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Topic: Crying, scared, blind-sided 50 year old.

Forum: Just Diagnosed — Discuss next steps, options, and resources.

Posted on: Sep 17, 2021 06:32AM

ritac97 wrote:

3 weeks ago I was healthy. I had recent blood work that showed all my numbers were excellent. And then one morning I woke up with pain in my left breast. I thought I slept on it wrong somehow and waited until the following day to check it. That's when I found a lump. It was going into the weekend but I managed to get an appointment with an OB-GYN Monday morning. He checked the lump and immediately referred me to get a diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound. They didn't have any appointments available for over 2 weeks but I finally had the tests done 3 days ago. I knew by comments from the people doing the tests that it wasn't good. One mentioned "a lot of excess flesh" in the breast with pain. Another said she wanted to be honest "the ultrasound didn't look good". I was too shook up to ask any questions so I just went home and cried.

I got 2 more referrals for a biopsy and MRI but both couldn't schedule me right away. I have the MRI in a week and the biopsy in 2 weeks. I'm actively trying to get an earlier biopsy appointment. Yesterday I gathered up the courage to call radiology and get more details. I was told on a scale of 1 to 5, I was a 5 meaning cancer likely. I was also told it appeared to have spread to the lymph nodes and that it measured 3.4 cm on the largest side.

Ever since I can't stop crying. I am terrified. I feel like I've just received a death sentence. I just turned 50 years old last month. I didn't think cancer ran in my family because all the relatives on my mother's side never had cancer but I came to find out that my father's sister (my aunt) who we are estranged from, had both breasts removed due to cancer and that my second cousins on his side also had it.

People keep assuring me that everything is okay and that breast cancer treatment has come a long way but mostly that is for early detection. I am usually good about getting annual mammograms but this year I was so overwhelmed with other things that I missed the Feb 2021 appt. I wasn't very concerned because I've read that every 2 years after age 50 is recommended by a lot of doctors.

It appears my best case scenario at this point is stage 3. I won't know for sure until I have the MRI next week. I'm so scared I can't sleep. And when I do, I have nightmares. My grandmother on my mom's side lived into her 90s. I always thought I took after her as I resemble her. Now I am faced with not making it out of my 50s. I would appreciate just talking to people who have been through this. Maybe ones with stage 3 or 4 diagnoses because they can help me prepare for what's to come. Thank you.

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Sep 25, 2021 05:31AM - edited Sep 25, 2021 08:25AM by scaredme

Rita,

Things will move along much more quickly once you have a diagnosis. For perspective, I found my lump 6 weeks before they got me in for the diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound. The nurse practitioner had assured me that she didn't think it was anything to worry about, so I didn't push to have it be done earlier. They were also backed up from Covid since no one had been going for mammograms throughout the Spring of 2020. I will say that once they did the diagnostic, things moved at record speed for me. You may want to do some research on breast surgeons and oncologists in your area so you are prepared if they do indeed find Cancer. Your primary will likely recommend one, but if you have friends who might make a recommendation, I would take it under advisement.

I know how scary this whole experience is. I am almost exactly the same age as you (I turned 49 in April) and also suffer from anxiety. One thing I did for myself throughout my whole experience is walk 10,000 steps a day. It honestly kept me sane throughout the diagnostic and treatment phases. I have always been 100% healthy so this was a huge blow to me and to my entire family. I will say that the surgery, chemo and radiation were tolerable and I did better than I had anticipated. I also showed myself and others how tough I really am. Stay strong. One step at a time!

Kristen


Dx 8/11/2020, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 8/20 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/1/2020 Lumpectomy Surgery 10/29/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/4/2020 AC + T (Taxol) Radiation Therapy 3/25/2021 Whole-breast: Lymph nodes, Chest wall Hormonal Therapy 3/29/2021 Femara (letrozole) Immunotherapy
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Sep 25, 2021 07:40AM ThreeTree wrote:

rita - I agree with the others; do some deep breathing and don't try to get ahead of yourself. All the info will come in and then you will have a plan. A few weeks of waiting will not make any real difference.

