Together we will beat cancer


I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

21 Feb 2018 11:43

I know people say this all the time and it’s usually something or nothing but bear with me. For for years I’ve been going back and fore to my doctor with my chest, it started with breathing problems and a chest pain on my left side. At that point I didn’t think it was anything serious, I was told it was a chest infection and given antibiotics. Fair enough, I was happy with that diagnosis, took the antibiotics, didn’t do anything. The breathing got worse, the pain increased from my chest to chest and shoulder, I couldn’t sleep on my left side as it felt like my lungs would fill up. Left it a while went back to my doctor, sent for chest X-rays which showed nothing. I smoked heavily for 27yrs, I thought it must just be that. So let’s move on say two years ago, severe chest pains, severe cough all day every day, breathing problems, can’t sleep from the noises constantly coming from my lungs. Again doctor sends me for chest X-ray and again it’s clear, spirometry shows nothing wrong. It’s now dismissed as anxiety. I don’t suffer from anxiety, I’m the least anxious person you could ever meet. Every time I went to the doctors thereafter it’s dismissed as anxiety. So let’s move on to where I am now- I’m no longer a smoker. The chest pain on my left side is excruciating, still cough, I’m constantly bringing up mucus that tastes and smells like dead flesh, I’m constantly weak, unbelievably tired, I feel really really ill all day every day. My breathing is awful, the chest pain has spread deep into my shoulder and neck, I now have lumps in my nec currently it’s three about the size and diameter of the tops of my thumbs, they are not boils or acne, they are deep within my neck again on the left side. Every day I feel more ill than the previous, more weak, more tired. I even collapsed at home just over a week ago, I was fully conscious but couldn’t get if the floor for over an hour, my chest was in agony and I couldn’t see except for patterns instead of vision. My GP’s practice still dismiss it as anxiety, they haven’t even bothered to look at the lumps or give me any kind of physical examination. I’m now to weak and tired to even try to fight it now, I’m kinda just accepting of what will be will be. Why do GP’s do this thing of getting something in their minds and stick to it regardless of what the patient is telling them? It’s not just my GP but all the GP’s at the practice? I know my own body and what I’m feeling and now I feel I just don’t have the strength to even try to go further with this sadly. What would you do in this situation?

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

22 Feb 2018 14:32 in response to Heresy1666

Hello Heresy and thank you for your post.

I am sorry to hear about your situation. Unfortunately, I am not sure how helpful I can be.

I am not sure if your GP has sent a sample of the mucous that you are coughing up to the laboratory for analysis. In many cases a GP will refer patients with persistent unexplained symptoms to a hospital specialist for review, even if routine investigations and tests are negative. You could ask your GP why this has not been done in your case.

As you appear to have lost confidence in the GP practice you are currently attending I wonder if there is another GP practice in the area you live in that you could change to. I am afraid that the only other alternative I can think of, is to see a chest specialist privately.

There is a complaint procedure within the NHS for people if they are unhappy with their care. There is more about the complaints procedure in England on the NHS Choices website on the link here. There is more information and links to the complaints procedures in other regions in the UK on the Which Consumer Rights website on the link here.

I hope that some of this information is useful and that you get the help and support that you need.

With kind regards,


I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

22 Feb 2018 17:00 in response to Heresy1666

Hi, this is exact carbon copy of my mums symptoms and she was an ex-smoker. She had a lump on the bottom of her head/neck. She begged and pleated for biopsys to be done but was just ingnored. She passed out with the pain. Her GP said it was arthritis. My mum was convinced it was something more serious. I have had meetings with her GP and looked at mums medical notes with him. She went in or called for a home visit every single day since October 2017. Mum was initally thought to have been lung cancer but her GP said that because mum had not coughed up blood, she didnt have strong enough symptoms. She had gone from 9 stone to 4, lots of head pain, pins and needles all down her arm and leg, loss of appitite, chesty raspy cough which she had for a month or so, pain under her rib (like a pulled muscle) She had an x-ray done and had a shadow on her lungs but her GP told her (in front of a friend who witnessed) it was nothing serious. 2 days later mum was rushed to A&E. Diagnosis was CUP (Cancer of unknown Primary) You know if you dont feel right from what your body is telling you. Please Please keep pushing your GP. I am pursing with GP neglagence.

