Adenocarcinoma Lung Cancer

Updated on April 17, 2012
K.D. asks from Flower Mound, TX
9 answers

I know this is a site more for mommy questions but I couldnt think where else to post my question that I knew I would get some honest answers as none of you know me and arent worried about hurting my fellings. My dear friend and neighbor has been sick for months and the doctors kept telling her she was anemic. Not sure why but she finally went and saw an oncologist 2 weeks ago. She found out last Tuesday that she had lung cancer. What I was told is a large tumor of her left lung and a few small ones on her right. As well as small tumors on her liver and one on her spine. Now I"m not stupid and I know this isnt good. By that Friday she couldnt breath and her husband took her to the doctor. She had fluid in her lungs, the doctor drained it and are watching her. Now I do not know what stage she is in but from what I can read on the internet once the cancer spreads that means its in stage 4. Of course I know everything I read on the internet isnt always true. Thats why I am here asking you. She has 7 kids. 5 of which still live at home and the youngest is 3. I"m pretty close to the family and her teeneage daughters. They are always at my house.

Anyway, I can not get anyone to tell me the stage she is in and I"m not stupid enough to ask what the doctor said about her life time frame. I"m trying to be very optomistic and I belive in prayer but I am also trying to prepare myself so that I can be strong for her children if the worse does happen. I'm not trying to put a death sentence on her, I'm just trying to be realistic and understand the best I can. I"m so use to being in control and I feel so lost because I have no control.

SO my question is, do any of you have experience with this and what information can you give me.

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So What Happened?

Thanks so much for the responses. I knew I would get some honest answers. I agree the stage really doesn't matter it's just how my mind was wrapping around the severity of her case. I went to the hospital tonight. It's been 2 weeks since she told me about this and I couldn't believe how bad she looked. I just saw her from the door. I stopped because the nurse was in there and she was moaning in pain. Her hubby finally stepped out and told me she was having a bad afternoon. I offered to come back later and he said no shell want to see you. I waited anothe 10 min and her hubby left the room crying and her mom came to tell me she in s lot of pain and has now developed blood clots. I'm gonna pray and prepare myself. She gotten so bad so fast. I went and sat in my car and just cried. I needed that dose of reality. Thank you do much for being honest and telling me how it is.

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answers from Charlotte on

I'm so sorry for you all, K.. Lung cancer usually goes pretty fast. Please do what you can to help them prepare - legal matters, medical matters, all of it needs to be handled while she can still make her wishes known and set up stuff for her husband and children. A medical power of attorney is important too.

I agree with getting help for them in the house and for meals. Thank goodness the children know you and you are there for them. Again, I am very sorry.


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answers from Pittsburgh on

I did a quick google. I don't know.
Seems to be a very common type of lung cancer, in smokers AND non-smokers.

Not to beat a dead horse, but have you considered setting up a care page for your neighbor?
I set O. up for my friend, recently diagnosed with leukemia, and it has been very helpful for scheduling dinner deliveries, keeping everyone posted and updated, etc.

Good luck.
I second Momma L's advice: Hope for the best and brace for the worst.
Really, would staging the cancer make any difference? :)

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

My MIL, 73 years old, was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer in January of 2011. Prior to the diagnosis, no doctor saw this coming--so sad:( She took care good care of her health too, but had an ongoing cough that wasn't diagnosed early enough. She underwent all the treatments involving radiation and chemo. She completed her last chemo treatment the last week of April 2011. The oncologist told her that the tumor had shrunk. All of us were excited. A week later after ending her therapies, she collapsed. She ended up in the hospital and developed pneumonia very quickly and ended up on life support. All of her major organs shut down, and sadly, she was taken off life support. It was very tragic and very quick.

I know that this isn't what you want to hear. My deepest sympathies to you, your friend, and her family. Lung cancer is horrible. It's a very aggressive cancer. Most often, from what I have learned in my experience, the chemo and radiation can also be just as fatal because they weaken the immune system, opening up the body to pneumonia and other infections. We often wonder if my MIL would still be around had she not done the chemo and radiation. We don't know what "would have" been. But, the questions remain. My dearest friend's dad had lung cancer, but it was caught early enough and he lived another 15 years minus a part of his one lung.

If you are religious, keep her in your prayers.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Bloomington on

My mom died of this 8 years ago at age 56. She was a smoker. My dad's second wife (didn't know her well) died of this 2 years ago around the same age. She did not smoke, but was a hair dresser and allowed smoking in her salon.