At least you are anxious to get all that info and have things taken care of asap. I was so scared and anxious I kept wanting to run away from it all and wanted more and more time to process. When I started to get info that indicated a bad situation I just kept thinking they were wrong somehow and didn't understand the story I'd told them about how I had had a benign fibroadenoma before in that same exact location, sot this must be some sort of benign problem. At least you are generally accepting of what you are hearing and I think that's good. I think it's that "fight or flight" reaction and where I wanted to flee; you and most others on here want to fight immediately, and unfortunately, you have to wait for all the info to come in before you can get to that fight. It is a real mess of a situation to be in, either way.

Many years ago, I heard the term "threshold anxiety". I think that is where this diagnosis and waiting for info period puts us all in the early phases of breast cancer diagnosis and treatment planning. They say it refers to standing in a doorway and needing to go inside or out, but you just can't move one way or the other, because of the lack of information or the burden and weight of the information you do have. Again, breathe and just hold on, all of the pieces to the puzzle will come together and you will get a plan in place and feel much better.

I was so scared I wound up in the ER. I was having chest pains and didn't know if it was anxiety or a heart attack. I had been told by one dr that she thought I had breast cancer, but I just couldn't believe it. The chest pains turned out to be costochondritis which I still have, but in the ER they referred me to a surgeon. It was a "next name on the list sort of thing" and after looking her up, I didn't think she had a lot of breast cancer experience, so I looked up the names of other surgeons there online. My area even has a magazine that notes "top doctors" in the area for given situations and they appear online too, I looked at online reviews, etc. I found a very highly regarded name, who happened to be close by and that same hospital where I had been to the ER, so when I called the surgery office I asked if I could see him instead of the person whose name I was given. It was no problem and then he did the biopsy and surgery. He was wonderful through the whole thing and I'm just so sorry he retired a year after my surgery, but so glad he saw me through the worst part of it all. I continue to see his clinic partner for my less frequent follow ups now. While she is good and I trust her, she doesn't compare to the dr I had.

My point here really in all this "stream of consciousness" writing here is: Do you live in an area that has a cancer center of some kind, preferably affiliated with some sort of research or teaching center? Do you live in a large enough area where online reviews would be prevalent and available. Word of mouth is good too, but in my situation, I didn't really know anyone around who'd had surgery of any kind, much less breast surgery, so I was pretty much on my own in finding a doctor. I've found that other doctors often refer to the next one on the list, or their "good buddy" or whatever, so I think they might not be the best resource. I've found that medical staff can be an excellent source if you can get them to offer up names of who they would go to if they were looking for someone. Ask nurses, technicians, front desk people, etc. You can get a good sense from them and some will even give you a list of those they've heard from other patients are good.

I got so anxious waiting for the biopsy results, that I wound up back in the ER, again with all those chest pains and more. It had been several days since the biopsy and I hadn't heard from the dr. Interesting, he actually noticed in his system that I was in the ER and ironically, at the same time he had been trying to call me, but couldn't figure out why I didn't answer or call back. He then came over to the ER to see me and we had a real good meeting and right then and there he arranged for all the scans, and I felt so much better, because he became so involved and walked me through everything.

Never in the ER did they ever right me off as "just an anxiety case". They said that I had so much going on with the tumor, which was not small, and the chest muscle (costochondritis) problems that I had good reason to be there and that I should not just chalk all my "freaking out" up to anxiety.

Rita, my heart goes out to you and I can only implore you to just hang in there and trust that things will all fall into place. Don't get hung up on the tumor size or try to guess a stage, etc. It will all be revealed in the not too distant future, and the time between now and then will not make a difference. Take care of yourself, look for a real good surgeon and deal with that person first if you can. My surgeon made all the later referrals for scans, an oncologist, etc. I've never been so grateful to anyone!

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Sep 25, 2021 08:33AM - edited Sep 25, 2021 05:51PM by exbrnxgrl

rita,

One thing you might consider letting go of, even just a bit, is worrying about the time component. Breast cancer is not an emergency! It needs to be taken care of , of course, but it is not rapidly growing and spreading as you imagine. As I mentioned previously, breast cancers are slow growing for the most part. Having a biopsy this week or the next will make no difference. Move quicker? Again, it's not an emergency and not immediately life threatening.

