Support from Day One: Turning a lung cancer diagnosis into action
An EACH Breath Blog series connecting lung cancer patients with resources
To say receiving a lung cancer diagnosis is overwhelming is an understatement. The day you hear those words, your life changes forever. Once you've had a moment to process the diagnosis, it is natural to think "Now what?" Many patients and their concerned families take to the internet looking for guidance and answers. Some patients prefer to defer to their medical teams and never spend any time researching on their own. Both options have pros and cons. It can be hard to know how to find trusted, accurate information on the internet and frankly, it can be a scary place. However, patients who are more informed often get better quality care and feel more in control of their situation. Doctors and nurses are highly educated, but when you combine their knowledge with an informed patient, that is where the magic happens.
There are many decisions to make when you receive a lung cancer diagnosis. Some of these decisions are more time sensitive than others. The American Lung Association recognizes this and the enormous amount of information being presented to patients at appointments. That's why we've tried to make it as easy as possible to answer the question: "What do I need to know?"
In an effort to improve the lung health of Americans, the American Lung Association is proud to serve as the nation's premier resource for lung health information, and our navigator tool on Lung.org/lung-cancer is a perfect place to start. By selecting "I am newly diagnosed" from the drop down menu, you are immediat ely taken to the most important and relevant information for you. The brief amount of time it will take you to read through the pages picked just for you, can have an enormous impact on your lung cancer treatment and quality of life.Ready to dive deeper? Following the links to the resources on each page will take you to even more information about each topic. Whenever you are ready for more information, the patients section of Lung.org/lung-cancer is there for you.
What are some examples of the most important information you need to know?
Learning about topics like tumor testing, immunotherapy and clinical trials will help you get the best care available to you. Understanding palliative care and the support resources available will help you maintain a high quality of life. And knowing the questions to ask about treatment will help you stay organized and feel confident in your treatment decisions.
If you are facing a lung cancer diagnosis, don't get stuck sifting through the large amounts of information on the internet. Start at Lung.org/lung-cancer, where we've curated the information you need to know right away and delivered it in an easy-to-understand way. Becoming an informed patient will help you take the action to get the care you need.