From what I know personally and understand.
Most lung cancers are not detected until about stage 4, unless a person has a lung xray....and no one usually has this done. So lung cancer seems to spring out of no where when symptoms show up. It can take a person 10 years to get to that stage.

Mom was losing weight and couldn't breathe. She went to her regular doctor and he was dismissive. My SIL got crappy with the dr. and told him to look again. He listened to her lungs and said she should go in to have an xray. When Mom asked when, he said NOW. They drained a gallon out. She was hospitalized that night. That was mid June. She stayed in the hospital for a week while they tested her and diagnosed her. She went home on hospice (meaning they expected her to die within 6 months). They tried Chemo for her, but that almost killed her right then. She did have radiation for pain management. She soon was on oxygen 24/7. We had a hospice nurse come regulary. (I moved home to be her caregiver.) She ended up on a morphine pump for pain management. Mom needed more and more morphine for pain, but also fought back not wanting to be out of it. She often stayed in pain so she could mentally function. She died almost 4 months to the day later.

I would guess your friend is at stage 4. I would guess that they are still trying to decide what level of treatment is best for her. Once you hear the mention of hospice, then you know it's probably very soon (6 months or less).

I would like to feel that I was a comfort to my mom about all of this because I allowed her to make plans and not dismiss or be in denial of what was happening. In a way, it was my coping mechanism. Her death didn't hit me until about a month after....when I didn't have so many things to tend to. Be a friend through all of this. If she talks about her death, let her. Don't hush her up. If she talks about how she wants things after she is gone, listen and take notes. Many people go through denial and can't handle listening to someone make their plans. Be that resource if you need to be.

If she hasn't already done so, record her memories of her children's births and stories of their personalities. I don't have anyone to tell me what I was like as a baby or how my mom enjoyed her pregnancy with me.

I pray for you and this woman, and her family. Feel free to PM me if you need support. It is a very hard road.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I'm so sorry to hear this. I will keep you all in my prayers. My sister passed away 3 weeks ago from metastatic breast cancer. She fought it for 3 years. She originally had it in 2000 and was "cured" for 8 years. After a mastectomy 3 years ago and a long summer of chemo and a lot of problems, it spread. She lived 2 1/2 years at stage 4. She had good times and bad. We thought we would lose her last September but she got better and we were blessed to have a great holiday season with her. My point is that no one knows for sure how long we have. I understand why you want to know her status, so you can prepare yourself for what is coming. So make the most of every moment, whether it is spending time with her and her kids or doing things for her or helping make those tough decisions for after she is gone. Think of each moment as a gift.


answers from Houston on

My dad has been through some pretty major stuff, including the filled lungs.. he was told 13 different times he only had days to live and to go home and plan his funeral. (He had Leukemia). He beat a ton of odds and lived to be 49.... his medical staff was shocked he made it that long.

So, even if she is in stage 4, there is always hope. If she is in stage 1, there is still danger. For us, the best thing to do was to hope for the best, but prepare for the worst. So, if I were you, I would be as stalwart and supportive to her and her family as possible, but not particularly hopeful of a good outcome (of course never vocalize that!) I would also help the children live as normal lives as possible while at your house, so they can feel a sense of security.



answers from Dallas on

I'm so sorry. You and your friend's family will be in our prayers.



answers from Shreveport on

I am truly sorry. My heart breaks for you and her. How old is she? My grandfather passed away from it along with ephesema and conjestive heart failure. It can be cured. But it is very unlikely. I will pray for your friend, because I DO BELIEVE that GOD can heal at any point. A pediatrician in my daughters doctors office had ovarian or uterine cancer, years ago. She was not given a good outcome. I think it was 8 year ago. She is completely healed. So, no one can tell another person they are going to die. They can estimate what they believe, but can't decide the outcome. Good luck


answers from Redding on

One of my tenants passed away of lung cancer last year. He was diagnosed, told it was inoperable because of the stage, and he was gone 6 months later. He did have a couple of chemo treatments since they said it would add a few months to his life, but he got so sick from them he decided not to do anymore. He left 4 kids and was in his 50's. A very, heavy smoker.
I also had a boss that had a lung removed due to cancer, that was 8 years ago and he's still doing fine. But believe it or not he started smoking about a year after his surgery. It's a horrible addiction.

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