Yes, there is a lot to learn about bc. There are types, sub-types, hormone profiles, etc. It can be overwhelming which is why you should try to stick with what you actually know right now and not imagine the worst. Please read what everyone has written about tumor size. Your tumor has likely not doubled or even grown noticeably. It is simply that different types of imaging view things differently. These images provide estimates, period.

I have never been overweight, I have a mostly good diet and do many things “right" in terms of overall lifestyle. I still developed bc. So, I will be a bit forceful here. Stop, just stop catastrophizing. It does absolutely nothing positive for you. You said you’re a planner? Surely you understand that you can't plan without all the pertinent information, correct? So there is no plan to make at the moment. Yes, waiting is hard and we all have been there but all kind of terrible things are NOT likely happening while you wait.

Bilateral mx 9/7/11 with one step ns reconstruction. As of 11/21/11, 2cm met to upper left femur Dx 7/8/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/7/2011 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 11/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 11/21/2011 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 11/21/2011 Bone Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2014 Femara (letrozole) Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane)
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Sep 30, 2021 07:47AM Sunshine99 wrote:

ritac97, you haven't posted since the 25th. How are you? Let us know.

(((hugs)))

Carol

Cancer has progressed to my bones. I pray that it never enters my soul. Dx 11/2/2007, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIA, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/26/2020, ILC/IDC, Stage IV, metastasized to bone, ER+/PR-, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 4/22/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 5/5/2020 External: Bone Radiation Therapy 5/12/2020 External: Bone Targeted Therapy 6/10/2020 Ibrance (palbociclib)
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Sep 30, 2021 09:07AM edwards750 wrote:

Bless your heart Rita we all feel your pain physically and emotionally. There is no quick fix to ease your anxiety and all the positive things about where breast cancer treatments are today are encouraging but they won’t allay your fears about the DX.

However, there are many of us who have gone through it and are here to tell our stories. I was DX in 2011 with IDC, Stage 1b, Grade 1. Those numberswon’t mean anything to you yet but according to my breast surgeon they were the best I could hope for.

I am the poster person for worrying so it was a challenge for me to stay distracted and not dwell on the situation or the what if’s. My survival kit including talking to people who had been through it and joining a support group at church. Trust me it helped a lot.

I had friends and family support but talking with the group was the most beneficial. It’s hard to relate when you haven’t had to deal with it. Empathy is always good too.

Idk if you are a religious person or not and I’m no fanatic but I reached out to the one person who could get me through this without having a nervous breakdown. A priest once told me when I told him I didn’t want to hear that God didn’t give you more than you could handle and he said who do you think helps you get through this?

Good luck. Keep the faith and keep us posted.

Diane

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Sep 30, 2021 04:19PM ritac97 wrote:

Sunshine99 Hi Carol.

Warning! What I write below will be a real bummer for some people so avoid it if you dislike negativity.

I took a break from the cancer topic for a few days after I got the results of the MRI. It really put me into a tailspin when they said my tumor was twice as large as the previous mammogram/ultrasound estimated. I knew it was bad and wanted to know how bad so I "googled" like I had been warned against doing. I didn't want to bring down everyone on here so I just stayed away. One report classified tumors as small, medium and large and gave the prognosis for each category. They considered large to be 2 cm to 5 cm. WTH? Mine is over 6 cm!!! I'm not even on their chart! It's upsetting to me that it has grown so large. I keep hearing about how slow breast cancer grows. So how did they miss it on last year's mammogram?

Yesterday I had my biopsy. I asked them if they could hurry with the results because they estimated it would be a week but they said the doctor would have had to put a rush on it. So a 6 cm tumor with an irregular lymph node wasn't reason to rush? So again I wait and wonder what this massive thing is doing inside my body. I asked my doctor for anxiety medicine because the antidepressant she put me on made my anxiety worse and all she gave me was allergy medicine to make me sleepy. I can't take it in the mornings because I'll be drowsy all day. I just want to not feel bad. Is that wrong?

