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Thread: How long does it take to be diagnosed with Brain Tumor?

  1. #1
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    How long does it take to be diagnosed with Brain Tumor?

    I'm in a state of disarray at the moment. I talked to my Mom earlier today and she seemed fine... Now all of a sudden I get a rack of phonecalls saying my Mom is in the hospital. I'm in so much shock that I dont think all the phonecalls said she may have a Brain Tumor but a couple people did say she may have a Braint Tumor. Im hoping and praying they got their info messed-up and she just has a migraine headache or something... My question is can a person be diagnosed that quick with a Brain Tumor? Is it a simple procedure or extensive?
    I just got the phonecalls approximately 3 hours ago and now its 2am... I'm gonna go to the hospital at 8am to get more info... I cant sleep now and Ive been googling Brain Tumors and this just makes me feel worse n worse... I just dont know what to do at the moment...

  2. #2
    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
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    It depend of the type and grade of the tumor. However, often the doctors have a pretty good idea just by looking at a CT or MRI scan. This could take hours to days depending on what is availableness in your area. That is, if she has an MRI today, they will have a good idea today or tomorrow. I knew that very day.

    However, to be 100% sure, they will have to do a biopsy. That could take anywhere from days to months again depending on what is available in your area. It also depends on other factors... such as special tests the doctor whats to have done with the biopsy samples. Special stains often have to be sent out to special labs and those results could take a long time to get back. My basic biopsy results were available in less than one week. Most of that wait was due to availability of a neurosurgeon and surgical room at my hospital: 2 days to get CT and MRI results, 3 days until they could do the biopsy, and 1 day to get the preliminary results. Fortunately, waiting is usually not that dangerous... again depending on specifics about size and grade of the tumor.

    Good luck and keep us informed.
    Jim
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2405
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

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    Thx for the response BrainMan. Well, I just came from the hospital from sitting with my Mom and the doctor came in to talk to us and he drew a brain illustration on the board explaining the situation. Well, my Mom has a growing mass in her brain. But like you said he gave us the idea that it is possibly a Brain Tumor. She goes for the biopsy this coming Thursday and he said this will give him the info on its grade and type.
    The info he laid upon us left me numb. And then to see the look on my Moms face and her gestures made me cry. I didn't do it in front of her, but this is heavy. She's a strong woman but I know she thinking deep about this.
    Medical expenses will become an issue. In fact, my Mom don't have medical insurance. How does the hospitals treat one that does not have medical insurance? Will she still receive treatment?
    I have questions but this is all I can think of at the moment. Thx again for your well wishes...
    --Corey P.

  4. #4
    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
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    Corey, on the financial issue I have some good news. The fact that she has Brain Cancer qualifies her for Social Security Disability AND Medicare. She could start receiving SSD within weeks. I am not sure how long before her Medicare will be available and they will not pay for past bills but it is worth looking into.

    In addition, you could call the SS office in your community and ask about the new medical insurance program. I do not know how that works. What I do not is that she cannot be denied coverage for a preexisting condition.

    Your mother will be in my prayers Thursday. I hope she gets good news.
    Jim
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2405
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

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    *Corey, on the financial issue I have some good news. The fact that she has Brain Cancer qualifies her for Social Security Disability AND Medicare. She could start receiving SSD within weeks. I am not sure how long before her Medicare will be available and they will not pay for past bills but it is worth looking into.

    In addition, you could call the SS office in your community and ask about the new medical insurance program. I do not know how that works. What I do not is that she cannot be denied coverage for a preexisting condition.*

    How long has this been the case? Is it only if you don't have coverage? I don't need it now, but who knows? I might need it in the future.

    From my own experience, though my memory is a bit fuzzy for obvious reasons, I had a CT scan initially and from that I guess they saw calcium deposits and got me into an MRI to get more specifics on it. They were pretty sure what it was, but a week later I had the surgery to get the biopsy. That was on Wednesday and I think we had the results Friday. For reference, I'm in Little Rock.

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    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
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    Greg, it has been the case since at least 2005. Naturally, the person cannot be able to work at his/her previous occupation/profession/job.

    I am not sure if the new national health insurance program is already functioning or is one of those things Congress approves but sets to start at a future date.

