My Knight Cancer Story

Mary Milligan, Portland, Oregon

My Lung Cancer Story

I moved to Portland in February 2008. Six weeks later, I found out I had non-small cell lung cancer.

When I met with a medical oncologist at OHSU Knight Cancer Institute, he had to break the bad news to me that my cancer had progressed. We discussed my options, including clinical trials. My husband and I looked for trials everywhere and eventually found one for the drug Tarceva for patients with the same genetic mutations as mine. Even though it was a long shot, I fit the genetic profile. Dr. Sandler was excited – I pictured him jumping up and down. I started a couple of days later and that is where I am now.

The doctors at OHSU were great about cooperating and sharing test results. Everyone in the lung cancer clinic, from the person who takes your temperature and weighs you, to the nurses and front desk staff is helpful and supportive. The beautiful facility helps, too, with the windows and the natural light.

Even though you’re there for cancer treatment, they make it as good as it can be.