I keep hoping I wake up from this and find that it was all a nightmare. I've been afraid to eat any of my normal foods and have been living on salad (super healthy green mix), turkey breast, salmon, blueberries, nuts and broccoli. I can't imagine eating like that the rest of my life though. I find myself craving pizza and hamburgers and spaghetti but am afraid to eat anything that will cause the cancer to grow even larger. The other night I got into the ice cream and ate about 1/4 cup. I'm usually not an ice cream eater (that's my husband's department) but I didn't want blueberries again. I just want my normal life back. It wasn't great but food was the one thing I could count on to make me feel better and now I've lost that.

My relatives keep wanting to talk to me about the cancer but I just want to be alone. There's nothing they can say to make me feel any better. I'm 50 years old with a 6.3 cm tumor in my breast (and something going on with the nearby lymph node) that wasn't detected until it caused pain. What could they possibly say to make it better? They give me example here and there about this person they know, etc. But the examples they give are like comparing apples and oranges. One had colon cancer and is alive 20 years later. One had breast cancer (diagnosed early) and they are doing fine. Find me someone who had a 6+ cm tumor upon first diagnosis and let me know how they are doing in 5 years or 10 or 30? Because before this I fully expected to live a long, healthy life like my grandmother who I take after and who died in her 90s even though she always battled her weight.

I can't even enjoy myself anymore. I live in Las Vegas and don't normally gamble much but my husband and I have been making a point of doing something fun every day. Well it's hard to stay out of the casinos because it can be a real mood booster to be around all the happy, excited crowds. Well I have won every time I've gone out (I'm up like $1400!). I'm not a big spender so this is a significant amount. But do I care? No. What good is money to me right now when I could be dead in a few years? It's like I have a gaping wound and should feel good about someone removing a splinter.

Anyway, let me respond to some of the others who posted this past week.

scaredme I suspect the pandemic caused a lot of mammograms to be delayed and now they are slowly catching up. Plus the shortage of workers isn't helping. I know I have to research surgeons etc. but it just seems like I have no energy to do much of anything. I'm a little worried this morning because my throat tickles a little and I feel like I have fluid in my lungs. I've been going out in public with my husband for at least a week now and that's all I would need is to catch Covid. I'm vaccinated but it was the J&J vaccine which is less effective. Plus my immune system is shot from stress. I hope it clears up by tomorrow. Regarding exercise, I can't imagine walking 10,000 steps. I'm not even sure how I'd do something like that. I have walked around my neighborhood a few times in the morning. That is a little over 2 miles. But then I end up sitting the rest of the day. I know it's not good but I really feel drained all the time now.

ThreeTree Sorry to hear you also suffer from anxiety. People don't know the feeling unless they've experienced it themselves. I've never reached the point of needing to go to the ER but then I always had food to turn to for comfort. I have averaged 5-6 hours of sleep per night for years now which is another symptom. As for where I live, I'm in Las Vegas. I think there are a couple cancer centers near me but I don't know one from the other. I did try researching a surgeon at one time but after seeing one with a lot bunch of 5 out of 5 ratings, I checked and they had all been left on the same day. It makes me question online ratings. I found my dentist that way and he turned out to be horrible. People have caught on now and it's easy to leave reviews for yourself in order to get more business. That's a good idea to talk to medical staff about it. That is, if they give the info. I know in the past I've asked but they don't like to say for fear of getting into trouble with their employer. I want to join a cancer support group locally and have researched it some but that's yet another thing that I've procrastinated on.

exbrnxgrl My tumor is over 6 cm. Either it is growing quickly or somehow last year's mammogram missed it. But the size is not something to scuff at. We're not talking a 2 cm that might be a 3 cm once it is surgically removed. This thing is growing towards my lymph nodes and each week it progresses a little further. Hard to not catastrophize with something this size and this dangerous inside you. And the pain I feel on a daily basis won't let me forget it's there. I'm not running around frantic or anything but I do realize the significance of having such a large tumor on my initial diagnosis. Statistics point to a link between tumor size and prognosis. So I'm already in deep $#@% before they even read me the biopsy results. I'm not freaking out or anything. I just realize that my situation isn't a good one.