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

23 Feb 2018 10:23 in response to Heresy1666


Whilst no direct experience such as you are going through (my husband's diagnosis only took four months following his antibiotics not clearing a chest infection) I think if I were in your situation I would bypass your GP and go to A&E direct whilst you are feeling at your worst. Hopefully this would lead to full testing and find out the cause of your symptoms.  Wish you the very best of luck and if you can do come and let the forum know how you get on.  Asking for a second opinion from another GP/professional outside of your current practice if worth a go too.  Jules54

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

23 Feb 2018 11:32 in response to Heresy1666

Hi there ... please don't give up ... your Drs sound terrible and wonder where their compation has gone ... something different happened to me with pain in my hip .. for 2 years they gave me steroids and to bed me off, till l saw the Dr who was from the old school of nursing .. he pressed it an strait away told me it was a "bursa" and got treatment and it went ... 

And asked to stay in over night for my mastectomy as I suffer from low blood pressure and my gut feeling was to NOT go home ... at 3 a.m l had pains and asked them to take blood pressure and then was rushed back in to operating room because of bleed (very rare) but if I'd gone home , would never had made it back in time ... so that was just a gut feeling that saved my life ..

If I was you , I'd start the complaints procedure like nurse Mary said ... and phone McMillan and they can help advice you on changing surgerys and they are not there just for people with cancer, they will help you too ..... please don't give up ... sometimes we find strength just when we feel beaten ... 

Please try all those bits Mary put on here ... if I'd not listened to my gut feeling I wouldn't be here writhing to you ... I've got a spare pair of boxing gloves l use occasionally... let us know how you go ...❤

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

24 Feb 2019 08:11 in response to Heresy1666

I would urge you to go back your doctor and demand an MRI .my friend in Ireland who just had a new baby went to docs about same as you .she found 1 lump in her neck and today is lucky to be with us it was Gods good Grace as she had cancer all along .If it wasn't for her persistence by going every WK even though the docs were fed up wither her going to them and her telling them if they didn't do summit she wud go private .which made them afraid as if summit did show up private they wud ave been in serious trouble .I use you to go back and demand to be sent for MRI as sthese lumps can be all linked to cancer .Think off my friend and that should spare you on without her persistence she wud b dead and her child an orphan .

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

24 Feb 2019 08:30 in response to Heresy1666

Hi Hearsay xx 

Almost the same story as someone close to me xx

Finding another GPs surgery is a fab idea. cousin took my Mum to A&E with some of the same symptoms as you (her GP dismissed her symptoms as a chest infection for months). It was there that they found her cancer and that then put us onthe right track in terms of a treatment plan (otherwise she would have just been left deteriorating at home) xx I know it’s far from ideal but...if things are bad, please consider going to A&E as suggested by [@jules54]‍ ‍xx don’t wish to alarm you, of course - your symptoms may well not be down to cancer. But something is definitely going on and if your GP isn’t interested, perhaps A&E can clear things up for you xx 

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

13 Apr 2019 18:24 in response to Heresy1666

Hi there.

Having had the same symtoms as yourself.I was refered to a respiratory specialist. Said I had COPD, and given inhalers. That did not work, ended up in A@E. Found out that I had heart arrhythmia.

I spent 10 days in hospital. Blood thinners, water pills, and antihistamine tablets. 

That stopped my lungs fron hurting and inproved my lung function.

However 2 months later, back in A@E due to loss of consciousness. Stopped all the pills except blood thiners. All going well until April 2019. The lungs have started to play up again. Pain and shortness of breath. Am going back to my GP to check fungal infection, or try water tablets to see which may help.

Will post if a course of action works and improves my lung function.

I think I have lung cancer but my GP dismisses it

15 Apr 2019 11:48 in response to BattleofHastings


Given all the heart problems you have had in the past I think it would be wise not to delay going to your GP.  If you are not sure what to do you can call NHS 111  or in an emergency 999.

Take care