Log in to post a reply
Feb 21, 2019 02:06AM
Your first reaction upon getting this news is to view your breasts as time bombs waiting to go off and kill you. They already have gone off! When I first got the news that I had cancer I instantly knew I wanted them off! Gone! Goodbye! I didn't EVER want to be going through this again!
Thank god my surgeon, a wise and compassionate woman, listened to me rant about wanting my boobs off, nodded her head and completely ignored me. She said -no woman , having just been told she has breast cancer, is in any mental condition to make any long term medical decisions. Decisions made under those circumstances are made with the heart and terror, not with rational statistical or scientific judgement. She said I needed to think about it, consider the numbers that were on my side, and not make a decision based on a knee jerk reaction that I might regret later.
- she said that it's easy to remove breast but a whole other story building new ones. If anyone compares reconstructive surgery with a 'boob job', those people are fools and idiots because the two surgeries are nothing alike! Just read about it here, this site is FULL of information that tells you reconstruction is not a boob job! Removing breasts is simple, but putting them back is not. Think about it.
- she made it utterly clear that my life expectancy WOULD NOT GO UP if I removed my breasts. She said that lumpectomy and radiation, in my situation had THE SAME OUTCOME as mastectomy. She said if she thought a mastectomy would save my life she would have given me no other options. But I did have options. I had the option to save my breast. She urged me to think this through with a rational mind.
- she said that if I found it too mentally burdensome to carry on having breasts, that the worry was overwhelming me, I could always have them removed later if I wanted. But putting them back once they were gone is not so simple.
The thing to know is that breast cancer in your breast doesn't kill you. Breast cancer in your breast is often the best case scenario. It's when breast cancer sets up house somewhere else that you've got trouble. And removing your breasts does not make you safe from metastatic breast cancer. It might be a sacrifice you make that gains you nothing. You need to think about this.
I asked my surgeon what my boob would look like after she was done and she couldn't answer me. She said she would do her best to leave my breast as intact as possible while getting all the cancer out. Then after healing and radiation, give it at least a year to let the breast tissue settle down and THEN decide if I can live with what is left or I want to tweak it or remove it or remove both or rebuild both... At least I would have options.
SO if not dying from cancer is your goal, then ask your doctors if mastectomy for DCIS is a reasonable reaction in your case. Is it going to improve your life outcome more than lumpectomy and radiation? If the answer is no .... then give some thought to this.
This is a miserable, scary place to be. You feel like you are making life and death decisions. In some respects, you are. But good or bad you will have to live with those decisions and please take the time to imagine yourself three years from now, feeling okay, getting on with life (it will look the same but rarely does it ever feel the same) and if your breast is gone will you regret it or have peace with it? Do not make any decision believing that loss of breast = no more cancer, because that just isn't a promise anyone can make you. Hugs to you.
3/23/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
4/12/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel
7/5/2017 Whole-breast: Breast
Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)