STOPBC's Journey with Breast Cancer

Survivor: Breast Cancer

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: almost 8 years ago, Female, Age: 45, Stage II, HER2 Positive: No, ER Positive: Yes, PR Positive: Don't Know

  1. 1
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    I was 37, and I knew it was CANCER the day I had my Biopsy Guided with Ultrasound, I went by myself, thinking it wasn't anything serious, but right at the moment when I set foot into that lab, I knew that if my doctor had order this test, it meant something was not right.

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  2. 2
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Single or bilaterar mastectomy?

    Decision Point

    Well, the series of diagnostic tests I had, showed a much bigger tumor than it actually was, so my only choice was mastectomy, but my gut told me that I had to have bilateral mastectomy, I did not want to risk another chancer of cancer on my other breast, I was too young and the chances were higher!

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  3. 3
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Body part/function

    Loss

    I cried and cried and cried some more for nights. Nights because that was when my husband was holding me and my girls were asleep... I was so scare of not being normal any more, of my husband not liking me anymore, of me no feeling like a woman any more... of the possibility of lossing not only my life, but also my hair! Not knowing what to expect from the surgery and the results made me so stressed, afraid and anxious...

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  4. 4
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Double Mastectomy

    Procedure or Surgery

    My surgery went well, I had negative lymph nodes, started the reconstruction at the same time of surgery... the real journey had just begun...

    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  5. 5
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Body part/function

    Loss

    The first time I went to the bathroom by myself and looked at the mirror, I thought I looked like a wrestler, I had bandages all over my torso and it was flat... eventhough I had the temporary implants already...

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  6. 6
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Pain

    Side Effects

    Thanks to pain meds, recovery from surgery was soooo painful, but with each day it was less and less... I guess it wasnt the physical pain I was feeling, it was the emotional distress, the reality that was hitting me so hard...

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  7. 7
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    If I tell you chemo is easy, i would be lying to you... chemo sucks, just like cancer... I did not get nausea/vomiting, but the general feeling was like I did not belong to my body, I was there, but I wasn't. Hard to explain... not feeling hungry but eating because I needed to... tasting food that tasted like nothing...

    Easy to Do: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  8. 8
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Breast reconstruction

    Other Care

    During chemotherapy, once a week I had to go to the plastic surgeon to get my expander fill with liquid, that was more than painful, a lot of discomfort. I had to avoid going for my expansions the week after my chemo, to prevent infections.

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  9. 9
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Anemia (low red blood cell counts)

    Side Effects

    too many to choose from, besides anemia I had metal taste in my mouth, fatigue, malaise in general... and the worst for me came on the 11th day after first chemo treatment, alopecia. Loosing my hair was one of the most traumatic feelings, even more the loosing my breasts... but don't worry, after 3 years, my hair is even longer than it was and I love it! Oh yes, it came back completely different that it was before. Curly, not streight and lots of gray hairs, not fun, but at least hair!

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  10. 10
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Targeted therapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    After chemo I needed to start on Tamoxifen for 5 years, I'm on my 3rd year alreay! At the begining while my body adjusted to its effects I experienced hot flushes and amenorrhea, yay no periods. Those side effects are much lesser now, if I dont excercise, I get more hot flushes and my periords are almost normal now.

    Easy to Do: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  11. 11
    • STOPBC
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 4 years ago
    STOPBC's Avatar

    Birthday

    Celebration

    On my 38th birthday, I had a surprise party, it was so emotional and I was so happy to have all my friends and family supporting me all the time through this hard ordeal. Each day is a celebration for me, looking at my daughter each and every single day, being there for them and being able to go back to school my self. I will be graduating next year, i'll be a registered nurse!

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