Lung cancer stories
Two different people share their stories about being diagnosed with lung cancer and what happened in their treatment. Sue had never smoked in her life and Greg had been a long-term smoker - watch their stories.
Sue's lung cancer story
Sue's lung cancer diagnosis was a shock, but she says she was lucky.
Sue was not a smoker. Her story shows the importance of finding the disease early. It highlights how a multidisciplinary team can help your treatment.
Greg's lung cancer story
Greg had always been fit and a hard worker, but after 41 years of smoking his habit reached 50 cigarettes a day.
The day he coughed up blood was the day he decided enough was enough - he quit. Shortly after, a severe coughing episode convinced Greg it was time to go to the doctor.
He was diagnosed with emphysema and a CT scan confirmed he had lung cancer.
He was referred for a breathing test which determined he was fit to undergo surgery to remove the tumour.
For the next 15 days he underwent 18 treatments.
Greg's smoking habit
Greg knew that smoking was killing him. Smoking causes lung cancer and an array of other diseases. In Australia, tobacco smoking causes about 90% of lung cancer in men and 65% in women.
Greg quits smoking
Greg decided to quit after being unwell for a period of time. Quitting smoking at any time is a positive change. Even after a lung cancer diagnosis, quitting smoking further improves the chance of survival.
Greg's lung cancer diagnosis
Greg experienced symptoms but did not seek medical attention straight away. The chance of surviving lung cancer is best when the cancer is diagnosed at an early stage.
Greg's lung cancer treatment
Following a breathing test, it was determined Greg was fit for surgery. Had Greg continued to smoke, he might not have been fit for surgery. Lung cancer can be treated, and surgery markedly increases the chance of survival for people with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Greg's life after lung cancer
Greg's chance of survival increased substantially after undergoing surgery. In NSW, only about 17% of people diagnosed with lung cancer live for at least 5 years after diagnosis. If lung cancer is diagnosed at an early stage and is suitable for surgery, surgery can improve the 5-year survival rate to around 66%.
Greg has recently celebrated his 5-year anniversary since diagnosis and is happy he has been able to walk his three grandchildren to school.