Lung cancer survivor credits clinical trial for life

Georgia Dominick’s journey to MD Anderson began with unusual chest pains on what had begun as a normal August day in 2014. “It was very strange,” she says. “It started kind of near my heart, and felt like when I had pleurisy, which I’ve had a couple of times because I also have asthma. But I went to work that day feeling perfect, and it just kept getting worse and worse.” Georgia went to see her local internist immediately. He sent her to a pulmonologist, who did a bronchoscopy. The pulmonologist saw something suspicious and performed a biopsy. He also referred Georgia to an oncologist, who did a more complicated scoping procedure while she was under anesthesia. The results revealed she had stage IV metastatic non-small-cell lung carcinoma. “Honestly, I think God sent me to the doctor that day,” Georgia says, “because lung cancer doesn’t usually hurt like that.” Seeking a second opinion After Georgia’s original lung cancer diagnosis, she got more shocking news: her oncologist told her that she had only a year left to live. “I did not care for that prognosis,” Georgia says. So, Georgia came to MD Anderson on the advice of a colleague. Here, she met with Frank Fossella, M.D., and John V. Heymach, M.D., Ph.D., and underwent additional diagnostic testing to better assess her cancer. “I was diagnosed in mid-August, and I was being seen at MD Anderson by mid-September,” Georgia recalls. “It was very easy.” Exploring clinical trials at MD Anderson Once here, Georgia was asked right away to consider an immunotherapy clinical trial for her exact type of cancer. In October,...