edwards750 I also have looked into joining both a church group and a cancer survivor group. I have a great church right near me that I've been to before. I'll need to call them regarding joining a group because the pandemic shut down a lot of activities here in Las Vegas. I recently bought the audio version of the Bible and listen to that as I exercise. It is incredibly comforting and allays my fears, at least for a while (until I go online). I'm not expecting a miracle. I mean, why would God heal me over better Christians? But I know, in my heart, that whatever happens, I will be fine (even if that means death). Hey, I have a lot of great people waiting for me in Heaven. And I'm hoping to see my pets again someday too (it crushed me in 2017 when my cat died...she was 3 months shy of 21 and like my child).

Thanks to all for your caring and support.

Rita


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Sep 30, 2021 04:50PM ElaineTherese wrote:

"Find me someone who had a 6+ cm tumor upon first diagnosis and let me know how they are doing in 5 years or 10 or 30?"

I had a 5 cm tumor with a lovely satellite and one of my nodes was compromised. I'm doing just fine seven years later. And, there are breast cancer patients on BCO who've had 8 cm tumor+ and several compromised nodes who are living normal lives today, post-treatment. Go visit the Stage III survivors thread.

DX IDC June 28, 2014, 5 cm., 1 node tested positive (fine needle biopsy); 0/20 after neoadjuvant chemo + ALND; Grade 3; ER+ PR+ HER2+ Neoadjuvant chemotherapy starting 7/23/14 ACX 4, Taxol X 12, Perjeta X 4; Herceptin: one year Chemotherapy 7/22/2014 AC Targeted Therapy 9/16/2014 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy 9/16/2014 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 9/16/2014 Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 1/11/2015 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right, Underarm/Axillary Hormonal Therapy 2/24/2015 Aromasin (exemestane), Zoladex (goserelin) Radiation Therapy 3/8/2015 Breast, Lymph nodes
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Sep 30, 2021 04:50PM exbrnxgrl wrote:

rita,

I’m glad you took a bc break. It is easy to be overwhelmed and even after 10 years, I still take bc breaks. That can be a good coping technique!

I may be misunderstanding your situation. I thought that you haven’t had surgery yet but you seem certain the tumor is 6cm so I guess you have. If by chance you haven’t had any surgery then you don’t know exactly what size your tumor is until the final surgical pathology. Remember as a few of us mentioned, imaging is a an educated guestimate with respect to size and because imaging modalities differ, size measurements often differ as well. Again, looking at two different imaging modalities as a way to determine tumor growth is not accurate.

If you have had surgery, take a few minutes to fill in and make public your signature line when your pathology report is in. My caution against catastrophizing still stands. If you have not had surgery there is still so much that is not known and you are making a lot of assumptions. Because I care, I can’t say too strongly how you will increase your stress and anxiety by getting ahead of yourself and looking at worst case scenarios. I was dx’ed with stage IV mbc ten years ago. I have no control over most aspects of this disease but I found life with a terminal illness (stage IV is not curable) is best lived by focusing on the known and the here and now. Take care.

Bilateral mx 9/7/11 with one step ns reconstruction. As of 11/21/11, 2cm met to upper left femur Dx 7/8/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/7/2011 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 11/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 11/21/2011 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 11/21/2011 Bone Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2014 Femara (letrozole) Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane)
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Sep 30, 2021 05:20PM Sunshine99 wrote:

rita, thanks for checking in with us. I know that this a such a difficult time for you and believe me, we understand. As exbrnxgrl mentioned above, at this point, the EXACT size of your tumor is only a best guess. The final (sorry, bad choice of words) pathology will happen after surgery when your cancer is staged and graded. I actually don't even know or remember what my first cancer grade was, but I had a good team and together we came up with a treatment plan.

People will mean well when they tell you not to worry or when they share their stories of "so-and-so's" cancer. Ignore them if you can, avoid them if you can't. And while it's always important to "eat well" (whatever that means), don't let the stress of that add to what you are already feeling. Vegan, teetotalling, non smoking, thin people get cancer, too!

Post when you feel like it. I hope you feel the support here.

