Lung Cancer Empowerment Lead
Christine was diagnosed with Stage 4 ROS1+ lung cancer metastatic to the brain in 2015. For the first three years, she struggled with cancer-related symptoms, treatment side effects and depression. Three years later, her symptoms were under control, and Christine decided to live even for a short time. For the past three years, she started to advocate for (lung) cancer. She tried everything she could get her hands on locally, nationally and internationally. Examples include organizing local lung cancer support groups, advocacy to politicians about cancer-related issues, fundraising, being a Patient Research Advocate, grant reviewers for multiple cancer organizations, including ASCO Conquer Cancer Foundation and Lung Cancer Canada, etc.
With a Ph.D. degree in Engineering, Christine spent 20 years of her career as a professor until she took sick leave. Christine found that the advocacy and academics were so different, yet at the same time, they are so similar. Having cancer is like the second chance to live again, and Christine decided to devote herself to the cause of changing lung cancer into a chronic disease.
Connect with Christine, our Lung Cancer Empowerment Lead Christine.Qiong.Wu@outlook.com
What type of cancer and stage?
A: I was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer metastatic to the brain six years ago.
What was your treatment path?
A: I right away started with chemotherapy. After four months, it was found not working at all. Luckily, I had biomarker testing done, and I found ROS1+ mutation, of which 1% to 2% of patients have this mutation. Therefore, I started the targeted therapy, and I’m still on the drug now.
As a PEN Empowerment Lead, what are your interests and how are you helping other patients?
A: I’ve worked as a Patient Advocate and a Patient Research Advocate. So, I have experience from both sides. Specifically, I have written more than 80 articles about my experience with lung cancer. I think the worst thing a cancer patient endures is the patients feel alone and struggle by themselves. So, I’ll use my story to comfort, encourage and inspire the patients.
How has cancer affected your life?
A: Cancer turned my life upside down and my family, and my career suffered tremendously because of it. I write down my experiences, good and bad, related to lung cancer in my blog.
Where can you find my blog: Prevailing with Lung Cancer, prevailingwithlungcancer.blog
You can also reach me via Facebook: Qiong Wu or Twitter: Wi-Qiong or