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nosurrender

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Reply with quote  #1 
No one will forget the day that changes their life forever.
How were you told? How did you find out?
Were you alone? Did you kind of know already or was it a complete surprise?




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nosurrender

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Reply with quote  #2 
My Gyn had me getting baselines at 34 and 35 and then he had the films read by a breast surgeon just  to be sure.

I had a couple of suspicious things that were followed but they were always ruled out. But what was different about my case was that I had a breast surgeon who already knew my breasts long before I had cancer.

The first time, was in 2001. My docs had been following a misplaced lymph node in my right breast. I went back for the six month follow up and the radiation place kept taking pictures of my left breast. I was so annoyed. I kept saying, Hello! The misplaced lymph node is on the RIGHT not the left!

Then they took me to the radiologists office and there was a lightboard behind her with all these breast films on it with red arrows and circles pointing to a spot. I remember thinking I was so glad I wasn't that woman. It turned out those were my pictures....
The radiologist said that it was probably nothing, but a shadow was picked up on the left side that wasn't on any of my previous films. She recommended I come back in a few months for a followup to see if it was still there. Then she said she would call my doctors - the Gyn and the BS.

When I walked into my house there were two messages, one from the GYN and one from the BS. BOTH wanted me to call them immediately about getting surgery asap. In fact, the BS's office said they had an opening on Friday.

I still didn't think it was anything. They reassured me that they were being extra cautious and I shouldn't worry.

I had the excisional biopsy and woke up in the ambulatory care with my BS standing there and an OR nurse next to him. The BS said, "It was small, we won't know anything until next week." The OR nurse looked at the chart and started to say, "but you did a frozen section..." but I guess my BS must have given him a look because he stopped. I had no idea what anything was back then, didn't know what to ask or what a frozen section even was.

My BS told me to go and enjoy the Labor Day weekend and forget about it. And I did.  I was really clueless.  I had a bandaid on my boob and that was about as invasive as I thought the whole thing would get. It was my last normal weekend  - my last weekend as a cancer free person.

Then, a few days later I get a call from his nurse. She said he wanted me to come in. Today. I kept saying, "Why can't i just talk to him on the phone?" and she kept answering, "How about five o'clock?" I remember saying, "this can't be good if he wants to see me." But she just said, "see you at five."

So I took a piece of paper and a pen and shoved it in my purse and drove over there. I sat down in front of his desk and he turned to grab a pamphlet from the bookcase behind him and as he did, he said, "Let me tell you about your cancer."

I was like, WHAT? I tried to write down what he was telling me.

And he told me that we were very lucky to find it because it was in an impossible spot and the radiation doc was really on her toes. It was near the chest wall. It was not the regular kind of breast cancer. I didn't know there were different kinds of breast cancer. He said I had the negative one. All of this meant nothing to me. I didn't know there were "good" and "bad" cancers.
He handed me the pamphlet from the ACS and had marked my cancer in there, it was big enough to warrant further steps, we had to decide on a lumpectomy or mast and we had to hurry.

I went home and I don't really know how I drove. I called my dad and the first thing I did was apologize to him. I felt awful having to bring this into the family. But there was a part of me that felt if someone in the family had to get cancer I am glad it was me and not anyone else.

I knew no one who could advise me. I found a group of women on the internet who really helped me. I had never been on the internet before so it was all new. I made a promise that if I survived I would never let another woman go through cancer alone like I was when I was first diagnosed.

The first time I had no idea I had cancer.

The second time, in 2007, I knew for months I had cancer but could not get anyone to listen to me. By the time they did, it had grown to 2.5 cms and had 4 positive nodes. This time, I have added on to my mission to teach women never take NO  or LET'S WAIT AND SEE for an answer.

I guess I am remembering all of this because it was in late August that I had that bad mammo and then it was Labor Day Friday I had the biopsy which I found out later the frozen section showed cancer and my BS threw the tray of instruments across the OR because he was so pissed. The day he told me about my cancer was September 6th, 2001.

Eight years  ago...

Here we are, with a beautiful site that teaches women about their cancer, empowers them to never take no for an answer and a group of wonderful sisters who have made it possible that no one ever goes through cancer alone.

We sure have come a long way!

Eight years with the "bad" one, two and a half years with the "other" one....
No Surrender, baby!