(((hugs)))

Carol

Cancer has progressed to my bones. I pray that it never enters my soul. Dx 11/2/2007, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIA, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/26/2020, ILC/IDC, Stage IV, metastasized to bone, ER+/PR-, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 4/22/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 5/5/2020 External: Bone Radiation Therapy 5/12/2020 External: Bone Targeted Therapy 6/10/2020 Ibrance (palbociclib)
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Oct 1, 2021 03:14AM Rah2464 wrote:

Rita - I am going to echo what some other posters have said, imaging doesn't always provide an accurate assessment of tumor size. Because the MRI is so sensitive, it can pick up some surrounding inflammation that could be construed as part of a tumor. Happened to me - my final tumor size was half of what we expected based on imaging.

I am so sorry you are having to face this but I am glad you found this community to vent the emotions and anxiety that come with a diagnosis. Wishing you all the very best.

Dx 5/23/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 6/26/2018 Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Hormonal Therapy 7/26/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Oct 1, 2021 06:46AM ThreeTree wrote:

Rita - I don't think I've ever known the actual size of my tumor. Initial imaging and the surgeon's educated guessing put it at around 6 cm, then I had neoadjuvant chemo (chemo before surgery) that shrunk it down a bit, but that sizing too was varied, depending on what the source was. The final pathology said something like 4 cm, but that was after the chemo had shrunk it all some. I honestly don't know what my initial tumor size really was if I was to be asked. I average it all and say 5 cm just to give a number. Tumor size is one of many factors, and yes, the larger it is, the more concern there is, but it is not "everything" or the big "deciding factor" in your ultimate prognosis or anything. As others have said, there are people on this board with 8, 10, 12 cm tumors, or multiple tumors that add up to very large numbers, and they are still around.

As someone else on here said, look at the Stage III thread. I think there is even a section for "Large Tumors". Many on there are years out and doing OK. I'm only 3 years out from my diagnosis, not 5, 10, or 30, but I'm still here and the large size was/is the biggest concern, but so far, so good. There are so many factors that go into prognosis, you can't just focus on one.

Re finding a surgeon, I hope you don't mind, but I looked for something like the "Top Doctors" I can find in my area, but in Las Vegas. I didn't see nearly as much info for your area as I did mine, but I did run across this list of "peer reviewed" oncologists in Las Vegas, in case it is any help to you, WHEN YOU ARE READY and ONLY IF YOU WANT TO SEE IT. It doesn't list surgeons, but it does note oncologists. The ones for my area cover a wider range of specialties, but a good oncologist should be able to refer you to a good surgeon. Like the ones in my area, my understanding was that this list was compiled by asking medical providers who they would go to, or who they would send a family member to. If you look at these names and then see if you can get medical staff to weigh in about any of them, it might help narrow down your search. I know what you mean about staff not wanting to offer names, but I found that if you mention a name you can start to get comments, like, "Oh, he/she's the only person I would ever go to!" "That's who I sent my Dad to!", etc. So if you work it a little, you can start to get some info from them. Again, this is just if you're interested, and I'm sorry if it was presumptive of me to locate this list.

https://vegasinc.lasvegassun.com/news/2021/aug/26/...

Rita do take care, and let us hear from you from time to time. We do care. Again, I can relate to your anxiety and I can only commend you for facing this head on instead of burying your head in the sand for awhile like I did. I suppose a "happy medium" (happy?) is the best route, but we're all only human.

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Oct 1, 2021 07:43AM Sam2U wrote:


"Find me someone who had a 6+ cm tumor upon first diagnosis and let me know how they are doing in 5 years or 10 or 30?"

Hug Hi!!!! 11.5 cm here. 2 Positive nodes. Extracapsular extension. Scared to death when first diagnosed. Still here 8 years later and plan on many more.

Sending you strength and support.

