Lung biopsy

I’m from the Oct '17 chemo thread, I hope you don’t mind me asking a question on here, but I wondered if any of you would be able to give me some advice. My dad was recently diagnosed with cancer in his lung (just one I think) with a spread to his bones. Although he is 91, until he went into hospital 3 weeks ago he was very active-living by himself and still driving. The doctors said this would be taken into acoount. After being in more or less solitary confinement for 2wks because he had MRSA and being given lots of painkillers (prior to going to hospital he was only taking a couple of paracetamol) his condition has deteriotated, but we think it’s partly down to the hospital environment and some of his care there. The only reason he was still there was because he was offered a biopsy with the hope that he could be given some treatment to give him some extra time. (Even his onc and a nurse said to get him out asap) He has had his biopsy cancelled several times this week after he’d already started fastening. He was meant to have one yesterday pm, but because he answered ‘probably’ when he was asked if he could keep his arm behind his head for half an hour, they said they wouldn’t do it then or in the future. If they hadn’t messed around with when it was going to be done, Dad might have been able to hold his arm because I think he could when he had his CT scans. Also,Dad had a fall on Wednesday evening and was possibily stiff from that and Dad’s doctor and nurse argued about that on Dad’s behalf yesterday, but weren’t listened to. My daughter and I had a meeting with the onc because we were so upset and also angry that Dad has stayed in hospital for no reason if they won’t give him the biopsy. The onc has agreed to see Dad as an outpatient next week to see if the biopsy can possibly be re-scheduled. My dad is hopefully going to a beautiful nursing home today for some respite care, but I’m still worried his arm won’t improve. Tbh, I think I’d struggle to keep my arm up for that length of time. I wondered if anyone knew anything about the biopsy or whether there is anyway it could be adapted to accomodate Dad-could he be sedated for prior to it for example?  Thank you x

Goodness me poor chap, it sounds as if the hospital aren’t doing their best for him holistically, and departments only looking at their own bit. 

As for the Liver Biopsy … Half an hour seems an awfully long time, and the procedure should take less than 10 minutes to complete. I don’t actually remember having to put an arm behind my head at all, and I know I held my friends hand with my left hand for the whole time. The key reason why they cannot use anaesthetic/ sedation, is because at the moment they need to take the liver sample you have to take a deep breath in and hold your breath.


I think guidance from the oncology team is the key thing. What treatment are they planning…and do they consider that your dad will be fit enough and able to cope with that and any side effects, and what benefits will it give him. Then you can all decide what is really the best next steps.