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Back pain...

Hi, I'm John H R.

Had a upper left lobectomy in Oct. I have a recurring pain just under my left shoulder blade. Occurs mainly if I have to stand for a long time. Seems to center in one spot. Is this a common pain after a lobectomy? I’m really new this…

  • Post #1
  • Sun Dec 17, 2017
Hi, I'm bettysw

Hi John H R,
Had a lower left lobectomy almost three years ago. There are recurring pains, and eventually they become milder and you get use to them.
Mine are from the drainage tube. Had one near the upper lobe, which has become a mild discomfort. Have one under my ribs on the front left side that has never gone away. Sometimes is mild, other days it is a bit more intense. Doctor mentioned pain killers and pain management, but I have tried to stay away from either, and learn to live with it. The pain will diminish with time.
Wish I could give you a better answer, but I have not found one for myself. Otherwise, I am doing very well.
How are you doing? Getting any chemo or radiation? Feeling ok otherwise?
Best of luck!

  • Post #2
  • Wed Dec 20, 2017
Hi, I'm John H R.

Thanks, Bettysw. I was very fortunate in that they caught lung cancer in the Stage 1, 1.9cm stage. Every lymph node clear. No chemo or radiation. 6 month follow up with CAT scan. Your answer is very helpful. I think that my back pain was caused by spreading the ribs in lobe removal…apparently takes a long time to go away. I’m with you on the pain killers but it does get annoying. Feeling good…back to exercising but have to watch how streanuous I do that. Does the shortness of breath get slowly better? Again, thanks for your input.

  • Post #3
  • Fri Dec 22, 2017

Hi John,

I am with Betty’s advice. She has been a champion for me too. I had an upper left lung resection (robotic surgery) in March. No chemo, no radiation. And literally in the last, month surgery aftereffects have finally gotten “good”. I took pain meds (on the docs’ insistence) for about 2 weeks after surgery. I could not focus my mind, even discern who the heck I was most days. So I quit them and “just took the pain”, which was not bad really. Also, had tremendous, horrific side effects to nearly every darn drug they gave me and am here now doing well. I still have shortness of breath but it seems “normal” to me now and my side, front, back numbness and twinges and stabbing pain have all greatly subsided. I feel so much better. It does get better. And they caught your tumor/scenario early as they did mine (1.5 cm lesion when they found it and 1.9 cm adenocarcinoma when they took it out 6 months later). Focus on the good aspects and forget the other—they’re just speed bumps. Be well, and a spectacular 2018 to you! Cindy

  • Post #4
  • Sun Dec 31, 2017
Hi, I'm John H R.

Hi Cindy… Thanks for the good message. It really helps to know that I’’m not in this by myself. I’m doing well…some pain still but I’m sure that will pass.Mostly stabbing pains in my chest..quick little jabs.I’m bothered more by dry coughs. Is this anything that I should worry about or is it “normal” to have this? Still have the back pain but I think that’s more muscular/skeletal than anything. Overall, though, I’m feeling pretty good at the end of three months since surgery. Beginning to slowly work out again and hoping that will help. Again thanks for your response and advise. John

  • Post #5
  • Mon Jan 8, 2018

Hi John, I too have dry coughs now once in a while. Some days worse, longer than others. After surgery (for months) I had more days of this. I had scary gurgling immediately after surgery, in the hospital, and horrible rib-hurting deep “wet” coughs for a day or 2. I think they said it was “lung holes” or some such—cannot remember the name. But all’s well now nearly a year later. In all honesty, it was just a month ago I felt real good; so it takes time. Some days/nights I’ll still get a tremendous pressure pinch or twinge or rumbly feeling by my left ribs and back. I catch my breath and get scared for an instant but it goes away. Surgeon people say it’s physiological from surgery (nerves mending). Once or twice I’ve taken a Tylenol. I stay very active—am painting cabinets now and cutting my grass, baking pumpkin bars…and on and on….Life goes on. Let me know how you’re doing. Peace to you. Cindy

  • Post #6
  • Sun Jan 14, 2018
Hi, I'm John H R.

Thanks Cindy. Your messages help a lot. As I said, I’m new to this. I keep forgetting tha it’s only been three months and I think I should be fully healed. I’m working out at the local health club again and probably shouldn’t be trying to do all that but I want to start golfing again as soon as the weather brakes. Again, thanks for your feedback…John

  • Post #7
  • Sun Jan 14, 2018

I get it John—the getting right back to what you were doing—but take it easy too on yourself and your diagnosis. Healing takes time and pushing it may make it all worse down the line. I know each person is different, but some of the mending is the same. It just has to happen in its own time. Keep “active” and positive but not crazy busy so it stymies the forward progression. I sound like a mother. LOL Peace to you. Cindy

  • Post #8
  • Sun Jan 21, 2018
Hi, I'm John H R.

Thanks, Cindy. I like your advise and know that I shouldn’t hurry things. Golfed this weekend and now have a burning sensation in my left chest. Don’t think I’ve injured anything but have decided to put away the clubs till it really warms up. Shortly after surgery, my oncologist told me that he’d schedule another PET scan (or maybe a CAT scan) in six months “or so”. Is this the way things will go for a while? Is it typically a PET or a CAT scan that they do? How often is this done? Again, thanks… John

  • Post #9
  • Sun Jan 21, 2018

Hi John, I am in your arena now—the “maintenance” avenue. I’ve talked to a few docs (surgeons, oncologists, pulmonarys) and each has their recommendations but, I think NCCN guidelines are a CT scan every 6 months (depending on Stage and scenario). I’ve not heard of a PET scan that soon after surgery but again, I’m not a doctor and I don’t know your exact situation/disease. That said, some CT’s are with contrast and some without. I had a non-contrast CT at 3 months after surgery (on my own insistence because I was petrified of the diagnosis and drove my Oncologist nuts so she ordered it to “calm” me) and then had a with-contrast CT Dec. 13. The first one I ever had. It was awful. I got sick, yadda yadda. But the scan prognosis was excellent. My next CT is in June and it’s non-contrast. Then I think the next will be with contrast? So there you have my program. I keep reading up on new treatments, avenues, procedures, and expectations. I try to share here whatever I find out regardless of what, who, when, where, how it effects or pertains to any cancer or treatment. For healing advice: I’d stay way low-key for a few more months if I were you. better safe than sorry ripping out, destroying good surgery. I finally had gotten back to more normal about 6 months after surgery. Be well, momCindy

  • Post #10
  • Sun Jan 28, 2018

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