November 8 2023

Sandie’s Story

In 2016, Sandie visited her G.P. for what seemed like a minor discomfort. Little did she know that this would be the moment her life would take an unforeseen turn.

A shocking diagnosis of mesothelioma—an aggressive malignant cancer caused by exposure to asbestos—with a mere 18 months to live. It was discovered that she had contracted mesothelioma working in an office in the 1980’s that was known to have had asbestos in the building.

Confronted with the dire prognosis, Sandie made the decision to undergo radical surgery – an Extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP). This highly invasive surgery involves removal of the diseased lung, part of the pericardium, (membrane covering the heart), part of the diaphragm (muscle between the lungs and the abdomen), and part of the parietal pleura (membrane lining the chest). The treatment also involves both radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

Sandie was put in touch with ADDRI on the day she was told she had mesothelioma. Our nurses supported her through the surgery and post-surgery rehabilitation and stayed in touch on a weekly basis. They encouraged Sandie to attend the EPP Meetings where she could meet people who shared her experiences; where she could find support, care and laughter. Importantly, they directed her focus to the future, on doing positive things and working to regain an active lifestyle.

Today, almost 6.5 years on from her diagnosis, Sandie is going strong! She is a wonderful advocate for ADDRI, rallying her friends and family each year to support ADDRI during our Meso March and the annual City2Surf.

“With the support that ADDRI offers, you feel like you’ve got a bit of a family around you to try and help you through something that’s completely bewildering.”

Listen to Sandie’s story

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