Dx 10/9/2013, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 10/25/2013, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/12/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel Surgery 12/13/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Dx 12/23/2013, ILC, Left, 6cm+, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 2/40 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 1/16/2014 AC Chemotherapy 3/18/2014 Taxol (paclitaxel) Radiation Therapy 6/17/2014 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 8/9/2014
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Oct 1, 2021 07:55AM Aram wrote:

Rita, tumor size is important but not as important as how it is going to respond to treatment. For example Her2+ tumors tend to grow very fast but they are usually very responsive to treatment. Unfortunately, nobody can tell you how your body is going to respond to treatment and that is something only time can show. And it is ok to be scared and even negative. But, as someone who couldn't sleep or eat for the first two weeks after my dignosis, I can tell you that it can get better when you have a treatment plan in place. I went through all stages of mourning my healthy body until I started to accept my new reality. I still get sad or mad sometimes but I can eat and sleep now. I hope to be here in 5, 10 or 20 yeats but I have accepted I might not be. I have decided to live by what I know today and to live by 'tomorrow is not promised to anyone'

Dx at 40, BRCA1 Dx 2/5/2021, IDC, Left, 1cm, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Dx 2/5/2021, IDC, Left, 3cm, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Chemotherapy 3/10/2021 AC + T (Taxol) Targeted Therapy 6/2/2021 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy 6/2/2021 Herceptin (trastuzumab)
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Oct 1, 2021 09:02AM ThreeTree wrote:

rita - I forgot to mention, that re your diet of nuts, salmon, broccoli, blueberries, etc., that's just about how I eat these days too. Have been for a long time. I have found that the craving for things like pizza and spaghetti simply goes away after a while of just eating things like a turkey thigh, some veggies, and a bowl of berries for dessert, day in and day out; snack on walnuts and dried fruit. I do indulge in ice cream and wine every so often now - holidays and an occasional Sunday, but that's enough and it keeps me feeling like I can still indulge if I really want to. I used to come home from work and have a glass or two of wine to wind down, enjoy with dinner, etc., but I have lost all desire for that too, My late mother's would be birthday is coming up on the 31st and I will probably have a little pumpkin tart (or ice cream as she just loved it!) and a glass of wine in her memory, but then I probably won't have anything besides fish, chicken, veggies, and fruit and nuts, until Thanksgiving again. It works for me, and it might just work for you too! You really can lose the cravings after awhile.

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Oct 4, 2021 10:55AM ritac97 wrote:

Hi everyone,

Sorry I am slow to respond to previous posts. I will get to them soon as they really made me optimistic about my condition and I appreciate it. I just wanted to let you know that I received a call today and it was confirmed that I do have breast cancer. They haven't yet completed the testing on the markers yet and I was assigned a breast surgeon which I can't seem to find any info on. Dr. Arsalan Salamat. I thought I had a week to research surgeons so I've been procrastinating. If anyone can find any info on this doctor, please let me know.

One bit of good news is that my lymph node tested negative for cancer. There seemed to have only been one that was enlarged. So I am cautiously optimistic about that. I know the final staging doesn't happen until surgery. I've been praying a lot and hope for continual good news. I also found out that the cancer has spread beyond the breast duct (or something like that). I tried to understand what they were telling me but obviously I need to get this thing out of me a.s.a.p. before it continues to spread.

I am about to go out soon so I apologize again for delaying my responses to earlier posts. I will get to them soon as there is a lot I'd like to say. Thanks to all and have great days.

Rita

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Oct 4, 2021 11:11AM ritac97 wrote:

ThreeTree: Thank you for the helpful link. I am checking it to find an oncologist and surgeon. I'd like to transfer my care to Cancer Treatment Centers which is located here in Las Vegas. I have a lot to do. Wasn't expecting this to come back so quickly.

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Oct 4, 2021 12:14PM LoverofJesus wrote:

Rita I’m so sorry you have found yourself here. I too have a large one. But, my oncologist says I can be cured. And my prognosis is good. I am about to. Finish chemo and have surgery. It’s all mentally hard I know. I have struggled from day to day. Just be good to yourself and don’t panic yet.

I talked to a stage 3 survivor the Other day that is 16 years out. And there are several stage 3 survivors on here. One I speak with often is now 6 going on 7 years out. This is not a death sentence. Stay positive and if you pray, pray for God to heal you. I will be praying for you on my prayer list.

It is scary and the next several months will be crazy. But it’s all doable. Be good to you.

