A north-east man whose wife survived a rare form of cancer thanks to it being found early has backed a national campaign.
Steve Hugill from Stonehaven is supporting the Detect Cancer Early scheme after Jackie was diagnosed with carcinoid of the lung in July 2014, an unusual type of the disease.
The Scottish Government campaign aims to drive home how fear of cancer diagnosis should not stop people getting checked out.
Jackie, a mum of two, visited her GP after a friend said she should get her persistent cough checked out.
Although consultants reassured Jackie the tumour was slow growing, surgery was scheduled for September 2014.
The surgeon told Jackie, who was 57 at the time, he would only need to remove the lower lobe of her right lung but during the operation they realised the tumour was larger than anticipated and the whole organ had to be taken out.
Steve, 65, said: “We were on a caravan holiday with friends, one of whom is an X-ray technician.
“She insisted Jackie got her cough checked out, so she made an appointment with the GP when she got home.
“The GP sent her to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary for X-rays and seeing them was quite a shock because we could just see a blip on her lung but didn’t know what it was.
“When we spoke with the surgeon he explained that although the tumour was slow-growing, he wanted to remove it to stop any further growth.”
Keep up to date with the latest news with The Evening Express newsletter
Speaking about the importance of attending screening and acting early on any unusual changes to your health, Steve said: “Without a doubt go to your GP and get anything that’s worrying you checked out. You’ll never know until you go and speak to someone.
“Even though it was an unsettling time, things turned out well for Jackie and we still do everything we used to like going out for walks together and she’s still always running around keeping herself busy.”
Following the surgery Jackie, who is now 62, went on to make a complete recovery, but said it was a tough time for the family. She said: “My son and daughter found that time really tough as well, as my ex-husband, their dad, passed away about six months before I found out about my tumour. As a mum you often hide difficult things from your kids but this was something I had to be honest with them about.”
Jackie urged anyone who notices any changes to visit their GP straight away.
She said: “Go and see your doctor as soon as you, or someone else notices something different. If you don’t go you may not have a future and I’m living proof, it’s not always bad. Steve and I might have ended up spending our first wedding anniversary in high dependency but we’ve never looked back.”
For more information about the campaign visit getcheckedearly.org