Brooklynchele's Journey:

Survivor: Breast Cancer > Invasive (Infiltrating) Ductal Carcinoma > Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: almost 7 years ago, Female, Age: 51

  1. 1
    almost 6 years ago
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    Lumpectomy

    Procedure or Surgery

    The lumpectomy went well. It was an in and out procedure. We even stopped at Wendy's to get cheeseburgers and fries on the way home! Almost no pain afterward. No medication needed.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  2. 2
    almost 6 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    Had to wait over the July 4th holiday to get results back. Was surprised it was cancer since surgeon had indicated after lumpectomy that "it did not look like cancer". I really had no emotional reaction at the time. I think my brain went into "how to best deal with this" mode. I knew that I would need surgery and focused on what my best option would be.

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  3. 3
    almost 6 years ago
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    Decision Point

    Surgeon gave me the option to do partial mastectomy or double mastectomy (because of breast size). I opted to do the partial.

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  4. 4
    almost 6 years ago
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    Sentinel lymph node biopsy

    Procedure or Surgery

    I was allergic to either the blue dye or the radioactive tracer. My breast is permanently disfigured from the reaction. I was told the reaction I had is exceptionally rare. The procedure was not as bad as people say it is though. The fear that I had about the injections for this procedure was definitely worse than the reality. I was given a ball to squeeze for pain. Each of the 4 injections felt like an intense stinging/burning sensation but the pain went away within a few seconds. I was offered a numbing injection first but opted against it because it would have meant another injection. I do not regret opting against it.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
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  5. 5
    almost 6 years ago
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    Mastectomy

    Procedure or Surgery

    I reacted badly to the anesthesia during surgery and instead of being released, I was kept overnight. Despite the fact that the surgery had been completed mid-afternoon it wasn't until midnight that I started feeling better. I suffered a laceration of the inside of my mouth from the breathing tube that took months to heal. The surgical site, however, healed quickly and with almost no pain. No medication needed. I think I was more afraid of this procedure than I needed to be. 1 year later, my incision (which was made directly over the lumpectomy scar) has healed nicely.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
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  6. 6
    almost 6 years ago
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    Decision Point

    I had difficulty finding an oncologist I felt comfortable with. I interviewed 2 before I found a third one I was happy with. The first oncologist I interviewed was the one recommended by my surgeon. I opted against him mostly because I didn't care for the way his staff was treating other patients in the waiting room. I also did not like the fact that he was presenting his treatment plan as a "must do this" instead of telling me my options. The second oncologist I loved and was scheduling chemo. I had a few last minute questions that I called his office about before my start date. I called once every day for 7 days straight and never received a return call. I knew that I could not treat at an office that didn't return calls - especially if I had some emergency.

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  7. 7
    almost 6 years ago
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    Decision Point

    I was given a choice between AC/T or T/C chemo. I opted for the T/C because of a pre-existing heart condition.

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  8. 8
    almost 6 years ago
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    Birthday

    Celebration

    I celebrated my 44th birthday the day before I started chemo. I actually delayed the start of my chemo so I could celebrate another birthday before I started.

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  9. 9
    almost 6 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    I reacted badly to the taxotere and was in fact allergic to it. The chemo was discontinued after the second of a proposed 4-6 rounds due to severe adverse side effects.

    Easy to Do: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
    1 Comment
  10. 10
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    Allergic to taxotere

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  11. 11
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

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

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  12. 12
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    Happened around my second treatment. Eventually my hair grew back after treatment only instead of stick straight, it is now very curly.

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  13. 13
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

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

    0 Comments
  14. 14
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    Lymphadema in surgical breast only.

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  15. 15
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    This was caused by the laceration and irritated by the chemo.

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  16. 16
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    Severe bone pain. Was unable to get out of bed for days after each treatment except to use the bathroom. 1 year later some of the joint pain I developed still continues, although not as severe. At least it's manageable.

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  17. 17
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    On chest for a few days after chemo.

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  18. 18
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

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

    0 Comments
  19. 19
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    ENT directly linked vertigo to chemo.

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  20. 20
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    Burns in hand where chemo given and up arm. My hand and arm healed within a few months.

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  21. 21
    almost 6 years ago
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    Side Effects

    This was caused by the "chemo leak". Now when I need a blood draw or an IV, the nurses find it hard to get a vein. They have told me that it is common for chemo patients to develop "vein roll". We get around the problem by using a butterfly needle first.

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  22. 22
    almost 6 years ago
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    Decision Point

    Met with radiation oncologist. Decision was made to not do radiation due to cardiac risk.

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  23. 23
    almost 6 years ago
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    Finished treatment

    Celebration

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

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  24. 24
    almost 6 years ago
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    Masses found in other breast

    Oh No

    Ultrasound showed 2 masses in non-surgical breast.

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  25. 25
    almost 6 years ago
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    Double biopsy

    Procedure or Surgery

    Very quick and easy. I was awake during the procedure. The interventional radiologist first numbed the areas. A small incision was made and the doctor took several samples of each area. Each time a sample was taken, the tool he used made a sound similar to a stapler. During the procedure, the tech was focusing on the areas using ultrasound. I was able to watch the procedure on the ultrasound machine. It was pretty fascinating. In each place that was biopsied a small marker was placed so the areas could be identified in the future. After the procedure a mammogram was performed in order to image the areas for placement and future comparison. I had no pain at all with this procedure.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  26. 26
    almost 6 years ago
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    Biopsies were negative for cancer

    Celebration

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

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  27. 27
    almost 6 years ago
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    Celebrated 1 year cancer free

    Celebration

    I think my adverse side effects during this journey were mostly rare. I came into this diagnosis with many pre-existing conditions and allergies. Despite the reactions, 1 year later, I feel pretty good. For me, having been personally touched by cancer I suppose there will always be the thought in the back of my mind "what if it comes back?" But I also realize that life is about living and moving forward. If I allow my fear about recurrence take over then cancer has truly won. So I am living my life and looking ahead. I am grateful for all of the new friends I met along this journey.

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