Finding lung cancer early is our goal, but often the symptoms of lung cancer are missed for a period of time. A chronic cough or shortness of breath might be attributed to bronchitis, allergies, or even normal aging. Some symptoms of lung cancer are vague, such as fatigue, or atypical, such as knee pain. Some people have no symptoms.
What symptoms led to your diagnosis of lung cancer? Please share your story, or a tip you would like to share with others if they experience these symptoms. Share Your Story
- My hubby is 11 yrs younger than me but I worry he may have lung cancer he whistles in his sleep has fatigue however he drives long distance to work and back but coughs every morn and has done for the 15 yrs I've known him ,,,he has smoked everyday for 25 yrs Editor's note: It's important that your husband is checked out by his doctor. His symptom of whistling in his sleep could be due to an airway obstruction and there are many causes of this. Not just lung cancer, but problems such as sleep apnea are treatable and the treatments can make a difference if many of these conditions are detected early.
- —Guest sonya
- accidentally, they have found a 2.m nodule on my right lung.... i was so afraid... this monday i am scheduled for an MRI to let the doctors know what have they found on my xray... i was really afraid..but happy to find you here..... it gives me so much information about my situation....please pray that it is not cancer....God is good all the time.... Editor's note: Will keep you in my thoughts and prayers that it isn't cancer.
- —Guest matilde
Moms signs of stage 4 lung cancer
- My mother passed this last week of stage 4 lung cancer after being diagnosed with it for only four days. There were so many signs that were ignored by her physician and me only being uneducated on cancer. About two years ago mom gained a lot of abdominal weight. She hardly ever ate. She began to become tired and we thought was just depressed and lazy. The Dr. Started her on many pshyc meds and treated only psychiatricaly. So about 6 months ago momma developed a horrible cough and weird breathing patterns.They diagnosed her with COPD and then changed the diagnosis to walking Phnemonia. She would become very distant with everyone. WE started seeing less of her on facebook and no phone calls. I took her to Dr. at least 32 times one year only to be sent home saying the same thing that she had phnemonia and mental problems. Her breathing was horrible and had a breathing mask on most the time. She then suffered a fracture of the right shoulder by laying there on the couch.
My mother was taken from me by cancer!
- I just lost my best friend, my mother, and my world this week to stage 4 cancer. Mother had been sick for quiet some time. In a year and a half I took her to about 68 DR appts and maybe 20 hospital ER visits only to be told she was suffering from long-term pneumonia and respiratory problems. Then she had severe pain in her left shoulder so I took her in and they said she had a fracture on the left shoulder.We told the Dr. that she didn't fall or bump into anything. We couldn't believe she had a fracture. So we thought nothing of it and would joke about how she was always lazy lately and never got off the couch so how could she break it doing nothing due to her being fatigued? Well some time passed and the shoulder was not improving. The Dr, referred mom to an orthopedic but with so many mistakes on referring her out it took them 8 months to get her in for an appt. SHe had stage 4 cancer and died 4 days later. Why did they miss all the signs of cancer? She didn't even get a chance.
- —Guest Lara Cain
Heart palpitations, headaches
- My 49 yr old niece went to the dr Monday because of headaches that were waking her up during the night. She was diagnosed with brain metastasis lung cancer. Wow! What a shock. She had seen her dr two months ago, because of heart palpitations. Tests were inconclusive and there was no planned follow up. Guess what? I read on a website that heart palpitations can be a symptom of lung cancer. Too bad the dr didn't follow up to find out the cause of her heart palpitations. Her 25 year old son and 24 year old daughter are really having a hard time with the possibility of losing their mom.
- —Guest TamsAuntJ
My beautiful V
- In March of this year, my mother was dx kidney cancer metastasis lungs( Stage IV). Everyday I shake my head several times because I can not believe a woman who never smoked, drinked, lived well, and just started her life @ 59 is living with this demon in her. Its a struggle to call her and hear how much pain she has been in each day, but I do because its a must. My heart aches all the time just thinking about it. Family such as older sister, aunts, cousins, her father, etc. do not go visit her, and its heart wrenching, and live so close to her. I live on the otherside of the country, but I have been there this past summer with my son, and leaving two weeks from now. We are seeking an 2nd opinion soon, but please keep us in prayer. He does produce miracles. I-J-N, Amen.
Whistling and Wheezing
- around new years 2009 -10 a friend noticed i have a whistle sound when i breath . two weeks later i was carrying a mattress up a fire escape and i wheezed loudly. that was my upper left lung collasping i found out 2 months later when i finally went in to see a doc . the tumour was growing at the entrance to my left lung and pinching my air flow causing the whistle and the collasped lung .it hadnt spread but i had a large tumour. they gave me radiation and chemo had lung removed, im ok now but had a pet scan today because a lymph node near my right lung has grown a little . get the results tuesday im worried of course.