    BTW, good to hear from you
    Jim
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2405
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

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    Jim, the bad news is building. After the biopsy last Thursday the docs allowed my Mom to go home. However, she was feeling VERY weak and throwing up so hard that her husband took her back to the Hospital. She been back in for 2 days. Its heart-wrenching to see my Mom sitting in the hospital bed. She just look different. And its hurting me sooooooo bad. I constantly ask myself am I spending enough time? Is family spending enough time? Should I tell her this?
    My Mom is strong but I see it on her face thats she scared. And that look... One that Im not used to is tugging at my soul.
    Her husband told me today that the docs told him thats its an advanced tumor... Its all over her brain... And if they did nothing she may have two months.. And if they did Chemo and radiation she may have up to a year. I'm in denial! Did they tell him right? Did he misunderstand? So Im gonna make way up to the hospital in the morning so I can talk to the doc myself... Just one month ago my Mom was healthy, talkative, and smiling...
    Are there any support groups like AA in Chicago where people that are going through this and/or been through this that meet up and talk and listen about this situation? I'm lost, distraught, depressed, lonely... This is too much! I need help!

  8. #8
    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
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    Hi Corey, I hate that your mother is declining so fast. My mother opted for no treatments. She had other health issues. She died 2 months after her diagnosis. It is a very personal decision. I am glad she let us and her doctors know what she wanted and what she did not want. If there is something "good" about brain cancer is that death is most often painless and peaceful... no matter when it comes. My mother just kept sleeping longer and longer. She died peacefully in her sleep. Unfortunately, I believe your father heard correctly

    As for your last question, I answered it on your other topic. Hope you find one.
    Jim
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2405
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

  9. #9

    Re: How long does it take to be diagnosed with Brain Tumor?

    Sorry about your Mom. On you question of a group in Chicago to get support --

    I am a Brain Tumor patient in Los Angeles and attend a support group in the Wellness Community. This center runs groups for both patients and caregivers.

    If you goggle on the Wellness Community you will find that that have a center in Chicago called "Gilda Club Chicago" 537 North Wells Street
    Chicago, IL 60610
    Phone: 312-464-9900
    Fax: 312-464-1487

    Hope this helps.

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    Thx Solargo and Jim... I'm gonna look into those groups immediately...

    I'm also here to say that I just gotta call from my aunt 5- minutes ago... She said my Mom also got Lung Cancer... From what I've researched, that must be Mestatic Cancer since its spreading? The Doc wants the family to meet at the Hospital at 9am Wednesday...

    Im going to get drunk tonight... This is too heavy to deal with right now...

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    Is it advisable to let my Mom know that she also has Lung Cancer?

    I jus called the Solargo phone and left a message. Im gonna attend their nex meeting...

  12. #12
    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
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    Ohh Corey, it sounds like you mother actually has is a Primary Lung Cancer that has metastasized to her brain. The reverse is extremely rare. Two primary cancers is also rare but not unheard of. I am very sorry about this new development.

    The more information your mother has about her health, the better her decisions can be. I know that it gave me and my dad a great sense that we were doing the right thing because my mother was calling all the shots.
    Jim
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2405
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

  13. #13
    Hi " I'm a newcomer to the board. Corey, let me first of all offer you my sympathy and best wishes for your mother.

    I'm a Brit working in the US and recently lost my Mother to a brain tumour. Your story sounds very similar to mine. About 2 months ago I had a call from my brother saying he was very concerned about my Mum as she seemed to be becoming more forgetful and he thought maybe it was early onset Alzheimer. A few days later he rang to say she had gone into her doctor's for a hearing test but the doctor was so concerned about her condition he referred her to the local hospital. Their initial diagnosis was a tumour and the prognosis was one to two months. We were both in a state of shock. She then underwent both MRI and CT scans. I returned to the UK and my brother and me saw the oncologist who said that two tumours had been detected but that a biopsy would be needed to determine the best course of treatment with chemo or radiation. We asked how much additional time this might give her and he said maybe another month. In consultation with my Mum we all agreed not to have the biopsy or any treatment. At 82 we honestly felt we could not subject her to this. She passed 3 weeks later. In the UK they have a palliative treatment plan called the Liverpool Care Pathway which means a person diagnosed as terminal can spend their final days at home amongst familiar surroundings and friends and family. The care provided by the doctors, carers and specialist Marie Curie nurses was fantastic and it was good to know she was in their hands.

    It is heartbreaking to watch someone you love succumb to this awful disease which slowly robs a person of their humanity. I saw a person who was loving, articulate, witty, intelligent and passionate about life slowly changed by this disease into someone who could hardly communicate, was unable to walk and ultimately became bed ridden. But, as Brainman says the only positive thing is that the end is peaceful and painless. The most important thing for me and my brother was being able to spend as much time as possible with my Mum and to be there when she passed.

