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Jackie's story

Clacton cancer survivor helps launch ‘Know the Signs’ campaign

A cancer survivor from Clacton is appealing to her local community to be aware of the signs and symptoms of lung cancer, following her diagnosis 8 years ago.

Jackie, 70 of Legerton Road, Clacton is teaming up with the Essex County Council Public Health team to raise awareness of lung cancer and to show local Jaywick residents that with early detection a cancer diagnosis can have a positive outcome.

Jackie has now been cancer free for 3 years and believes that this, in part, is down to the fact that her cancer was detected early and at a stage where surgery and consequent treatment stopped it from spreading.

“I was diagnosed with lung cancer 8 years ago and it all started with pneumonia. After the pneumonia I wasn’t getting any better, I still had a cough, was losing weight rapidly and felt very lethargic and just not myself. I went back to the GP who sent me for an X-ray which showed a tumour on my lung and I was diagnosed with lung cancer.

“It wasn’t long after diagnosis that I had surgery to remove the tumour and while in surgery they found another tumour behind it so they removed that too and luckily both were malignant.”

“Following the surgery it took a long time to recover and I was taking daily tablets and was going back for x-rays every 6 months. I now go yearly for an x-ray and have been cancer free for 3 years.”

Jackie added: “I’m working with the Public Health team to share my story to help others and get cancer diagnosed early. I am a very positive person and tried to keep positive throughout, and I consider myself lucky that the cancer was found at an early stage otherwise I may not be here now. I want to show others that even if you are diagnosed with lung cancer there are lots of survivors out there, just like me.

“So I would urge anyone, if you have got any signs or symptoms, have got a persistent cough, or you are losing weight or feeling lethargic, just go round and check with your GP, it might be that you only need some cough mixture or it could be that you have got cancer, but either way, the quicker you go to your GP the quicker you can get it sorted.”