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My "lung cancer" was Valley Fever

 
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jmccallum



Joined: 20 Dec 2006
Posts: 1
Location: Bethesda, Maryland, USA

PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 10:48 am    Post subject: My "lung cancer" was Valley Fever Reply with quote

Here is my short version of a different kind of story from most on this forum: I came back from Moscow (Russia) witha bad cough; subsequently went to a week of meetings in Tucson, Arizona including some dusty hikes; had several x-rays over the next month or two to see if I had perhaps contracted pneumonia in Moscow; x-ray showed a "density" that bothered my doctor and pulmonologist; had a fine needle aspiration biopsy that indicated non-small cell melanoma (lung cancer); immediately had surgery to remove middle lobe of right lung; pathology several days later revealed no evidence of cancer but instead Valley Fever. Subsequent blood titre and exams indicated no fungal spores in blood and no need for further concern or treatment. I'd be curious to hear if anybody has had a similar experience, and whether or not there is any concern for the future, and if so, what types of symptoms I should watch for.
I hope you are all doing well and have a pleasant 2006 holiday season.
Jim in Bethesda
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JB



Joined: 29 Dec 2004
Posts: 170
Location: Central California

PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to hear that you lost part of your lung to this insidious disease. A family friend lost his entire lung to VF under much of the same scenario as you.

His doctors thought it was a fast growing type of lung cancer and quickly removed his lung, only to find that what he had was scar tissue from a VF infection he had experienced some 20+ years previously. AND. . . these were doctors who practice in an endemic area! Hopefully you're feeling better now and thank the Lord it was not cancer.
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Ladysmith52



Joined: 18 Oct 2005
Posts: 573
Location: Bakersfield, CA

PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Jim -
So very sorry to hear of your surgery but happy you are bouncing back! It is my understanding that once we have had VF, we are at risk for a future episode. Sad Not only that, but we also experience ongoing symptoms which we did not have previous to the VF, such as chronic joint pains and lingering flu & cold symptoms when we encounter these viruses.

You may wish to read through some of the previous posts here on this message board and familiarize yourself with the symptoms to watch out for. Look for posts by the persons who have experienced a reoccurrence of VF after their initial one. I think Phillip is one of those who has had VF several different times. JB might be another one.....can't remember for sure.

My best to you and a happy, healthy 2007!
Blessings,
Diane
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Windwalker



Joined: 22 Apr 2006
Posts: 31
Location: Queen Creek, Arid-zona

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 2:51 am    Post subject: "lung cancer" Reply with quote

My initial visit to my GP, the results to an Xray and CT were "you have lung cancer." For 6 weeks, that's what I was told---- then, finally after pushing for additional CT scans, blood work PETscan, and finally a broncoscopy, the pulmonologist says "oh, it's VF". I went on diflucan in April '06, and after going through 3 doctors, finally found my current Doc that understands this damned disease! I was taken off the diflucan in December, after my titre test came back 1:1 but will go back in for another CT in April to keep a check on the nodules in my right lung. My VF had disseminated into my lymph nodes, and have been battling the ensuing "migratory arthritis"...the joint pain is still with me, even though the titre tests are clean. This is the most bizarre illness I've ever had --- and the most irritating! Laughing

My cough has come back a little, so I'll be telling my doc about that when I go back in on Monday for a consultation on circulatory issues in my legs.

I'll keep y'all posted!

Have a great weekend.
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Ladysmith52



Joined: 18 Oct 2005
Posts: 573
Location: Bakersfield, CA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2007 8:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Windwalker -
My best to you as you adjust without the meds. Within three weeks you may see some of your tiredness and joint pain decrease from being off the Diflucan. Hair loss and chapped lips will also go away. Good luck!!
Please keep us posted.
Diane
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Nana