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    Update:
    Well, things are SO declining fast with my Mom. She's now at a point where she don't have conversation. She simply answer yes or no to things. When she do talk her words are blurry. She's so weak that she can't walk: She's BedRidden. She stares and suddenly falls asleep frequently. She'll closes her eyes but the slightest sound awakes her. It's almost as if she has reverted to an infant. If asked if she thirsty, hungry, or in pain she most always say no. She has no interest in conversation. A thing stood out today: I have an older brother in Florida and he called and wanted to talk to her. She didn't really want to talk or I believe she didnt recognize him fully as her son... Two weeks ago when I tell her I love her and she'll respond with an "I Love you" back. Now when I say it she simply says "OK", this cancer is messing with my Mom perception. The doc tested her strength by asking her to push her hand against his. Instead, she lifted her hand with her other hand. And I can tell its frustrating her. I believe she does and says things so she won't feel weird... Or maybe its jus the cancer in play... She went for radiation yesterday and it seems like she VERY fatigue and tired.
    This is so soul-wrenching to watch. I pray to the lord that he sends Angels to soothe my Mom.

    Quote Originally Posted by Beaverton View Post

    It is heartbreaking to watch someone you love succumb to this awful disease which slowly robs a person of their humanity. I saw a person who was loving, articulate, witty, intelligent and passionate about life slowly changed by this disease into someone who could hardly communicate, was unable to walk and ultimately became bed ridden. But, as Brainman says the only positive thing is that the end is peaceful and painless.

    Hello Beaverton, sorry to hear about your Mum. I sympathize with you. I'm going through the same thing. The quote above is soooo true of my situation right now. My Mom is 57 yrs old, and I dont kno how much time we have left together...

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    Update: Well, my Mom is losing her hair (VERY thin). She has a VERY hard time communicating. I barely understands most that she tries to speak. She hallucinates (She put a TV Remote Control to her ear and thought it was a phone). Loss of appetite. She's weak, can't walk, and she's bed-ridden. We walk her around in a wheelchair. And she's VERY VERY demanding. One sec she wants to sit up, the next she wants to lay down. "Call someone! Turn on the light! My legs hurt! My butt hurt! Where's the nurse!" Thats goes on constantly! She seems to burst out crying and then suddenly stops. Her memory is really shattered. She forgets who comes to visit her. And she don't even know where she's at (Address or part of town the nursing home is on). However, she sometimes remembers name and phone numbers from decades ago. She recited a phone # that been in esixtence since 1988...
    She now lives in a nursing home. She can't take care of herself and her husband works so he's not there to tend to her. She been through her rounds of chemo and radiation... Im hoping she can get better or rest/sleep more so she won't be so agitated...

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    Sometimes whole brain radiation can reverse some of these symptoms for some time, but I am not sure in such advanced condition though. Hang in there, lung cancer is evil. All the best to your mother and you.

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    Update: I'm sorry to report but my Mom has died of the cancer on Oct. 16th. We just buried her Oct. 23rd. No more suffering... Thanks everyone for there help.
    --Corey

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    So sorry to hear of the loss of your mother. My thoughts are with your family in this extremely difficult time. I just lost my mother on October 7th so I know what you are going through.
    Mother diagnosed with terminal Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer 08/31/2010. Did 5 days of radiation to take away pain in her lower back and down her leg 09/16/2010. Now just spending every day with her and making new memories!

    10/7/2010- My mother is in heaven now, watching over all of us! I love you mom....

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    Im so sorry. My mom died on the same day, so I know what you're going through right now.
    __________________________________________________ ____________________
    Mother with Glioblastoma Multiforme, had surgery 4/23/07, at age 63. Survived 1272 days afterward. Her last 24 on hospice.
    Father with Glioblastoma Multiforme, had surgery 11/2/09, at age 66. Survived 433 days afterward. His last 154 on hospice.

    http://www.gildasclub.org/
    Its 100% free and offers support, networking, and social activities to cancer patients and their families and friends.

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    Administrator Top User pbj11's Avatar
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    My sincere sympathy on the loss of your mother. May God give you peace during this time of grief.

    PBJ
    Husband diagnosed with NSCLC Stage IV in 3/2005. Fought & lived over 2 1/2 years with multiple lines of treatment.

    Post describing our journey: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.ph...er=asc&start=0

    Left my embrace to live with our Heavenly Father in October of 2007 and now breathes with ease forever. I will miss this gentle, giving soul with the easy smile for the rest of my days, but have faith we will be together again. He's just getting a little break from me!

 
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