B.C. woman must seek treatment overseas for inoperable lung cancer

Fundraising page launched on Karen Sorensen’s behalf, with a goal of $250,000

Kara Sorensen, diagnosed with lung cancer in July, says it’s important for people to view her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick. (Photo courtesy of Karen Sorensen)

Kara Sorensen, diagnosed with lung cancer in July, says it’s important for people to view her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick. (Photo courtesy of Karen Sorensen)

A Vancouver Island woman is willing to go the distance to overcome cancer, and her community is standing strong behind her.

Kara Sorensen was diagnosed with lung cancer in July 2020, after discomfort in her left shoulder.

“It was shocking,” Sorensen said, explaining that at first, she thought the symptoms could have stemmed from issues with her gall bladder. “After some tests we found that it wasn’t related, and then I had a chest X-ray and that’s when they discovered the mass on my lung.”

After hearing the news, Sorensen said she and her family experienced fear and denial.

“You just can’t believe something like this happening to you. I’m a massage therapist, am health conscious, I eat a good diet, do cleanses, all of that, and I ended up with cancer,” said Sorensen.

RELATED: Campbell River teen on the mend a year later

RELATED: Young Ladysmith skater watches and waits in battle against cancer

Sorensen has taken a holistic approach, working with naturopaths, acupuncturists, and massage therapists, along with receiving a combination of immunotherapy and chemotherapy treatments.

However, after four rounds of chemotherapy, Sorensen was disappointed to discover the treatments were not successful, and the cancer progressed. The mass has spread to the lining of her left lung, which has resulted in fluid building up in the pleural cavity.

“Because of the pleural involvement, it is considered advanced and inoperable,” said Sorensen.

Sorensen is now confronted with a challenging situation, forced to seek further options that are unavailable in Canada. Sorensen is hoping to go overseas to receive specialized treatment from a residential cancer treatment centre, however the costs are not covered by insurance.

A GoFundMe page has been started on Sorensen’s behalf, and has so far raised $96, 567 of its $250,000 goal.

“These centres are costly, yet have high success rates in treating cancer. I know of somebody who was diagnosed at the same time as me with the same cancer, who has been at a clinic in Germany since July, and although $150,000 in, his cancer is almost gone,” she said on the fundraiser page. “I am hoping for the same opportunity and outcome.”

Sorensen said she was touched that her colleague, Dresden Varney, started the page and has been overwhelmed by the support from friends, family and community.

“People are so generous and caring. I am inspired by the good in humanity. People do their best to support each other and I really feel that. I went from feeling weepy, to crying about the kindness shown from others when this started,” said Sorensen.

Varney knew people would want the opportunity to give back to Sorensen.

“Kara is not from this planet, she is otherworldly. I had no idea someone could radiate so much sunshine from their skin,” said Varney. “Being a massage practitioner, she has helped so many people along on their healing journeys, and seeing the success of the fundraiser is both a testament to how incredible Kara is, and to how amazing people are. There is an innate desire in people to help out.”

The cancer journey has been “an emotional roller coaster” for Sorensen, but she is feeling encouraged and excited to explore further healing opportunities, and says it’s important for people to see her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick.

To donate visit www.gofundme.com/f/help-kara-sorensen-heal.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.


Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary. March 2021. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Reports of student attendance ‘dwindling’ at Surrey schools: teachers’ association

STA president said he’s heard from staff that students might not attend in-person for 4th quarter

(Photo: MOSAIC/Facebook)
Organization receives $10K from B.C. government to tackle racism in Surrey, White Rock

Funding to go toward forum for International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

A police officer aims a radar gun at oncoming traffic during a school-zone speed trap traffic blitz outside Peace Arch Elementary in 2017. (File photo)
White Rock council heeds residents’ plea for better speed signage

Roper Avenue concerns note proximity of two elementary schools

Rainbow trouts thrashing with life as they’re about to be transferred to the largest lake of their lives, even though it’s pretty small. These rainbows have a blue tinge because they matched the blue of their hatchery pen, but soon they’ll take on the green-browns of their new home at Lookout Lake. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
VIDEO: B.C. lake stocked with hatchery trout to delight of a seniors fishing club

The Cherish Trout Scouts made plans to come back fishing soon

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

B.C. homeowners are being urged to take steps to prepare for the possibility of a flood by moving equipment and other assets to higher ground. (J.R. Rardon)
‘Entire province faces risk’: B.C. citizens urged to prepare for above-average spring flooding

Larger-than-normal melting snowpack poses a threat to the province as warmer weather touches down

Vancouver-based Doubleview Gold Corp. is developing claims in an area north of Telegraph Creek that occupies an important place in Tahltan oral histories, said Chad Norman Day, president of the Tahltan Central Government. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO)
B.C. Indigenous nation opposes mineral exploration in culturally sensitive area

There’s “no way” the Tahltan would ever support a mine there, says Chad Norman Day, president of its central government

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Stz’uminus Elder George Harris, Ladysmith Mayor Aaron Stone, and Stz’uminus Chief Roxanne Harris opened the ceremony. (Cole Schisler photo)
Symbolic red dresses rehung along B.C. highway after vandals tore them down

Leaders from Stz’uminus First Nation and the Town of Ladysmith hung new dresses on Sat. April 17

A Western toadlet crosses the centre line of Elk View Road in Chilliwack on Aug. 26, 2010. A tunnel underneath the road has since been installed to help them migrate cross the road. Saturday, April 24 is Save the Frogs Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Progress File)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of April 18 to 24

Save the Frogs Day, Love Your Thighs Day and Scream Day are all coming up this week

Local carpenter Tyler Bohn embarked on a quest to create the East Sooke Treehouse, after seeing people build similar structures on a Discovery Channel show. (East Sooke Treehouse Facebook photo)
PHOTOS: B.C. carpenter builds fort inspired by TV’s ‘Treehouse Masters’

The whimsical structure features a wooden walking path, a loft, kitchen – and is now listed on Airbnb

The Attorney General’s Ministry says certain disputes may now be resolved through either a tribunal or the court system, pending its appeal of a B.C. Supreme Court decision that reduced the tribunal’s jurisdiction. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Court of Appeal grants partial stay in ruling on B.C. auto injuries

B.C. trial lawyers challenged legislation brought in to cap minor injury awards and move smaller court disputes to the Civil Resolution Tribunal

Most Read