- —Guest marty
Pulmonary nodule 2cm
- I had chest pain which sent me to A&E in Feb, chest x-ray negative, had my heart checked negative, seen a neurologist who did MRI negative, loads of blood tests all negative...been fatigued for 8 months and a dry hacking cough and also shoulder and neck pain that cones and goes. Finally had another chest x ray after swollen lymph nodes hadn't gone down after 4 months. X ray found a 2cm nodule on left lung. Just had a lymph node biopsy and having full body CT with contrast on Monday...have everything crossed that it's not cancer...yes I am a smoker but since the last x ray I gave up...your stories have given me the courage and strength to get through this and wish you all well x
- —Guest Lottelulu
Lung Cancer Symptoms
- My first symptom was a persistent cough and fatique for a few weeks. I began to get feverish and have the chills along with the cough and fatigue. Then to the left of my right shoulder blade I started have pain which turned to sharp stabing pain which worsened if massaged. Within the next hours I started to have the sharp pain in the right side of my chest also. If felt like I was being stabbed from chest to back at this point. I could hardly walk up the two flights of stairs to tuck my children into bed. I was diagnosed with pneumonia at the emergency room that evening but was also told that there was a mass blocking the entry way to my right lung. A few days later I was diagnosed with small cell lung cancer.
- —Guest Lisa Wheeler
lung cancer synptoms
- Pain in right knee then in my ankles then in my hip turned out to be nsclc.
- —Guest pauline smith
Both parents with lung cancer
- My parents were diagnosed with non small cell lung cancer stage 4 within 6 weeks of each other. Dad had symptoms of pneumonia. We were all helping him deal with it and then out of nowhere mom had a seizure- found to be brain mets from lung cancer. They are helping each other through it but it is SO hard. Such a long road ahead.
- —Guest sad daughter
- I was on vacation, and noticed my feet and legs swollen, I was feeling fatigued. When I came back from vacation, my children brought me to the hospital, I had a chest X ray and was diagnosed with stage IV Lung cancer, I was given 6 months to live, this was on 15. Nov. 2006, I'm still here, 6 years later. I have had chemo, 36 radiation treatments, "Tarceva", I'm on no treatments now, I feel wonderful, you just have to stay strong, I have wonderful Dr, they have given me lots of xtra time with Lung Cancer. I'm a Survivor.
- —Guest Rene
Be Your Own Advocate
- 3 yrs ago,I had a pulled muscle sensation on the right side of my neck when taking a deep breath. Smoked for 30 yrs. but had quit18 yrs ago. Had x-ray, negative. Feeling persisted. Had thyroid ultrasound, negative. Feeling persisted.Told PCP I need to get to bottom of this because it shouldn't persist. PCP said that rotator cuff injuries don't heal & it's probably something like that. I had him set up an appointment with a thoracic surgeon & had a CT scan.
Went to surgeon's office ALONE to discuss results & was told that I had lung cancer. It was staged 3A. This was Jan.2011 My (now ex) PCP said that he didn't order a CT scan because "the U.S. Task Force" doesn't recommend it. i.e. the insurance companies. (It is NOW recommended for at risk patients) It didn't appear on the x-ray because it was very high up in my upper right lobe. Had chemo, surgery at Dana Farber & then radiation.
Moral of story: follow your instincts!
- —Guest guestlaurie
- My husband had no symptoms except 2 1/2 wks of pneumonia in Jan. 2012, with back pain. When the "P" was over and still had back pain docs did a chest x-ray, MRI, and blood tests. First they told us multiple myloma but later determined it was non-small cell lung cancer carcinoma and it had matastisized to his thoratic spine and his liver. In March he lost his voice (possible pressure on a nerve or tumor touching his vocal chords)and in April, 12 days in the hospital with pneumonitis. Because of a mutated gene he can take "Tarceva" a targeted cancer treatment pill, which he takes every morn on an empty stomach and he had 13 Radiation treatments. He is weak, shaky, on 8 L of oxygen and needs assistance with walking with a walker, going to the RR and even getting dressed. He needs a wheelchair when visiting a doc. It's so hard seeing a farmer doing it all in Jan. to being so dependent on everyone in a matter of months. We don't know how much time we have but are making the best of it
bronchitis and shortness of breath
- 3 weeks ago sunday i went to the ER for bronchitis/shortness of breath worsening over several days. they did a chest x-ray and said i had a large mass on my right lung that was significantly larger than it was on an x-ray from 2008 and i should see my doctor the very next day. since then i have had CTscans, CT-guided needle biopsy, brain scan and PET scan - have recieved a preliminary diagnosis of a fist-sized tumor of non-small cell lung cancer in my chest. today they'll tell me if/where it has traveled. based on all that, what they can offer me in the way of treatment and prognosis. can't begin to explain to you how i felt/feel when i learned at the ER there was a chance 4 years ago to catch/stop this but someone dropped the ball and didn't bother to tell the patient and no one else seemed to care. The lesson here: ALWAYS follow-up on your own medical tests - don't assume they'll get in touch if a problem is indicated. assuming has sure made an ass out of me, hasn't it??!
- —Guest rita