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Reply with quote  #3 
I have always had lumpy breast. In 2003 I had a lump in the right breast, it was a cyst. An ultrasound was done to determine this. About 3 months before my annual mammogram in 2004, I found a lump in the left breast, it felt very similar to the one in the right breast. I kept the scheduled mammogram that I had and had no concern whatsoever.

August 6, 2004, I will never forget that date.

Went to the appointment, had the mammogram, the ultrasound and then the Dr's chat. Same routine as the year before. After the exam and as she was putting her things away, I said, "another cyst" to which she replied, "No, you have cancer". I felt like I was having an out of body experience, but remained calm until she started showing compassion. Don't show me any sympathy or the tears will start.

She said she had two other patients she had to see and she would like to spend some time with me and would I be willing to wait? I assured her I would and she put me in another room and went to the waiting room to have my husband come in with me. The tears were gone but when he walked in my face must have been registering shock, he said, "what the h___ is going on? and she told him that I had cancer. He crossed the room, dropped to his knees and took me in his arms, with tears in his eyes he said, I wish it were me.

In about fifteen minutes she returned for me, allowed my husband to go in and stay with me while she did the biopsy and said she would send it to the lab to confirm, but without a doubt it was cancer.

The saga began from there, I am at peace now with that diagnosis, can honestly say I do not worry. I will not die until it is my time. My biggest pain is the heartbreak of losing my husband, he passed five days after I had my last treatment. I miss him so! 


jadesloge

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Reply with quote  #4 
February 28th, 2008--

Two weeks prior to this, my husband felt a lump in my breast. He asked me what it was. I was actually kind of annoyed with him and said, "why couldn't you have found it last week?" I knew I would have to go to the doctor asap, but I had a very, very busy week scheduled and didn't want to make time for it.
I did call first thing in the morning though. Saw my GYN on a Wednesday. He ordered an ultrasound and mammogram (my first mammo was 8 months prior and clear). Next day, I was there getting that done. Doctor came in and said it was highly likely to be malignant and he wanted to do a biopsy. Had that done the following Tuesday. Two days later, my husband and I went back for the results. Now, this doctor has the best bedside manner I have ever seen. He came in, took me by the hand and said very softly,"It is malignant". He explained what the report said, gave me a copy and told me he would call my GYN immediately. He did. We live 5 minutes from that office and by the time I got home there was a message from my GYN.
That was the beginning. I suppose the rest of the story is pretty similar to everyone else. Chemo, surgery, radiation, lots of crying, praying and waiting. When I finished treatment, I posed the question on this board, would my life ever go back to the way it was? A year later, it has not. There are things that resemble the old life, but it is not the same.  Whether good or bad, I will never be the same. Who could be?

Julie

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Reply with quote  #5 

Gina, great idea to start this thread.

 

I apologize in advance for this being so long...as I started to type my story, it kind of took on a life of its own...but I kept it up because it was sort of cathartic in a weird way. 

 

A Jar Of Pickles Saved My Life

 

April 2006 – One evening, I was looking for a snack that would not completely blow my diet, and decided that a pickle might do the job.  The jar was new and had been sitting in the fridge for a while, because we aren’t big pickle-eaters in my house.   I grabbed it out of the fridge and struggled for a bit to get it open.  The lid finally turned, but in the process I kind of pulled  the muscle across my upper chest.  As I massaged the sore area, I noticed a lump that seemed like it did not fit in with the other lumps around it that made up my upper rib cage.  I froze in my tracks for a second, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that it was probably nothing.  After all, I was only 37 years old, I ate right, I exercised regularly, and was generally very healthy.  I waited for a week to see if it went away, and when it didn’t, I decided I would just go ahead and get a real medical opinion so that I could stop worrying about it.  I scheduled an appointment with my GP (because this did not seem to me to be a breast issue…it was higher up on my chest, so I did not think to call my GYN…plus I just had a mammo 4 months earlier that was completely normal).  GP said that the thing might be a lipoma, but that it should probably just come out anyway, and so he sent me to a general surgeon.  I felt better when he mentioned the lipoma, and didn’t really think about it much more, except to schedule the appointment with the surgeon and set a date for the surgery.

