I was in an automobile accident in November, 2003. as a result of some pain, I went to an emergency room to check and see if I had broken a rib. The good news was that I hadn’t–the bad news was that the x-ray caught a spot on my lungs, and it was suggested to me that I have it checked out. An MRI revealed a large tumor above the heart, and a bunch of smaller spots in both lungs. The ultimate diagnosis was malignant thymoma. After inconclusive results from lung biopsies (which were surprisingly painful), I decided to do a thymectomy. The main tumor was removed, along with 2 quarts of fluid. There were something like 28 nodules in both lungs, and seedlings in the pericardium. After surgery, I went to see Dr. Loehrer. He suggested a regimen of cysplatin, cytoxin and adriamycin (forgive the spelling). We embarked on 6 doses, but after 3 it was recognized that the tumors weren’t responding, and the side effects were bad. So all involved suggested I discontinue. Since the tumors are throughout my lungs, further surgery or radiation is not an option.

Today, most of my symptoms are related to surgery and chemo. Because western medicine suggests a wait and see approach, I keep healthy with macrobiotics, herbs, immune-bolstering herbs, qi gong, Pilates and colon cleansers. 5 oncologists predicted about the same prognosis, 2-5 years. If they are correct, it would now be 6 months-4.5 years. But hey, who’s counting? My overall health is pretty good when I stick to my diet and take the above approaches. When I don’t, I feel weaker and more tired. I also belong to the local Gilda’s place, which I can’t say enough about. Support groups provide me with valuable information and an outlet for my emotions. I also see a therapist once a week. And my grandkids (17 month-old twin boys and another on the way) seem to act as energizer bunnies.

Any feedback or recommendations is appreciated.

Ann J. Christian