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Andy PhD DABT
Andy PhD DABT, Toxicologist
Category: Health
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Experience:  Board certified with 20 years in research or consulting
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I have terminal progressive asbestosis, would you recommend

Customer Question

I have terminal progressive asbestosis, would you recommend CAT scans, x-rays, lung function test? If so how often?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Brims replied 2 years ago.

Dr Brims :

Hello, welcome to Justanswer, I will try to assist you with your medical question, and any medical information you seek

Dr Brims :

These can me done every 6 months

Dr Brims :

Just to monitor progresion

Dr Brims :

x rays

Customer:

why after lung function test, I cough up blood for weeks

Dr Brims :

Lung function tests may be done if you have a change in symptoms

Customer:

Why would I want to suffer and spend the money if there is no cure. Been told, they can only keep me confortabe by medication

Dr Brims :

It helps to monitor if there are any significant changes

Customer:

I've had this since 1995 and for the last 5 years,symptoms have only got worse. I'm 80 years and the money and pain after test are not worth it

Dr Brims :

I understand

Dr Brims :

Then you may ask your doctor if you can avoid the tests, I think he will understand

Customer:

Sorry, I have ask my doctor and wanted 2nd opinion

Dr Brims :

Ok

Dr Brims :

Is there anything else you would like me to answer on this topic?

Customer:

Sorry not satisfied with answer. Sorry to take your time

Dr Brims :

I'm not sure what other questions you want me to answer?

Dr Brims :

I believe I have answered your original question

Customer:

no, not really.

Dr Brims :

You said how often and for what purpose

Dr Brims :

I said every 6 months , and to monitor disease progression

Customer:

That's not really an answer

Dr Brims :

If you are not satisfied it is likely because it is not what you wanted to hear, not because my answer is inaccurate

Dr Brims :

Then I think in the future you should be more specific about what you are looking for in your question

Customer:

Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX somewhere else.

Dr Brims :

Have a nice evening

Expert:  Andy PhD DABT replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

I sorry I am not a physician, I am a toxicologist, but wanted to add to the conversation. Perhaps part of the reason for the tests is to see if your disease has progressed to mesothelioma in which case they may want to give you chemotherapy or consider other therapies.

It sounds like you are asking more about the quality of life of the benefits from having the tests done vs. not having to go through with the tests. At 80 years old this seems like a reasonable conversation to have. As I said I am not a physician so I can't talk about the treatments for your disease, but it seems to me that you will have to answer the question of what you want to do with the rest of your life, a question only you can answer.

Are you receiving any treatments now, or are they just monitoring you through these tests?

Take care,
Andy
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
yes and no/ If any good could come from more test I would agree but no cure or treatment so why go through the pain cause meand at my age would not go throuh radiation or chemo. It's not how long I live but the quality. Really don't want to know if it turns into cancer.
Expert:  replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

It seems there are some treatment options, they won't make your condition better, but will help improve your comfort (http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/asbestosis/DS00482/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs)(http://www.ucsfhealth.org/conditions/asbestosis/treatment.html). The tests are used to determine how severe your condition is and if you would benefit from treatments. The treatments can include medications used for asthma or supplemental oxygen, and antibiotics when you get respiratory infections. I think you should talk to your doctor about any treatment options you might have, including supplemental oxygen and ask them to run the tests as infrequently as possible. Maybe they would agree to letting you not take the tests if you were to let them know if your symptoms got worse, beyond a certain point, like getting tired while walking short distances. Hopefully they would agree to that so that you don't have a fixed schedule for the tests, but base it on how you are feeling.

Your treatment options are pretty much just to make you feel more comfortable, they are suppose to improve your quality of life. However if the tests are really bothering you, then maybe you can take them based only on how you are feeling.

You are in control of your own body, you can always refuse treatment/tests, but the treatments might help you feel better and improve your quality of life.

Take care,
Andy
Andy PhD DABT, Toxicologist
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 110
Experience: Board certified with 20 years in research or consulting
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Andy PhD DABT
Andy PhD DABT
Board Certified Toxicologist
57 Satisfied Customers
Board certified with 20 years in research or consulting