 

May 2006 – My DH was having some issues that prompted him to go to the GP (same GP as me), who then sent him for a colonoscopy.  The Friday before Memorial Day, he had the procedure done.  Afterwards the doctor came over to us and said that he found a polyp that was too big to remove during the colonoscopy, so he took a sample and was sending it to be biopsied.  He said that it did not look good, though.  DH and I just looked at each other, and didn’t know what to say.  How could that happen to him, at only 47 years old?

 

That was the worst Memorial Day weekend ever, as we waited to get the final results.  The Tuesday after Memorial day, the doctor called to confirm that it was cancer, and referred DH to a surgeon.  (As it turned out, it was the same surgeon that I was seeing.  Go figure.)

 

June 2006 – Finally had my outpatient surgery to remove my lumpy thingy.  The surgeon said it looked like he got everything, and that it would be biopsied and I would get the results in a week or so (this was on a Thursday).  He did not say anything about cancer.  And, with DH just being diagnosed, I felt like it just wouldn’t be cancer.  It just couldn’t.  I mean, how unfair would it be to have both of us diagnosed with cancer at the same time?  But, apparently, life is not fair.  The surgeon called late afternoon on the following Monday, June 21st.  I was not home from work yet, but my husband was there and he took the call.  The surgeon told my husband that it was cancer, and that he would call back in a few hours to talk with me.  I came home from work, oblivious to the news, and DH had dinner ready (that should have been a HUGE red flag for me, LOL, but I wasn’t even thinking that the results might have come back yet.)  We sat down to dinner with the boys (who were 6 and 8 years old at the time) and we had a nice time together as a family.  Those were my last few moments as a ‘regular’ person. 

 

As we finished dinner, my husband mentioned that the surgeon had called.  I said, ‘So what did he say?’   DH shook his head, and said ‘It isn’t what we were hoping for’.  My heart sank and I think I stopped breathing for a minute.  At that moment, it was like the path I was on, the path that I had assumed I would continue traveling for the foreseeable future, just dropped off into a dark abyss. What was going to happen to me?  Was I going to be able to find a new path?  How would I do that, when it seemed that there was nothing familiar about my life anymore?

 

DH took the kids out so that I could speak with the surgeon when he called.  That is when I found out that it was Her2+++ cancer.  Of course, I had no idea what that really meant until later, but I do remember that he mentioned herceptin and said that it was a wonder drug.  That didn’t make me feel any better, though.  I cried that entire night.  It took about a week of crying every night, but eventually I worked my way out of falling-to-pieces mode, and started doing research.  Googling became invaluable for getting as much information as I could.  My best friend became my lifeline.  Internet boards helped me connect with other women who had been through it and were reassuring and supportive.  I started to feel stronger.

 

July 2006 – DH had colon/rectum resection surgery.  Thankfully, the surrounding lymph nodes that were removed tested negative for cancer.  His recovery was slow and painful, but at least it looked like he wasn’t going to need any further treatment.

 

July to August 2006 - I was having multiple other tests and biopsies done to determine extent of my issue.  Due to summer schedules and the fact that I switched to a surgeon specializing in breast issues, the process took the entire summer.

 

September 2006 – All results were finally in and it was determined that a mastectomy would not buy me much more than a lumpectomy, so I decided to go with the lumpectomy.  I had the surgery on 9/13.  The sentinel node biopsy showed a small amount of cancer in one lymph node, but it was so small that they did not take any additional nodes.  My port was placed at that time as well, so that I could start chemo as soon as possible.  At that point, I was in fighting mode and just wanted to get it all moving as quickly as I could.

 

October 2006 to March 2007 – Had 4 rounds of AC and then 12 rounds of taxol + herceptin.  It wasn’t fun, but it was much less horrible than I thought it would be.  I managed to continue working the entire time I was in treatment, just taking off days here and there when I didn’t feel well.  My boss was really understanding, which helped.  I never did the wig thing…I wore newsboy hats, and people complimented them all the time.  At home, I walked around bare-headed unless I was cold, and my kids thought that was the funniest thing.

 

April 2007 to November 2007 – Had an additional 13 treatments of herceptin (once every three weeks), plus 37 zaps of radiation during April and May.  Compared to the AC and taxol, all of that was fairly easy.

 

December 2007 to present – Living my life as fully as I can, on this new path that Gina, and all of the wonderful women here, have helped me find.

