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Forum Name: Lung Cancer

Question: 12mm mass


 jade16 - Thu Feb 01, 2007 11:03 pm

My mother is 67 and in recent weeks experienced a dry cough, hoarseness and general malaise. She was treated for a 'respiratory infection'. Since she wasn't feeling better the doctor ordered a chest xray which showed a mass on one of her lungs. Two days later she had a CT scan that showed a 12mm mass but results were inconclusive. She is scheduled to have a PET scan tomorrow. I'm very concerned. She is an ex-smoker - I think she smoked approx 35 years.

I know there is still much to be determined, but i want to know if a 12mm mass is considered small or large or somewhere in between? So, if this is malignant and the only nodule found would surgery be a viable option?
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Fri Feb 02, 2007 12:49 pm

User avatar Hello,

The first thing to be excluded in the diagnosis of a Solitary lung nodule is malignancy. Old age, history of smoking for long duration make the likelihood suspicious of malignancy is high.

CT scan can help in the differentiation between malignant and benign nodule in most of cases. The fact that your doctor has recommended PET means that either he is suspecting cancer or the CT Scan was not of great help to rule out cancer.
In both cases, positron-emission tomographic (PET) scanning would be of great help in the evaluation and in differentiating between benign and malignant disease.

You have to wait again for the results of the pathological examination of the biopsy he will take through bronchoscopy or CT guided according to the mass location (tissue biopsy is mandatory). In addition, you have to complete her work up with abdominal Ultra-Sound to determine the stage of her disease. The treatment approach and prognosis differ according to the pathological type and the extent of the disease.

If the results show benign nodule then a radiological follow up is advisable, stable nodules on follow up are usually benign.

Keep us updated.
Best regards.
 jade16 - Fri Feb 02, 2007 1:07 pm

Thank you, Dr. Mahmoud for a quick response. No news yet, but I will return should i have any further questions.
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Fri Feb 02, 2007 1:11 pm

User avatar Hello,

You are welcome, just keep us updated.
Best regards.

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