Episode 63: From Misdiagnosis to Targeted Therapy, Aurora’s Lung Cancer Story

This episode features Aurora Lucas sharing her experience navigating stage 3A lung cancer, starting from her symptoms and misdiagnosis to her eventual diagnosis and targeted therapy. She shares aspects of her story that all of us can relate to: insurance problems, delays, being rushed into life altering decisions, and more.. She also talks about the impact of her diagnosis on her fertility and the decision to undergo fertility treatments before starting treatment. She highlights the need for open conversations about taboo topics like fertility in young cancer patients. Today Aurora is active in patient advocacy and shares her story with the hope that listeners like you can find comfort and community in this tough diagnosis.

About our guest

Aurora hails from the land of 7,000 islands, the Philippines. Having left her country at the age of 9 and becoming a part of the Filipino diaspora, Aurora continues to see the world from different perspectives. She is fluent in Tagalog, English, and is learning Spanish. Aurora was diagnosed with Non Small Cell Lung cancer at the age of 28, during her 2nd year of her EdD in Leadership program. She is now 31 years old, and in the final stretch of her EdD program. Aurora is fiercely committed to co-creating conversations that are centered on serving BIPOC patients, and their communities. During her free time, she loves looking for coffee shops, journaling, taking photos and videos, as well as learning new languages. You can find Aurora on: Substack, Instagram, TikTok

Watch the video of our episode on YouTube

  • 8 minutes:

    "I remember this one resident, she held my hand and was staring at me. I thought, okay, she's trying to tell me something but can't because she's not my actual doctor. They kept staring at my hands, lifting them up, and looking at my fingers without explaining. I later found out that curving of your fingers can be a symptom of lung cancer."

  • 17 minutes:

    "I distinctly remember being told about cancer not by the healthcare system or anyone I knew. Someone recently asked me, doesn't the doctor call you for an in-person appointment? I said, no, the odds are Dr. Google is the one telling you. That's the reality."

  • 27 minutes:

    "Every time I saw that speaking up actually changed things to how I wanted, it gave me more confidence."

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