 

You know, I don’t generally eat pickles.  I don’t know what really made me think of having a pickle that day.  If I hadn’t opened that jar and pulled the muscle, I wonder what would have happened?  How far would the cancer have managed to get before I would have found it?  Was it pure coincidence and good luck that I found it so early?  Or was my guardian angel watching over me, using that pickle jar as a catalyst to get me to see that there was something I needed to take care of?  I didn’t think about any of that until months later, but now, I still wonder about it from time to time.  And I kind of wish I had kept that pickle jar, too!


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Reply with quote  #6 
August 10,2007

I just had the two year anniversary of my diagnosis. 

I went in for a routine mammogram and had a message waiting for me when I got home that I needed to come back for an ultrasound the following week.  Had the ultrasound done and the radiologist recommended that I contact a surgeon for a biopsy.  I did and had the biopsy done and was promised results by the end of the week.  By now I was pretty much a basket case.

My SIL is friends with the surgeons family so he pulled some strings and they called me to come in on Friday afternoon.  My husband travels for a living and was about two hours away begging me to ask them to wait until he could get here.  They wouldn't so my daughter and SIL met me at the surgeon's office.  They were on either side of me holding my hands when the doctor came in and said "you have cancer".  Those words will never leave me.  I had to call my husband on the phone to give him the news.  He's never gotten over the fact that he wasn't there with me.

This surgeon was and is a complete jerk.  He did a breast exam the first time I saw him (before the biopsy) and kept saying he didn't feel anything so he didn't understand why they wanted the biopsy.  I finally pointed out to him that he was examining the wrong breast.  He questioned me, belittled me and mocked me about things to the point that I left his office crying after every visit.  I stayed with him though because he comes so highly recommended by anyone here in my town.  He is considered the best.  I wouldn't do it again.

The one really good thing he did was to order an ONCO DX test which I scored pretty high on.  He even admitted that he was blown away by my score. 

I've now moved all of my care to the Mayo Clinic/Florida.  They have a breast cancer center and some awesome, caring and compassionate doctors there.  I've been checked from head to toe and back.  I have a mammogram every three months.  I've had some strange side effects from treatment and they are also helping me to deal with those.  My sense of smell was damaged by Taxotere and radiation damaged the top two ribs on my right side and all of the surrounding tissue.  I have severe, painful cramps under my breast, in and around those ribs. 

I am alive though and plan to be for a long, long time but I will never be the same again. 

The saddest part for me...not the scars, not the hairloss, not the endless doctor's appointments but how much this has affected all of my family.   I wish it had never happened but it did and it happened to all of us.  We've always been a close family but now it's different.  We appreciate each other more.




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Reply with quote  #7 
Thank you all for posting your stories, you are truly inspirations!
I hope more stories come.
You are the best.


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kmobley

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Reply with quote  #8 
I went for a routine mammogram and was called back into the breast center.  When they told me the lump was not fluid-filled, I started crying.  I had transcribed Radiology and many mammograms in the past.  I demanded the biopsy then.  The Radiologist agreed to do it.  I drove home in a fog.  I live alone.  I stood in the middle of the kitchen floor and screamed.  It was awful.  The next morning I was notified what it was.  Life has not been the same.  That is for sure.

Kay
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Reply with quote  #9 
Here I go again, reviving old topics. But I liked this one!

I'd always had lumpy breast. So when I noticed a mass in my left breast, I didn't think too much about it. The only reason I noticed it at all was that it was tender during my usual breast tenderness phase of premenstrual stuff. But as I said, it was all tender. And lumpy. So I didn't think too much about it. 

Then, some time later, maybe a month or two? I was drying my hair with a hairdryer, in the nude. With my arms thus both in the air and moving, I happened to notice my breast was..different. Didn't seem to be moving like it normally did. On closer examination, when I felt around for lumps or suspicious masses, the nipple wouldn't extrude. I checked the other side. No problem, it extruded fine. Back to the left. Still nope. I wondered about that mass, which I couldn't really feel now. But it wasn't my tenderness phase. I decided to wait and see what it did next cycle.

I watched it, and the more I watched it, the more I noted little changes, so I called the doctor. I was seeing her for several things, and this was the last "oh by the way" sort of thing. She looked at it, said it didn't look like anything, but change was bad, so she'd send me for a mammogram. That date was several weeks away. 

I almost cancelled the mammogram because it was right in the tender phase of my cycle, and my breasts, especially the left, seemed to be even more tender than they had been when I was a young woman! The thought of a mammo at that point was not pleasant, and the doctor hadn't seemed concerned...no urgency on the scheduling... But, the next date was way farther away, and conflicted with something I wanted to do, so I kept it.

