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Topic: Invasive Breast Cancer

Forum: Older Than 60 Years Old With Breast Cancer —

Meet other women who are similar in age and dealing with age-appropriate issues.

Posted on: Mar 17, 2019 08:32PM

Elderberry wrote:

Just been diagnosed with invasive BC, The tumour is large and I will be doing chemo/drugs to shrink it. FULL PANIC MODE> The various threads and sites I go to seem fairly positive in terms of treatment success and a few good years to look forward to afterwards. Can anyone share their positive experiences? Need the moral support.

De Novo - this isn't a "brave battle" - it is a "furious struggle" Dx 3/6/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IV, metastasized to liver, HER2+ Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab)
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Mar 18, 2019 09:19AM Meow13 wrote:

When I look back I had very little physical pain through surgeries and treatment. The anxiety and emotional stress came from the uncertainty and always worrying about what my future would be. The statistics show that most people recover and don't see the cancer again. If recurrence happens you treat and move on. The beginning was definitely the hardest the constant thought of the cancer.

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Mar 18, 2019 02:15PM Elderberry wrote:

Cheers, Meow13. The messages are so helpful. I have to stop beating myself over the head with "How did I miss it so long?"

Do I really need to live in a disinfected, spartan bubble after chemo? (Reading info on post chemo stuff) I live in a 1929 house, so it is perpetually dusty, there are piles of books, musical instruments, vinyl/CD, craft projects. And a cuddly cat. When I see "Don't pet or kiss your pet" ------ WOW - My husband will take over litter box duty but I can't banish Aelfric. Do I wear gloves and a mask :-)

The last few weeks of testings, waiting were horrifc. I am finally able to look at food again (better load up before chemo starts) and I sleep mostly okay.

Just want to get this thing on.




De Novo - this isn't a "brave battle" - it is a "furious struggle" Dx 3/6/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IV, metastasized to liver, HER2+ Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab)
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Mar 18, 2019 02:34PM Spookiesmom wrote:

A bubble? No. Cautious yes. Don’t go out in large contained crowds. Like a theater. Grocery shopping should be ok. Use common sense, if you don’t feel up to something, don’t.

The only time I was told to avoid my dogs was after a test with radioactive dye. They said to stay out of airport too😂. Spookie wasn’t having that, and we were both ok.

I was 7 years out before reoccurrence. After the year from hell, I went on my merry way, doing and eating my way through life. And intend to keep on after I kick this back to the curb again.

Reoccurrence 3-19. Dx IDC, Stage IIIA, Grade 3
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Mar 18, 2019 03:52PM Elderberry wrote:

Thank you, Spookiesmom. I personally believe petting a furry friend is healing. Once I get on with the treatment plan, I won't feel so frozen in time. It is hard to think more than five minutes ahead.

De Novo - this isn't a "brave battle" - it is a "furious struggle" Dx 3/6/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IV, metastasized to liver, HER2+ Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab)
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Mar 18, 2019 04:14PM keepthefaith wrote:

Elderberry, welcome, but sorry you found yourself here! You are correct that once treatment begins, you will feel better mentally and emotionally. There are many stories, tips, support, etc.to help you get through, on this forum. Surround yourself with those who will support you in a positive way, keep busy doing things you enjoy, take time for yourself. Yes, to the furry friends! Your MO will probably arm you with an arsenal of meds to ward off any potential SE's. I didn't use most of mine. Make sure you mention even minor SE's to your medical team asap and you should be fine. Best wishes!

Dx 9/17/2013, IDC, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 10/18/2013 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel Chemotherapy 12/3/2013 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Chemotherapy 12/26/2013 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Chemotherapy 1/16/2014 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Chemotherapy 2/11/2014 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 4/1/2014 Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/23/2014
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Mar 18, 2019 04:17PM Elderberry wrote:

keepthefaith: thanks for your words. What is SE --- other than some form of infection?

