Instead, the doctor said that he wants to do another CT of the lungs, this one thorough and in detail. It's possible that it will show she's getting better, but no one seems to think that's likely. Rather, the CT will probably give them some direction in where to focus when they surgically go in and take a few samples of her lung tissue for biopsy. He said they may send the samples somewhere like the Mayo Clinic to be identified.
He said that what it looks like to him is that some foreign particles found their way into Tandra's body and have gotten stuck in the lungs. He said it looks pretty uniform throughout all sections of both lungs. He mentioned that this can happen with low quality street drugs. He asked her if she ever did any injected drugs (she has not), but said it can be inhaled as well, for example if cocaine or something has been cut with talc or something else like this.
Tandra was addicted to coke for a while, but this was nearly ten years ago.
Tandra is also reminded of a time a year or more ago when Xandria dumped out an entire bottle of baby powder on the sun porch. Tandra swept it up and cleaned it up without a mask or anything, and wound up having to go to immediate care for a breathing treatment.
Anyway, if this is the case, what happens is scar tissue builds up around the particles, and the lungs start to harden and can't do their jobs any more. There's a name for this, and he told us, but the only part I remember is 'pulmonary'. (Update - it's Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis.) When we asked him, he said these kinds of things can sometimes respond to cortizone, but that if it doesn't, it could "shorten things."
Things, as in, her life.
He also said that because she's young and otherwise healthy and has been clean and sober for a while, she'd be a good candidate for lung transplants.
I suppose it's important to mention that we really don't know enough to jump to any conclusions right now. He said there are any number of things that could present this way, and he named a list of them. But he said he would expect her to be sicker than she is with most of them, i.e. fever, tremors, etc. She's sick, but not like that. He is also trying to get all this stuff done as quickly as possible, which is worrisome.
It's pretty much impossible not to be really worried and scared right now.