The stories below come from men and women whose lives have been touched by lung cancer. In addition to providing unique insight on what it’s like to battle and live with the disease, each story also provides reasons to be hopeful about the future of lung cancer research.
Elizabeth was only 29 years old and was pregnant with her second child when she began having chest pains. Initially diagnosed with calcified granuloma, she was referred to a pulmonologist after her symptoms worsened. She was shocked to be diagnosed with Stage IV ALK+ lung cancer.
Amanda was misdiagnosed with lymphoma in 2015, but that didn’t mean her cancer journey was over. She continued having scans every six months to watch a spot on her lung. When three years passed and monitoring was complete, she asked for one more scan. That led to her diagnosis with Stage I adenocarcinoma.
When Steve was diagnosed with Stage 3B non-small cell lung cancer, his oncologist was confident the treatment options available would cure the disease. In eight months, he went from a 25% chance of survival to cured of lung cancer. While his cancer has recurred, he is living a full life and working full time while taking oral chemotherapy.
Lea had asthma but considered it under control. After she developed an uncontrollable cough, she was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. Biomarker testing revealed the EGRF mutation, and she has had great success on a targeted therapy.
Erika went to the hospital with a persistent cough and unbearable back pain. She came back with a stage IV lung cancer diagnosis. But thanks to research, she’s living her best life – and has started a brand to raise awareness and funds.
Joe wanted to support his 6-year-old son through a medical procedure, so to serve as a good example, he agreed to an examination of his own. The last thing he expected was to find out that he had lung cancer.
Felicia felt a bad cold coming on and decided to go to urgent care. She was surprised to find herself in the ICU with pulmonary edema, but the most shocking news came later – she had stage IV lung cancer.
Marie thought she’d dodged a bullet after her lung cancer diagnosis and lobectomy. She learned five years later that the cancer had metastasized. Her hope was renewed when she discovered she had the EGFR mutation, which could be addressed with a treatment that hadn’t even been available a few years earlier.
Elizabeth’s life took a sharp right turn when hip pain and a broken leg led to a stage IV non-small cell lung cancer diagnosis with tumors in her lung, lymph nodes, and brain. Other than the hip and leg pain, she had experienced no symptoms.
Beth’s mysterious respiratory symptoms and a stubborn “walking pneumonia” led her to the hospital and a diagnosis of advanced non-small cell lung cancer. Later testing led to a wonderful surprise: her cancer had the ROS1 genetic mutation and she was eligible for a targeted therapy. Within days of starting treatment, she began to improve.
Susan was a new mom when she was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1997. After her successful treatment, she became a strong advocate for lung cancer research and is encouraged by the advances that have been made in the past two decades.
Cassie, an elementary school teacher, was only 29 when she was diagnosed with lung cancer. Her condition was stable after surgery and chemotherapy, and she has gone on to raise over $100K for lung cancer research.