LauraFinney's Journey:

Patient: Breast Cancer > Invasive (Infiltrating) Ductal Carcinoma

Patient Info: Currently in active treatment (initial surgery, receiving chemo rounds/radiation), Diagnosed: over 5 years ago, Female, Age: 61, Stage I, HER2 Positive: No, ER Positive: Yes, PR Positive: Yes

  1. 1
    about 5 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    Invasive ductal carcinoma, Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS)

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  2. 2
    about 5 years ago
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    Lumpectomy

    Procedure or Surgery

    Wire placement for surgery using ultrasound with local anaesthetic, then diagnostic mammogram followed by sentenil node biopsy & lumpectomy, then spacers inserted for brachytherapy radiation.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
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  3. 3
    about 5 years ago
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    Internal radiation (Brachytherapy)

    Radiation

    Research/Trial type of internal radiation that was specifically designed for me, through MD Anderson/Katy Regional Centre. Twice a day, each session took total of 1 1/2 hrs. 6 hours apart. Radiation lasts for 1 week(5 days) after surgical placement of "Savi Applicator " and pre assessment of radiation, which is done by the radio-oncologist and 2-3 physicists. I received the same amount of rad. as if done over 4-6 week external rad. but it was very localized! Very hard driving back & forth as it was also just 1 week post op and had to have a procedure on the same breast as surgery was performed on. BUT it was only 1 week of radiation!!

    Painless Experience: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  4. 4
    about 5 years ago
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    Internal brachytherapy with Savi applicator/catheter.

    Clinical Trial

    Going for the positive...the applicator was purple and white (my fav. Colour). The staff were all extremely patient, empathetic, understanding, helpful above and beyond! The company that manufactured the catheter/applicator sent a specialized RN, With OR experience, to assist with sizing, insertion and helpful information for me specifically! The radiologist went over every single detail with me,, spent many office visits longer than anyone could imagine (I had a meltdown emotionally halfway through the radiation and he spent over an hour just talking to me about not just physically dealing with everything but also emotionally dealing with all of it! He was fantastic. I also found out that he was from the city I just moved from, after living there for 23 years, (originally moved from Toronto, Canada). Now that was a God Thing!!! If I needed anything they expected me to call them...24/7. whether I thought it important or not if I was worried about something they wanted to know. They believe in the whole body approach, not just the small damaged area!!! Yes I would do this over again, I would not change almost anything(few people changes, hospital protocols(not at MDA but a diff hospital I had to use!) and if I could pick my staff for the radiation Tx, I would want the same dr., nurses, techs and physicists !

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  5. 5
    about 5 years ago
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    Breast tenderness or growth

    Side Effects

    Could actually feel the catheter on outside of skin Bruised from it, some problems sleeping as Cath came out the side of left breast and I am a side sleeper! When catheter removed, steri strips were used to hold incision closed to heal but I had an allergic reaction to the adhesive on any and all tape and ended up with severe blistering & lengthy healing. I also had 2 cystitis infections but the staff handled them quickly and efficiently.

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  6. 6
    about 5 years ago
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    Decide if I should also have Chemo for 6 months

    Decision Point

    I Did oncotype testing to see if chemo would benefit and I fell smack in the middle of the test where it wasn't cut and dried to have chemo or not! It was a very difficult choice with everyone saying "whatever you decide we will back you 100%!" (Including the oncologist!) It was the most difficult decision I have ever had to make, but it had to be the right decision for me not anyone else. I felt like I was making a very selfish decision but I was the one who had to live/die with it. Really no one else could have made the decision for me. I was the one living through it with my body and ultimately I was the only one who could make the decision either for or against the next 6 months of chemo! The afternoon before my appointment with the oncologist to give him my decision I met with 2 of my medical care givers who had been a tremendous support for me from day 1, that being day of my mammogram. They listened and I talked, for well over 1 1/2 hrs. I was able to leave them knowing I had made the right decision for me.

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  7. 7
    about 5 years ago
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    Port o Cath

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    I had a "port" inserted day before chemo started...so another procedure! I was given a general a aesthetic and it was done as an outpatient. The chemo drugs are strong so a port is necessary to maintain the integrity of your your blood vessels. Having the port made it a lot easier not only with receiving the chemo drugs but also with any blood work! I bruise very easily and it's sometimes hard to find my veins so using the port made it a lot less difficult and less painful. I would apply my creme local a anaesthetic, go to the chemo rooms, a chemo nurse would insert needle into port and then I would go to the lab & get my blood drawn from the port! I really liked being able to do this. It was fast and really painless! I could shower, etc with port in. The only downside was that I did have some discomfort at the site and when the port was removed it was adhered to scar tissue & left an indent & some soreness at the site!

    Easy to Do: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
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  8. 8
    almost 5 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    Totally overwhelmed... No way, it's wrong diagnosis, they mixed up the results(no way could happen as I was standing right there looking at the mammo., as they were doing them. It was my boob up there on the screen for sure! Things moved really fast from there! I had the greatest Nurse Navigator, and Ultrasound tech in the world who helped me through it all, including surgery, emotional support, helpful information, and getting all my ducks in a row, so I could cope! Not just Heaven sent, but God sent. After 2 years of living in Houston, moving from Chicago, I finally had my AHA moment and realized why God brought us here to Houston! He put me smack dab in front of the BEST Cancer Centre in the country, possibly in the world, and on top of that he placed the most caring, knowledgeable staff in my path. I am a whole person to them not just a diagnosis!

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  9. 9
    almost 5 years ago
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    Procedure or Surgery

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

    Went as Expected: Not Specified
    Minimal Recovery: Not Specified
    Minimal Side Effects: Not Specified
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Not Specified
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  10. 10
    almost 5 years ago
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    Procedure or Surgery

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

    Went as Expected: Not Specified
    Minimal Recovery: Not Specified
    Minimal Side Effects: Not Specified
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Not Specified
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  11. 11
    almost 5 years ago
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    Sentinel lymph node biopsy

    Procedure or Surgery

    This procedure was done along with the lumpectomy, so it really didn't impact me, except that I would either be neg for lymph node involvement or positive for involvement and then would need more surgery...we will cross that bridge if necessary but ignore it for now! Lol

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
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  12. 12
    almost 5 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    1st chemo for 3 months, 1x/week was Taxol, with 3 pre-meds.

    Easy to Do: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  13. 13
    almost 5 years ago
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    Psychosocial

    Other Care

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

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  14. 14
    almost 5 years ago
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    Physiotherapy

    Other Care

    1. Christus St Catherine's, Houston 2. MD Anderson, Katy Regional Care Centre

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  15. 15
    almost 5 years ago
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    Other Care

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

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  16. 16
    over 3 years ago
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    Procedure or Surgery

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

    Went as Expected: Not Specified
    Minimal Recovery: Not Specified
    Minimal Side Effects: Not Specified
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Not Specified
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  17. 17
    over 3 years ago
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    Decision Point

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

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