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Feb 11, 2010 05:22PM
Feb 16, 2010 02:41PM
NewBride, yes, our situations have a lot in common! We both had mucinous tumors + DCIS, diagnosed within 2 weeks of each other! I need to update my profile, though, because apparently both my DCIS and mucinous tumor were Grade 2 (instead of 1) and the mucinous was 1.5 cm (instead of 1)... argh.
Yes, my onc recommended hormone therapy, as well...I am undecided, but leaning towards saying no. I think my onc wants me to do hormone therapy regardless of whether or not I do chemo, so it's sadly not a replacement for chemo. Ovary removal would be a replacement for chemo. I recorded our appointment (just the audio) on my MP3 player so that I could listen to it later instead of stressing out trying to take notes about everything she was saying... so this afternoon I went out for a long walk in the sunshine to listen to our conversation on my headphones, and UGH, it nearly killed my afternoon. I had to calm down by sitting on a bench in a sunbeam, practicing deep breathing, listening to soothing music instead, and scribbling my frustration out in my journal.
The Anticancer book is very popular right now, so I'm assuming it's available at most booksellers... I got mine through Amazon. It's great because it's a very UPLIFTING book about all of the ways in which we can change our diets, lifestyles, and environments to make our bodies unwelcoming places for cancer. The author recommends doing these things along with conventional treatments, not instead of... but I may refuse chemo. I will either have a mastectomy or the 6 weeks of radiation (I haven't yet decided which is the lesser of the evils), but I'm drawing the line at purposefully poisoning myself. The online tool Adjuvant!online predicted that I have a 35% chance of recurrence within the next 10 years if I don't do hormone therapy or chemo, but that was calculated based only upon my age, general health, tumor size/grade/stage, and receptor status. Adjuvant!online does NOT distinguish between mucinous and other types of cancer, nor does it take diet and lifestyle changes into account - it can't, because those are things that can't be scientifically measured. Adjuvant!online thus assumes that the person it is making its calculations about eats a mainstream diet and lives a mainstream lifestyle and will continue to do so after diagnosis/treatment. There is no way to measure exactly how much diet and lifestyle changes would reduce my risk... but I have to believe the risk reduction is significant.
By the time a tumor is 1cm in size, it's likely to have been growing for 8-12 years already. What that says to me, is that 8-12 years ago, the conditions of my body and life were such that my body was "fertile soil" for cancer to grow in. During the past few years, however, I've made BIG changes in all areas of my life, and I'm continuing to do so...learning more and more about what "living an anti-cancer lifestyle" means... and it's exciting because it means there are lots of things I can do to make my body a place where cancer cannot grow anymore [edited to add: HOPEFULLY. But of course, I know there are no guarantees, and the cancer may very well return no matter what I do. But I'm willing to take that risk]. That's what I love about the Anticancer book - it's a balm for the "false helplessness" that oncologists instill in us by telling us that our ONLY options are having our ovaries ripped out, killing our digestive systems and immune systems and hair and GOOD CELLS with chemo, or spending half a decade taking early-menopause-inducing drugs.
Wow, I'm rambling...and I must get to my niece's 4th birthday party! Take care!
11/2009, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-