De Novo - this isn't a "brave battle" - it is a "furious struggle" Dx 3/6/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IV, metastasized to liver, HER2+ Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab)
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Mar 18, 2019 04:57PM SpecialK wrote:

elderberry - SE = side effects. I never wore a mask, I cuddled my pets, cleaned my house, grocery shopped, etc - if I didn't feel like going out I didn't, but did manage my schedule so I was home without obligations for the first week after chemo, then proceeded as normal until the next round. My only warnings from my MO were to skip sushi and public salad bars.

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 15 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 6/18/13-present. Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3 Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC)
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Mar 18, 2019 04:59PM Spookiesmom wrote:

side effects. Yes, once you have your plan, and things start happening, you do feel more in control. And do keep in touch with MO, s/he has an arsenal at their disposal for s/e.

Reoccurrence 3-19. Dx IDC, Stage IIIA, Grade 3
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Mar 18, 2019 06:02PM Elderberry wrote:

SpecialK - yay on being able to pet my Aelfric. I figure in the good weeks before the next round I'll be a little more dutiful in the decluttering/housekeeping so I can slack off after chemo. Hubby will pitch in. Planning on getting a buzzcut soon so losing my hair won't be as shocking. My hair has never been shorter than just past my chin, when it wasn't elbow length in my 20's.

De Novo - this isn't a "brave battle" - it is a "furious struggle" Dx 3/6/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IV, metastasized to liver, HER2+ Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab)
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Mar 18, 2019 06:54PM Runrcrb wrote:

elderberry, i wore a mask and gloves when i flew for work between chemo sessions and when i was in the hospital with my husband (for his cancer). Each of us responds differently to chemo and your treatment is likely different from mine but just because a SE is listed it doesn’t mean you’ll have it. I was never nauseous. I usually felt icky 2-4 days after each infusion. I worked full time and managed my husband’s care through chemo and radiation.

This early diagnosis period is the rough part emotionally.

All the best


Dx 6/27/2016, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 4/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 6/27/2016, ILC/IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 4/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/21/2016 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/31/2016 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 2/8/2017 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall Hormonal Therapy 4/22/2017 Aromasin (exemestane) Surgery 12/12/2017 Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap
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Mar 18, 2019 07:02PM SpecialK wrote:

elderberry - I didn't take any special precautions other than lifting and carrying limitations, but I had multiple surgeries (long story, lol!) before chemo. I had Neulasta injections with each chemo to boost my white cells, and this provided some protection from opportunistic infection. Ask your doc if they do this routinely or wait to see if you require it. I was never sick with anything communicative during the five months of chemo, including from exposure by members in my own household. My daughter had a bad case of tonsillitis and I washed her sheets, washed her dishes, etc. - no problem. It is important to follow the recommendations of your own doc, but I did fine living pretty normally. I also received before/during/after steroids which provided some excess energy just before chemo and I took advantage of it by paying bills, making sure all laundry was done, and laid in a supply of groceries so that I could just chill in the days right after chemo. That system worked well for me - my husband works a 12 hour day and has an hour each way commute and my daughter was a college student at the time, have no other family locally, so I was on my own to get things done. I had very long hair prior to chemo which I cut at the chin length and used to have a hairpiece made. I did not shave or buzz it for almost a month because my hair did not fall out right away - this is unusual. I went through two rounds of chemo before I lost enough that I needed to buzz it off completely. I am saying this because having my own hair helped me get through the start of chemo helped me feel "normal" in a distinctly "abnormal" life situation. Others feel better about taking the bull by the horns and buzzing it off before it falls, do what feels right for you!

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 15 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 6/18/13-present. Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3 Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC)
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Mar 19, 2019 12:33AM Meow13 wrote:

This cancer we get doesn't seem to be from being sick or living in a sick environment. I did everything right, exercise, good food, weight good and pow diagnosed with cancer. It is a fluke nothing we can prevent. We can lower our risks but in the end what will happen will happen. We treat and move on life is good. Thankful, we take comfort from others going down the same path. Drugs and treatment are improving but more is needed. I hope I live to see the day when cancer is not treated by cutting out tissue, poisoning and burning.

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