Cancer Slapped Me in the Face!

Last updated: April 2018

Not the day I was told I had Lung Cancer. Not the day I was told I had Bladder Cancer. Not before or after my surgery to remove both left lobes would be removed. It was today while I was awaiting a STAT CT scan of my lungs. I've had a weird cough and erratic fevers. On Monday, I started feeling better but the slightest exertion, I was short of breath. Fevers gone, so I'm feeling pretty good. I was a good patient and called my oncologist. Due to my immunotherapy, she told me to NOT go to the Emergency Room just yet. She wanted me to come to her office for my normal treatment and we would determine where to go from there.

Arriving out of breath

So I arrive at my appointment. It is a considerable long walk to my doctors offices so when I arrived I was out of breath. Upon entering the room to have my port accessed, the nurse noticed I was still out of breath. She suggested we walk around the hallway a few times to see what my Pulse Oximeter showed. Half way around the hallway, it dropped into the 80's - not good.

My doctor immediately said she was cancelling my Opdivo, and when she listened to my one lung (I only have one - left side removed surgically - she said it sounded worse than she's ever heard when I come in. She sent me down for an immediate CT Scan. Her fear was either pneumonia or a blood clot.

Being rushed to radiology

I almost felt as if I was having a heart attack at the rate they were rushing me down to Radiology. I couldn't figure out whey it was such a rush. And, I was told I was NOT allowed to leave Radiology until the Radiologist came out with the results.

Well, in a sense, lucky for me as it was pneumonia. If it had been a blood clot, I would have been admitted immediately. As a cancer patient and advocate, I know how dangerous either diagnosis was, but I don't think I truly realized how bad until everyone started rushing. Gives you a new spin on things.

So here I am, 6 days later, a prescription of Levaquin (I call this the devil's antibiotic as it has so many side effects) and actually feeling better. No more fevers, the croup cough is gone, but I am still exhausted with the slightest bit of activity.

Don't wait

The moral of my story is: don't be like me and wait. I know you're wondering what this has to do with Bladder Cancer. Well, I have had Lung Cancer for four and a half and Bladder Cancer for one year. Battling both at the same time requires me to be constantly aware of how my body feels. Call and go to the doctor as soon as you can. It doesn't matter what type of cancer you have - don't wait.

Oh, and by the way, don't plan on helping your family move residences on your 2nd day of an antibiotic for pneumonia. That is a story for another day!

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