Afraid

I have never forgotten what an older man said to me fifteen years ago: He noticed I was smoking and he said, “you know it’s not that smoking WILL KILL YOU, it’s that smoking takes ITS TIME killing you”. I’ve never forgotten those words and now they mean something to me.

I am 60, been smoking since 16. I have now contracted pneumonia and have had it for close to two months. COPD (un-staged) and bronchi infection of some sort. I had been short of breath for a few months but didn’t want to go to the dr. He told me last year I had COPD and needed to stop smoking. I didn’t.
Now they want to do a lung biopsy Friday. I am afraid.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The COPD.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

View Comments (16)
  • longlegdog author
    7 months ago

    Well it seems I have AFB, non-TB. My pulmonologist has an Infectious Disease Doctor calling me to make an appt. Of course I googled AFB and saw it linked to NTM. I’ve been trying to get over pneumonia for a couple of months and had been told I had COPD. Now this from a lung biopsy.
    I am worried and wish I knew what was next. My doctor has me on an antibiotic. Can anyone suggest additional information?

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    7 months ago

    Hi again longlegdog and thanks for the update. When you use the acronym NTM – are you referring to nontuberculous mycobacteria? You may realize we cannot provide medical advice or diagnostics over the internet – this is for your own safety. Although it’s good to familiarize yourself with these conditions from ‘Dr. Internet”, I would caution you against using the internet as a ‘fill-in’ for your physician. You will definitely want to spend as much time as possible with your pulmonologist and infectious disease physician. They will be your best resource to learn all about the condition and the prospective treatment. We are always here for you and will look forward to hearing more about your progress. Hang in there! Warm regards, Leon (site moderator)

  • longlegdog author
    8 months ago

    I went to the pulmonary doctor and I’m going to have to call them Monday to find out what exactly he said I had. It was a three letter thing and he said it’s like TB but it’s NOT. He also said it’s not contagious. He gave me an antibiotic to take for 20 days and is making an appt for me with an Infectious Disease Dr. He has a very thick accent and I didn’t really understand what the three letters are. He also said something is “spongy” and I had cells that can turn into cancer. While I’m short of breath sometimes but I don’t have a cough. Does anyone have any idea what he could have been talking about?

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Hi longlegdog and thanks for sharing your situation with the community. We cannot provide medical advice or diagnostics over the internet (for your own safety), but your concerns certainly warrant a reply. The three-letter acronym you’re looking for could be anything based on the symptoms you described (pre-cancerous cells, shortness of breath, absence of coughing and a ‘spongyness’). It’s very prudent for you to return to the doctor for more of an explanation – please do check back and let us know how you’re doing. The infectious disease physician may also be able to shed more light on your present condition. Wishing you the best, Leon (site moderator)

  • luvmylife1948
    8 months ago

    I felt the same way when my husband had to have a biopsy. AFRAID. My husband was a heavy smoker for 28yrs. and then gave up SUDDENLY. He went on to be diagnosed with MESOTHELIOMA. Lung cancer in the lining of the lung caused by inhaling Asbestos in the workplace as a carpenter. The disease takes 40yrs. to develop and is incurable. The Oncologist said my husband did not get cancer from smoking. It was the asbestos that caused him to be terminal.
    To anyone going through this FEAR It is not easy. IT HURTS. but in time you recover one day at a time.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Hi luvmylife1948 and thanks for sharing your experience with your husband, mesothelioma and fear. It’s very helpful to learn about what others in our community are going through, how to handle it, and the suggestions being made. We appreciate what you have to say. Warm regards, Leon (site moderator)

  • longlegdog author
    8 months ago

    PhylisD. Thank you so very much for your support

  • PhylissD
    8 months ago

    longlegdog, most smokers had attempted to quit multiple times before succeeding. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Every attempt brings you one step closer to success. I once thought I would not be able to quit, but it has been a little over 2 years since my last cigarette and smoking is the last thing I want to do now.
    I know being newly diagnosed is scary. But there is support out there for you – like right here! Good luck with the biopsy and stay in touch.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Thanks for your comment, PhylissD, we appreciate your input.
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • WillDoe
    8 months ago

    The best in your biopsy results, longlegdog, that is something that I have yet to face.
    I was smoking since I was 13. I am now 62 and just quit last March.

    And the best against the pneumonia as well!

    willdoe

  • longlegdog author
    8 months ago

    I’m 60, same story. I get results on 7/5. I CANT QUIT smoking! I’ve tried everything, I just can not do it for more than 24 hours

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Hi again, longlegdog and thanks for your post. We’re happy to be of assistance – it’s one of the main reasons we’re here. Wishing you well.
    Leon (site moderator)

  • longlegdog author
    8 months ago

    Thanks for all the support I’ve receivef. You guys are awesome and I surely need your encouragement

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Hi again, longlegdog – We hear you. As Lyn said, it’s not easy, but it is do-able. Be persistent, keep at it -eventually you will succeed. It may take you some time, but you can do it!!
    Good luck with your visit on 7/5. We’ll look forward to hearing back from you.
    Warmly,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Lyn Harper, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Hi longlegdog – Don’t be too hard on yourself! Quitting is one of the hardest things a person does. The fact that you can do it for 24 hours is something. My suggestion would be too take baby steps. Go from 24 hours to 36 to 48 and so on. Once you can go a couple of days, you can turn that into a week. I’m confident you’ll be successful. But, dont’ be discouraged if you have some slips – it happens. You just have to move on and start again.

    I highly recommend getting rid of all tobacco products in your house. Make it as difficult as possible to smoke. Many of my friends that have quit have said that was a big help.

    I wish you the very best success!!

    Regards,
    Lyn (site moderator)

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    8 months ago

    Hi longlegdog and thanks for your post and for sharing so candidly your history and current situation. It’s perfectly understandable the anxiety you’re feeling about going to see your physician. We are here should you need our assistance and/or support. This sounds like it should be the logical next step to determine what is going on now and then set up suitable treatment. We wish you luck. Please do check back and let us know how you’re doing. Warmly, Leon (site moderator)

  • Poll