Trish Chancey

First post: 3/13/2017 Latest post: 7/25/2017
Yogi Berra once said, "When you come to a fork in the road, take it."   Well it looks like, even though I didn't even see that fork in the road, somehow it ended up in my pocket.  But I'm getting a little ahead of myself.  I had been coughing for about three months.  It was a seemingly minor annoying cough.  Then New Year's Eve 2017, add blood to that cough and, you guessed it, a visit to the Emergency Room and an overnight stay at Kaiser.  The X-ray revealed a 4.4cm mass on the upper left lobe of my lung and a 7 mm nodule in the lower left lobe.  Various tests ensued over the next couple of months which kept coming back "inconclusive."  A little over two months later, I was diagnosed with lung cancer (it’s crazy but true that non-smokers like me can get lung cancer).  I started chemo March 13 for three days straight (called a cycle) - approx. five hours the first day, and one hour each for days two and three. They’re only focusing on the 4.4 cm mass (they’ll watch the nodule, but they aren’t doing anything currently to address it).  The goals of the chemo are to shrink the mass and kill any potential cancer cells that might be in the lymph nodes located between the right and left lung lobes.  There is only a 30% chance the chemo will work.  After two cycles of chemo (both being exactly like the first, with approx. 28 days between cycles), a test will be done to see if the chemo is working.  If it’s working, I will go through two more cycles of chemo and then have surgery to remove the upper left lobe.  If it doesn’t work, the surgery will be performed to remove the upper left lobe after the first two cycles of chemo and, since the mass will not have shrunk, it will be very difficult to perform. Because of the size and location of the mass, it will be difficult not to incur other risks during surgery (it’s very close to the heart).  In addition, if the chemo doesn’t work, they’re not sure if they can get all the cancer.  Welcome to my journey.  Thank you for walking alongside me.  I must warn you, since it’s cancer, and I'm only human, the road may be bumpy from time to time.  That being said, let the journey begin...

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