New Members, start here first for How-to Tips, Community Rules, and What to Do if You've Just Been Diagnosed. MODS and ADMINS only topics here. Please see all the other forums below to post. Thanks.
Posted on: Sep 23, 2011 12:54PM - edited Jan 28, 2021 11:18AM by Moderators
If you are reading this, you have just been diagnosed with breast cancer and are probably feeling overwhelmed. We at Breastcancer.org understand how you are feeling, and hope that we can help you sort out the facts and your feelings.
Breastcancer.org provides not only peer-reviewed medical information about breast cancer, but also a community of members who are all somehow affected by the disease. Up-to-date, comprehensive, expert-reviewed information on breast cancer can be found at the main Breastcancer.org site.
The Discussion Boards is the Community area of Breastcancer.org where you can share and discuss information, as well as give and receive support from others going through similar experiences. You will have to register to post in the discussion boards, but it is easy, safe, and worth the effort.
I just received my pathology report, how do I get started?
An informational place to start is Your Diagnosis on Breastcancer.org. This section describes the characteristics of the cancer -- featured on your pathology report -- that might affect your treatment plan, including information about Stages of Breast Cancer, Lymph Node Involvement and Hormone Receptor Status. It also includes a Pathology Report Checklist and Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Your Diagnosis. This information may be something you want to look at and bring to your upcoming doctors visits.
On the Breastcancer.org Discussion Boards, there are dozens of forums discussing literally thousands of topics - for some, it may be overwhelming to know where to start. One forum to try is Just Diagnosed. This forum is for people with all different stages of breast cancer who are dealing with a new diagnosis.
You can find other good forums to join in the category Connecting With Others Who Have a Similar Diagnosis. This section includes ongoing conversations about all stages and types of breast cancer.
Once you find the forum discussing the specific type of cancer highlighted in your pathology report, you can join a conversation or start a topic with your questions or concerns. When you are new ("newbie") to the discussion forum, it is recommended to post initially in a number of different places on the discussion boards. By doing this, you increase the likelihood of finding your community of support. Don't forget to select any thread you start as a Favorite, so you can get notifications when someone responds to your post! You can also select any thread you post on as a Favorite by clicking the Heart icon at the top or bottom of each page. This way, you can follow up with members who have responded to you.
How can I find out about different treatment options?
Breastcancer.org provides a lot of information on Treatment & Side Effects. A good place to start within this section is Planning Your Treatment, which describes what types of treatment are available, the most likely sequence of treatments, and treatment options by cancer stage.
On the Discussion Boards the category Tests, Treatments & Side Effects has many forums of interest once you know your treatment plan. Depending on the recommendations of your medical team, you may want to explore Surgery - Before, During, and After, Chemotherapy - Before, During and After, Radiation Therapy - Before, During and After, and Hormonal Therapy - Before, During and After.
Where can I find definitions for all the medical terms and abbreviations?
The terms associated with a breast cancer diagnosis may seem like a whole new language. To find out what all the different abbreviations and acronyms mean on the discussion boards, consult the Discussion Board Abbreviation Key. The Your Diagnosis section on the main Breastcancer.org site is also helpful to explain what some confusing terms on your Pathology report mean for you.
I know I should be focused on my diagnosis and treatment, but I am worried about paying for my care.
On Breastcancer.org, the Paying for Your Care section includes good suggestions on lowering the cost of your medication, navigating your health insurance, and what to do if you have no insurance. And if you are concerned about how your treatments will affect your job, see Breast Cancer and Your Job.
On the Discussion Boards, there is a forum called Employment, Insurance and Other Financial Issues, where members discuss their experiences negotiating insurance and other financial issues.
Navigating this new world can be very difficult at times. Breastcancer.org is here to make it easier for you along your journey.
Remember, any questions that you have, you can always send a Private Message (or PM) to the Moderators (or Mods).