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Joyce P.

LUNG FORCE Hero Joyce P.

I had always considered myself to be a healthy person. Yet in April 2017 I went for my yearly physical. I had noticed my breathing was off, yet I attributed it to the fact that we had a new dog. I fully expected to get a referral to an allergist since our dog was staying! Instead, I had to go to the hospital. My lung was collapsed, there was fluid and I was diagnosed with Stage 4A lung cancer as a non-smoker.

This diagnosis was devastating to myself and my family and friends. Early on I made the decision to go to Dana Farber in Boston. I was lucky enough to be able to take a new chemo pill that has worked incredibly well for me. I am working full time and feel great! My hope is that people will get screened for early detection of lung cancer with a CT scan, just like they get mammographies and colonoscopies as part of routine checkups.

I want to prevent people from finding out they are at a late stage of cancer like I did, when early detection tests are available. That is my hope for the future.

First published: December 5, 2018

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