Joined: 26 Sep 2006
Posts: 131
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2007 6:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also lost my middle lobe to cocci. For three weeks before surgery I, and the doctors were extremely concerned that it was cancer. Biopsy was inconclusive and my lymph nodes seemed to be "involved". A pet scan showed activity surrounding the nodules. Three days after the lobectemy the pathology report said cocci. The lymph node they removed was full of granuoles. The lobe was black and covered with granulomas. The rest of the lung looked healthy, so he removed the lobe, even though the fast biopsy (while I was still in surgery) was negative for cancer. I was kept in isolation for three days since there was a slight possibility I had an active case of TB. Hospital policy....
Six months later I am doing really well. However, I can assure you I will never vacation in Arizona again!!! Living in Michigan, I had never heard of Valley Fever. The Southwestern tourism industry keeps this secret very well!!
Anyway, I wish you well.
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Windwalker



Joined: 22 Apr 2006
Posts: 31
Location: Queen Creek, Arid-zona

PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2007 8:17 am    Post subject: doc appt results Reply with quote

Very Happy

A very GOOD report today, for a change! My veins and arteries are amazingly clear the medicos say! Was definitely a celebration-type of day for my household and support circle.

Adjusting to no meds has been different, but I have noted the chapped lips going away --- still waiting for the hair to grow back! The joint pain in my hips has started to dissipate. Can't wait for it to all go away, but rest assured I'm being vigilant for any signs of return.

Thanks for all your good thoughts and prayers. Mine go out to all of you as well.
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stefansf



Joined: 20 Jul 2013
Posts: 2
Location: Phoenix

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 12:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a very similar experience to jmccallum and some others.

Initial complaint was pain during respiration. A visit to the doctor led to an X-Ray and a "wedge shaped nodule" was noted. Follow up CT Scan confirmed the size, 2.1 cm x 2.3 cm x 1.9 cm. No enlarged lymph nodes (Mediastinum / Hila) and blood test negative for Coccidioidomycosis.

Ended up with a CT guided lung biopsy and that tested positive for Coccidioidomycosis. Obviously relieved it wasn't cancer. I have been on 200 mg of Diflucan for about 5 weeks. The size of the nodule has not changed and I still feel the dull ache others have noted.

Being a very fit runner and hiker this has all come as a very unwelcome surprise. I am a male, in my 40's.

What happens next? To those that had a similar experience that did not require surgery, where are you now with all this? Did the nodule eventually become dormant? How long might that take?

Otherwise, I feel completely fine and am suffering zero side effects from the Diflucan.

Thanks for any help and for sharing,

Stefan
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vfs_admin_Dave
Site Admin


Joined: 19 Dec 2004
Posts: 275

PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stefansf, the time to improve is different in every VF case. While many of the symptoms are the same, the experience of VF can be different for everyone.

However it is fantastic that you are not having side effects and I hope you continue to feel well.

Best of health,
_________________
David Filip
Co-Founder of www.valleyfeversurvivor.com
Co-Author of "Valley Fever Epidemic"
www.valleyfeverepidemic.com
Join us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/valleyfeversurvivor
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stefansf



Joined: 20 Jul 2013
Posts: 2
Location: Phoenix

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all. Thought I should post a followup!

After being on 200mg of Diflucan from June until now (September) my nodule has shrunk dramatically and I am going to recover completely. The nodule is now under 1 cm (down from around 2.5cm). I believe it is .8 of a cm now. So, yea, that was scary. The biopsy was an adventure, but it all worked out.

I know you might hear a lot about folks having a bronchoscope or VATS (Video assisted thoracic surgery). That might happen, but it might also go away. So have hope!

For what it is worth, i lead a very active life. Marathon training, hiking and a red meat free, low sugar, low sodium diet. I did not experience any fatigue during the whole ordeal. So that is just some extra info.


Stefan





vfs_admin_Dave wrote:
Stefansf, the time to improve is different in every VF case. While many of the symptoms are the same, the experience of VF can be different for everyone.

However it is fantastic that you are not having side effects and I hope you continue to feel well.

Best of health,
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vfs_admin_Dave
Site Admin


Joined: 19 Dec 2004
Posts: 275

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2013 11:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is wonderful to hear and I am very happy for you.
_________________
David Filip
Co-Founder of www.valleyfeversurvivor.com
Co-Author of "Valley Fever Epidemic"
www.valleyfeverepidemic.com
Join us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/valleyfeversurvivor
View our You Tube channel: www.youtube.com/valleyfeversurvivor
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