Jeanne B., MA
During the last week of the summer in 2014 I was feeling like I had the flu. The problem was I kept getting sicker with each passing hour. After feeling this way for four days, never being one to rush to a doctor, I went to the local emergency room.
There it was suspected that I had a blockage of some kind, but due to the fact that this was a community hospital they didn't have an MRI machine so I was transferred to a Boston hospital. There all kinds of tests were performed yet nothing showed anything that would explain my condition. I was getting worse by the hour and no one had any idea what was wrong.
Fast forward five days later, still hospitalized, the doctor was without explanation when he asked where I lived. After I disclosed that I lived in a wooded area the doctor did a test for Lyme and sure enough my diagnosis was handed to me.
Fast forward two months. My phone rings and it is a gastroenterologist fellow from the same Boston hospital calling. He explained that he was looking through my case file and noticed that when I was being checked for whatever was wrong with me two months prior, the MRI showed a spot on my lung that I should have checked. So I went to a pulmonary doctor for CT scans that then spanned for the next two years. No change they kept telling me then on my last scan, and I mean last because it had been two years with no change so it was to be my last when everything changed.
The spot grew and within two weeks I was having a wedge resection of my right lung and I was given a stage 1 lung cancer diagnosis. No symptoms, no signs, no nothing. Just Lyme Disease two years earlier was the tap on my shoulder that my life would be saved.
Had I ignored or worse yet not received that phone call from a person designated to be my hero angel I may not be able to write to you today. With proper screening lives can and will be saved I am forever grateful for the opportunity to spread the word that screening saves lives. I am living proof.
Double Your Donation Today
This #GivingWeek, your donation means more than ever. Your support goes directly to our clean air and lung health initiatives, including ending COVID-19.
For a limited time every gift you make will be matched up to $100,000.
Thank you! You will now receive email updates from the American Lung Association.