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    Procedure or Surgery (Double Mastectomy): Even though the cancer was not due to genetics, I still decided to do a double mastectomy. This was mainly for my piece of mind because I am so young and don't ever want to have to go through it again. I also felt that they were just boobs and that being alive was better than having boobs (plus with reconstruction I can have really nice ones later.) On the side affected by cancer I had a modified radical mastectomy where 23 lymph nodes were removed and on the other side just a prophylactic mastectomy. i also had expanders put in so that after radiation I can have reconstruction done. My final pathology report came back saying NO cancer in the breast tissue or lymph nodes. I am still in the recovery process and have limited range of motion in the left arm (the side the lymph nodes were removed from). I will be going to see a physical therapist who specializes in lymphedema and lymphedema prevention so hopefully the range of motion will improve.

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    Drug or Chemo Therapy (Chemotherapy): Overall the chemo was easy to do because I already had the port. The staff at the Lack's Cancer Center chemo area were wonderful. Most of them knew you by name and treated you like any normal person which definitely made the chemo easier. I had four rounds of adriamycin and cytoxin, followed by four rounds of taxol. I received a dose every other week. The AC rounds made me slightly nauseous kinda like an uneasy stomach, and tired. The day after each AC infusion I would get a shot of neulasta to boost my immune system. The taxol rounds gave me some body aches and numbness in the fingers and toes, but otherwise I felt like I hadn't even had chemo.

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    Decision Point (What doctor to see): After being diagnosed, I was told that the soonest I could be seen by a medical oncologist in Muskegon was about a week and a half later. So my mom and I got on the computer to research different places and decided on the Comprehensive Breast Clinic at the Lack's Cancer Center in Grand Rapids. I was diagnosed on Friday and the following Tuesday I was being seen by Dr. Caughran. By Thursday, I had had a breast MRI and a CT-PET scan and a meeting with my entire team of doctors that would be working on my case (the breast surgeon, medical oncologist, radiation oncologist, genetic counselor, nurse, and social worker). All of this (along with the port placement and start of chemo) happened before I would have just met with the medical oncologist in Muskegon.

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    Procedure or Surgery (Implant chemotherapy port): The only bad part was that its close proximity to the clavicle made it hard to reach across my body at first, but this went away after about a week.

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    Oh No (Diagnosed): It was shocking to hear that the lump had been cancer after being told prior to surgery (for 3 months) that it had probably been a fibroadenoma. Even worse to hear that due to the size and lymph node involvement it was placed at Stage IIIa.

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    Procedure or Surgery (Lumpectomy): After finding a lump in November 2011, I underwent an Ultrasound and told that it had all benign characteristics and was probably a fibroadenoma, and to have a follow-up US in 3 months. After the follow-up US showed the same thing I decided to just have the lump removed since it had grown larger.