I got there, and after the mammogram, they said, "oh, you're scheduled for an ultrasound, too." I looked at them. "Um, no one said anything about that...really?" They assured me I was scheduled. So I had an ultrasound. I was a little suspicious. I became certain something was up when they then told me that the radiologist wanted to come in and do more ultrasound herself. They said she just wanted to "match up" what she was seeing on the films to the ultrasound. I've had ultrasounds (for other body parts) before, and never has the doctor come in to do it. I nodded and just waited for the shoe to drop. Eventually, the doctor said she was "seeing some areas of concern". I looked at her. "Okay, sometimes when doctors say 'area of concern', they mean like, a cyst, or a calcification....?" I trailed off hopefully. She looked at me intently, like she was willing me to understand what I knew she could not yet officially say. So, she simply said, "This is not like that."

Oh.

 And I knew. She couldn't say "it's cancer", because I hadn't had a biopsy. But she was telling me that, based on her experience, this was a pretty sure thing. And she was right.

I was sent right away to see a breast care nurse, who told me lots of things I really didn't want to hear. She made an appointment with a surgeon "just in case", discussed lumpectomies vs. mastectomies, and mentioned reconstruction too (which they usually did at the same time). I found out for the first time that a mastectomy would result in a numb lump that others would see as a "breast" as long as I was clothed. The horror of what I was facing began to overwhelm me. That weekend was the worst of my entire life.

God had been a distant "get to it later" for me for some time. Suddenly, it became imperative that I find a church NOW. I knew I was going to need God! And I was ashamed that it had taken THIS to make me realize that. I'd visited a nice church recently; we decided to go back to it. They always ask if anyone needs prayer...I went up, very unlike me. Or the me that had been, anyway. I did ask that we go to a private room. That room was pretty full! Quite a few people came to lend their support. As they prayed, the love in that room...it was just palpable. I'd never felt its like. I felt His peace come in. The despair I'd been feeling lifted, and I took my first spiritual baby steps of hope. 

The biopsy was really painful. The tumor was right behind the nipple, right on that nerve, and no amount of anesthesia could completely numb things for me. She tried, oh how she tried, to make it so I didn't feel anything, but it was still very painful. And, at that point they actually thought I had two tumors, so there were two sites to endure. 

I honestly don't remember some details. I remember being called and told the results of my biopsy, but I already knew. It did add some finality to the whole surreal ordeal, tho. I never did hear, "You've got cancer" or "It's cancer". By the time I ever saw a doctor, it was an established fact, and they didn't have to break the news.

And, in the same vein...was just told by my oncologist that I have a new "palpable node". He was very unhappy. He told me to essentially expect a biopsy, and he noted that it seemed bigger than it was. In short, he seems to think it's cancer. We'll see if he's right.

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DoreenF

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Reply with quote  #10 
I remember that day as if I just happened yesterday...   some people say that I'm a poster child for early detection ...  

So...  it all started with a routine mammogram...  my first ever mammogram at the age of 44 ... I knew I was supposed to have a mammogram every year starting at age 40 - but I was really busy, travelling lots for work and just didn't make it a priority - no history of breast cancer in my family...  so...  I had that routine mamogram and one or two weeks later got a letter in the mail asking me to call back to schedule a diagnostic mammogram. I freaked out ... called my gyn's office ... they explained that the techs probably just hadn't done things right and that the radiologist needed a clearer view.  That calmed me down ... and I scheduled the diagnostic mammogram.   

I went for the diagnostic mammogram - in the clinic I go to they do those on a day that the radiologist is on site - and he looks at them before they send you on your way.   I was sitting in a room in one of those gowns waiting for the tech to come back with the all clear - she came back and said they wanted to do an ultrasound ...  and led me off to another room.  The tech there  did the ultrasound - instructing me to hummm...  so she could try to determine if it was a cyst -  she measured - took pictures and left the room - when she came back the radiologist was with her ..  he then did an ultrasound and talked to me ... he said something like "we see something but think it's probably a cyst - most of the time we'd recommend that you wait and come back in 6 months for another view" -  I said I didn't want to wait - if there was something suspicious I wanted to know what it was...   so the report from that diagnostic mammogram/ultrasound was that the patient insists on follow-up.   I got a referral to a breast surgeon who first tried to do a fine needle biopsy -only  there was no fluid so he switched to a core biopsy.. as he did the core biopsy he said he was 90% certain that it was a fibroadenoma ... he said he'd have results within a week.  

