• How scared should I be - Triple Negative Breast Cancer twice ?

    Asked by judys3cats on Wednesday, November 1, 2017

    How scared should I be - Triple Negative Breast Cancer twice ?

    I had my second round of breast cancer this year. The first time I had lumpectomy, chemo, radiation (2010 - 2011). This time it was caught quickly - had not spread beyond the same breast. I had a bilateral mastectomy in April 2017 with reconstruction. My CT scans and bone scans were clear. How scared should I be about it coming back? Ironic that I led and still lead a healthy, active lifestyle. Never smoked, only drink an occasional white wine. Runner and lifted weights. My doctors told me because I have the 'gene' it didn't matter what I did. Can something come back a third time somewhere else? Although both breast cancers were in the same breast, they were different cancers. Does anyone have this situation? I will probably have my ovaries out sometime next year as a precaution.

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • geekling's Avatar

      You ought to not be scared at all once All Hallows Eve is done.

      Make a small change or two. Researchers have just discovered a correlation between breast cancer and cow milk. Try switching to goat or seed milk.

      There is another correlation between plastic (polyester) and breast cancer. Wear cotton bras.

      Dont stash you phone in your blouse.

      Small changes and being proactive can mean a lot.

      Best wishes and fabulous luck

      over 4 years ago
    • Judytjab's Avatar

      So sorry you had to go through cancer twice. It's such an emotional roller coaster. I had a similar situation. In 2013 I was diagnosed with pre cancer. I had a lumpectomy and one year later had infiltrating Ductal carcinoma in the same breast. Like you, I had a bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction but mine wasn't triple negative. It's hard not to worry about it coming back, I know but I would try to go on with life because worrying isn't going to change a thing. Best of luck to you.

      over 4 years ago
    • SusanK's Avatar

      Be vigilant, not scared. You have done what your health team advises and have had a bi-lateral mastectomy. You live a healthy life. I don’t know what more you can do except go on living and loving each day. Try to focus on the positive things and people around you. There are many TNBC survivors out there, and I am one, who lived with your same fears for a while. But we are still here...and I am no longer fearful, just vigilant.

      over 4 years ago
    • fiddler's Avatar

      Judys3cats ...
      I am sorry you had to go through this again. It's bad enough to learn you had TNBC, but for it to come back...wow.

      Almost 5 years ago, in Dec. 2012, I was diagnosed with TNBC. So far, so good. A year ago I met an MD-oncologist-researcher who told me that TNBC usually comes back within the first two years, and the longer one goes beyond five years the chances of recurrence decrease each year, whereas with other types of breast cancer the chances increase every year.

      Probably it is genetics. In 2015 I had my DNA tested - cancer was the #1 group of mutations (followed by heart and I had a heart attack last Dec. - what's with Dec.? Haha),

      For some people diet, exercise, and habits don't matter. An acquaintance of mine was a naturopath, born in India, never smoked or ate meat or drank alcohol, and she exercised and meditated regularly all her life. On a cruise with a mutual friend she became ill. When she returned home a doctor diagnosed brain cancer and she died a few months later.

      However, I believe stress is the trigger to activate the mutated genes. Take a look at how you deal with stress.

      over 4 years ago
    • fiddler's Avatar

      PS - I read that Vanderbilt university has done some research and found there may be two types of TNBC; one that recurs and one that doesn't

      over 4 years ago
    • judys3cats' Avatar

      I have a fairly stressful job in software (I test it) and rather, I respond very stressfully. I keep thinking that I should change but still need to work. There is a lot of age discrimination in the work world and if they ever found out I fought cancer twice, I would never get hired.....that is where a lot of my anxiety is, too.

      over 4 years ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar

      Katy Jacob has been through TNBC twice, in 2010 and 2013. Her blog is here:

      I didn't have TNBC, but I've been a breast cancer patient since 2014 (lumpectomy/chemo/rads, now on hormone therapy) and a caregiver since 2001. I've had some very stressful years. I find ways, however I can, to reduce that stress; some of those require a learning curve. Do whatever helps, even if it's just for five minutes, and find whatever works for you.

      over 4 years ago
    • kalindria's Avatar

      When I was tested for the "gene" because of my ovarian cancer, I was told I did not have it. During the screening process, my geneticist said that if I did have the gene, my female relatives should be tested as well and that the presence of the mutation means a higher likelihood of breast and colon cancer in those who carry it. My medical team would increase screening for those cancers if I had the gene.

      Since you've already had breast cancer and are planning to have your ovaries removed, I'd ask my medical team about a full hysterectomy with removal of both ovaries and fallopian tubes. New research is finding that many so-called ovarian cancers start in the fallopian tubes -- mine did.

      Extra screening and a few more tests a year are not a lot considering all you've been through already. I'm happy that you've conquered the beast twice - good for you. We're all here for you!

      over 4 years ago

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