There are some moments in your life no matter how old you are that you can never forget. I’ll never forget the morning that my grandfather passed away. I don’t remember how old I was but I was really young. It was a gloomy morning and still very early, the morning sun was barely coming through the windows. I can’t even remember the exact words my mom said to my sister but I remember it was something along the lines of “he’s gone.” Followed by tears, so many tears. My sister was hugging my mom tight as she cried in the hallway. I had never seen my mom cry before, she always had been such a strong woman. But when somebody you love dearly especially a parent passes away its enough to break the strongest person down. My grandfather was an amazing guy, my grandfather passed away from lung cancer.
This month is November and that means it’s Lung Cancer Awareness Month. I am honored to be able to team up with AstraZeneca to bring more awareness to this awful disease. Did you know that in the USA lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death for women and men like my grandfather. Lung cancer kills more than breast, colorectal and prostate cancer combined. This accounts for 154,000 deaths each year and just about one-quarter of cancer deaths. In fact just this year alone it was estimated that 234,000 people will be diagnosed with lung cancer. Many not having a clue that lung cancer isn’t just one disease, there are many different types with each one having its own category and different subtypes within it. About 80 to 85 percent have (NSCLC) non-small cell lung cancer. There are four main stages of NSCLC which are determined by the tumor size and what surrounding areas it has spread to like lymph nodes or other organs. Although there are many stages there are also medicines that have been proven to benefit patients with specific types of lung cancer, so if diagnosed, it is critical to understand the details of your diagnosis and talk to your medical team about what treatments are approved to treat your specific type of disease.
Each case is very unique and should be treated so. With the advancement of treatment options, it is critical for patients not to give up – to be aware of their options and talk to their doctor about what treatments may be appropriate for them.
These are all super scary thoughts and very hard to hear I know. Though my grandfather was a victim of lung cancer I had no idea that many more Americans were and will be as well. But the fight continues.
During the month of November please help me as I spread the word for Lung Cancer Awareness Month. If you’re reading this and know anyone who has been diagnosed with lung cancer it is very important that he or she becomes their own advocate, learn to understand their entire diagnosis and speak to their doctors about treatment options that best fit them. It may be too late to help my grandfather but it’s not too late to help others. Now more than ever, there’s a reason to help. Be sure to head over to LIVE W.E.L.L. and LVNG With Lung Cancer for more information.