Fast forward to the next week ...  my sister was in town (for business) and I met with her every evening after we both finished work for dinner .. and would get home late.  I'd just gotten a phone with caller-id on it .. I came home over the weekend and noticed I had some missed calls - I checked the caller id log and saw that my surgeon had tried to call me over the weekend ... that was not a good thing - my followup appt with him was on monday.   I walked into the office and one of the office staff asked if someone had drove me to my appt -   that set off even more alarm bells in my head ... I just knew then for certain that I had cancer.   They called me back to a room and when the surgeon walked in his expression was very serious ...  I said - I've got cancer don't I ...  he said yes, and sat down and explained it all to me - he drew pictures ... and we discussed options ...  at the time it was felt to be small   < 1CM...   and very deep - almost at my chest wall. He gave me a couple of surgery appts - and asked if I'd like a second opinion.  I told him I didn't need another opinion - went home and started calling to see who could help me and if I could manage to arrange for the 1st surgical option he'd given me which was the following week.   Once I had that arranged - the numbness went away and I was crying lots ...  I was shocked that I had been diagnosed with cancer. 

Once I had a lumpectomy and it was confirmed that my cancer was 9mm, no node involvement - my surgeon recommended the oncotype dx test to help decide if I needed to have chemo or not  -  it was very new at the time.  I asked my insurance to approve it in advance since it was an out of network test and I didn't have out of network coverage -  I told them if I received a low score my decision would be to decline chemo ...   my insurance agreed to cover the oncotype dx test.  My results were at the very low end of the intermediate risk group for a distant recurrance ...  so I had a tough choice to make regarding chemo. Ultimately my decision (after much discussion with my surgeon, rad onc and onc) and lots of thinking - I chose to decline chemo -   but had my ovaries removed and would then be able to take one of the AI's instead of tamoxifen.  

I'm now 5 years out from my diagnosis and will be taking my last Arimidex next month...  I feel very fortunate that I did not continue to put off having my mammogram and that I made it a priority...  

Cyn - thanks for posting your story...  It prompted me to share mine ... and I hope that that palpable node is due to something other than cancer ...   hugs...  hope you get good news quickly....

Doreen


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Reply with quote  #11 
Thank you Cynt, for bringing up these topics.
My prayers are with you for your node. I have one right now too. We will give each other strength.
Doreen, thank you for your story... you are amazing.


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Cynt

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Reply with quote  #12 
Your story reminded me of other elements I left out.

This was only my second mammogram. I'd gotten one as a baseline way back when I was 36, because I had that benign fibrocystic stuff, and my breasts had begun to get more tender. It was mostly just precautionary. Then when 40 hit, like you, I was busy. First one I out and out intended to miss. I had no family history and none of the traditional risk factors. The next year, I actually forgot it, and the next, I was really busy because my husband had taken a job out of state, and I was playing single parent and working, and it was Christmas time...my doctor wasn't too concerned. Wrote me a script to make sure I got one sometime after I moved up with my husband. I figured another year wouldn't hurt anything. A year had just passed when I began noticing the changes I described. I was 43. I'm 45 now, just over 2 years later. I was diagnosed in April of '08.

If you're a poster child for early detection, I'm a poster child for blithe assumptions about risks, and putting off mammograms. Stage 3, 9/10 nodes, 6 cm tumor. We'll see what this ultrasound finds, and thank you for the well wishes!

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Reply with quote  #13 
Oh, Gina! I think I was writing my last post as you were posting yours. I missed what you said until later! I'm so sorry to hear that you have a node, too! I will keep you in my prayers! Do YOU know what the biopsy test entails? I think I'll be finding out tomorrow, regardless. I have no idea if they'll biopsy then, or if it has to be scheduled. When do you get tests on your node? When did they (or you) find it?
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Reply with quote  #14 
I had my scan Friday, and no biopsy is recommended!!  I hope you have similar news, Gina! I've posted a fuller version of the story in "the Waiting Room" if you're curious, but that's the most crucial point. Wooohooo!!
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Blessings,
Cynt
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