs of disease. So therefore, there was no need to do a biopsy. She would still take my results to the board the following day and discuss them with the team, and I would get a call.

The best news!

On November 23rd, the day before Thanksgiving, I received the call from my oncologist. He told me that the board all agreed that it was a pericardial diverticulum, which I was probably born with or developed at some point in my life. It’s not a serious condition, and I was good.

This was the best news I could receive right before Thanksgiving. I made sure to let everyone know that I was thankful for this news. I also told my little munchkin while I was holding him that I was going to be around for a little bit longer!

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