Blog: Decoding the Research

Share Your Story: Rose

Published: June 10th, 2014

Did you know that 1 in 5 people who are diagnosed with lung cancer never smoked? However, 86% of people associate lung cancer with smoking. Anyone can get lung cancer – read the following from Rose, a never-smoker, who shared her lung cancer story with UALC:

"I am a two time survivor of non-small cell adenocarcinoma of the lung. I have never smoked but my oncologists say it was caused by second hand smoke. My left lower lobe was removed in 2011. The tumor that was discovered then took up the whole lobe of my lung. My young GYN doc discovered it! In Jan. of [2013] the cancer showed up again and in March all of the rest of left lung was removed.

My pulmonologist was against the surgery. He said he thought I would struggle for breath getting from the bed to the bathroom if I went through with it. That has not been the case though! I have not used oxygen in many months and will be walking in a 5K race this coming weekend. I attribute this to much prayer and support by family and friends, a fantastic surgeon, and a wonderful new Outpatient Oncology Rehab program at our local hospital. My therapists there have helped me regain my life and I can't say enough good things about getting physical therapy after lung surgery! They will be walking in the race with me this weekend.

My oncologist only gives me a 20% chance that the cancer will not return soon as there is no targeted drug for my specific cancer and I was unable to tolerate the last experimental drug they gave me, due to some preexisting GI problems. My surgeon is much more optimistic though and thinks I have several more years! Either way I am very grateful for the restoration of my energy and strength now so that I can enjoy all the activities I love with the people I love!
Thank you for this organization and getting the word out about lung cancer. I am a 63 year old grandmother but I hear of so many much younger than me that are not getting to live the long lives they were intended to have due to lung cancer. Organizations like yours (UALC) are making a difference for all of us!!!"
Picture: Rose after finishing a 5K this past Fall 2013!

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Find more lung cancer facts here.