FREMONT, Ind. (WANE) – There’s power in a ten second sound bite. Just ask the Lake family. When they saw a doctor on NewsChannel 15’s First at Five Well Being segment talk about lung cancer and how to catch it early they listened.
The Lakes often watch NewsChannel 15. They sit down to watch the top stories then usually flip to something else. One November day something stuck out to Jim Lake so he kept the news on a little longer.
“It perked my interest when I heard a doctor say ‘if you’re over 55 and smoke,’ and I listened to it,” Jim Lake said.
What he saw and heard was Dr. Ahad Sadiq urging older smokers to get CT scans regularly to help detect lung cancer early.
“I just turned to my wife, because I’ve been concerned with her smoking for years, and I said ‘will you go get that done.'” Jim said. “She said ‘yeah I’ll get it done.'”
“When I went in to have it done obviously a tumor showed up in the upper right lobe of my right lung,” Diane Lake said.
In the month that followed Diane Lake had a few more tests which confirmed it was lung cancer. Then she had surgery at the beginning of the year to remove the tumor.
“They were successful in removing the whole tumor, all of the lymph nodes are negative, so at this point I have no further treatments,” Diane said.
Diane’s cancer was caught about as early as it could be caught. It was stage one. Dr. Sadiq said more than half of lung cancer patients already have stage four cancer when they’re diagnosed.
“At stage four the cancer is already spread out and there’s no curative options,” Sadiq said.
Symptoms of lung cancer can include a constant cough and coughing up blood. To some smokers those may not seem like symptoms at all.
“People who have smoked heavily have those symptoms already,” Sadiq said. “They have the chronic smokers cough, sometimes they’ll have a cough up of a little blood here and there. People don’t take those symptoms seriously.”
“I would’ve never had the test done because I had no symptoms,” Diane said. “I had zero symptoms. We walk every day. I was not short of breath. I didn’t have a cough.”
The Lakes get emotional thinking about what could’ve been if they didn’t hear Dr. Sadiq’s advice on the show that day. With their faith in God and great doctors they’re thankful for every day they have with each other.
“This is important information for people to know,” Jim said.
Diane will continue to get the CT scan every six months for at least three to five years. She’s stopped smoking.