I had to start anti anxiety meds at first and get anti depression meds. I’ve never had to take anything hardly and now I’m a walking drug store. I try to eat well but I’ll admit I’m not doing great at that. I’m just trying to eat good 80% of the time.

Praying for you and sending hugs

LoverofJesus

Dx 5/22/2021, ILC, Right, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Chemotherapy 6/16/2021 AC + T (Taxol)
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Oct 4, 2021 12:55PM moth wrote:

Hi, I'm sorry you have confirmation that it is malignant. That is sucky news indeed.

I think the 'spreading out of the duct' they were trying to say it is "Invasive Ductal Carcinoma" aka IDC (as opposed to ductal carcinoma in situ DCIS).

Once you get a treatment plan organized, it will all start feeling more doable and less panic inducing.

hang in there

I take weekends off

Initial dx at 50. Seriously?? “Sometimes the future changes quickly and completely and we’re left with only the choice of what to do next." blog: Never Tell Me the Odds

Dx 12/2017, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/5 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 12/12/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 2/13/2018 AC + T (Taxol) Radiation Therapy 8/13/2018 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 2/2020, IDC, Stage IV, metastasized to liver/lungs, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/18/2020 Taxol (paclitaxel) Immunotherapy 3/18/2020 Tecentriq (atezolizumab) Chemotherapy 11/25/2020 Abraxane (albumin-bound or nab-paclitaxel) Radiation Therapy 12/8/2020 External Dx 12/9/2020, IDC, Right, Stage IV, metastasized to lungs, Grade 3, ER+/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Hormonal Therapy 12/15/2020 Femara (letrozole) Dx 1/28/2021, IDC, Left, Stage IV, metastasized to bone Radiation Therapy 3/2/2021 External: Bone
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Oct 4, 2021 01:29PM ThreeTree wrote:

Rita, from what I can see about the surgeon you were referred to, he had been in Illinois and recently relocated to Las Vegas.

https://www.optumcare.com/locations-nav/providers/...

If you google his name, there are also videos of him speaking, etc. (I didn't watch any of them, but you might want to.) To me, his credentials look as good as anybody's, so it's probably an issue of location and "fit" for you now. Maybe there's some word of mouth info about him around your town?

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Oct 4, 2021 07:29PM ritac97 wrote:

Hi all. Going to respond to earlier posts now. Feeling optimistic that they didn't detect cancer in my lymph nodes but I realize it's not clear what's going on until I have my surgery and see what stage I'm in and also what the remaining results of the biopsy are. I am in the process of switching my doctor to M. Ferra Lin-Duffy of Comprehensive Cancer Centers here in NV. I read good things about her and she is a breast oncology surgeon vs a general surgeon which was assigned me previously. I'm going to call tomorrow to make an appointment so I can get things started.

I do have a couple questions for the forum:

1. Who decides whether you have a lumpectomy vs having the entire breast removed? Is that an insurance thing? Because I would like both of my breasts removed. I would feel safer without natural breast tissue. It seems like I'm high risk for recurrence based on genetics, weight, age, tumor size, lifestyle, etc.

2. What is everyone's opinion on receiving chemo before surgery? The doctor's office that I'm switching away from said that I would receive chemo first due to the size of my tumor and in an effort to shrink it. However, I read online that going back to 2015 or 2017 or something that they linked chemo prior to surgery to cancer spreading to other organs. Just wondering if anyone has researched this.

ElaineTherese: Thanks for sharing your story. I feel better about my situation hearing from people like you and will check out the stage III thread. I'm moved on from bone-chilling fear to acceptance with a side of concern.

exbrnxgrl I have no had surgery. I've had the MRI and biopsy. Was confirmed cancer today but everyone along the way seemed pretty certain that it was anyway. MRI said tumor was 6.3 cm, ultrasound said 3.4 cm. Not sure what it is now because someone had mentioned that the MRI could overestimate the size of the tumor when it sees inflammation. Working on getting a surgeon ready and still waiting on my biopsy results. The only thing I got from the phone call today was that it is cancer, it was not detected in the lymph node that was tested, and something about it spreading or moving out from the duct. I really wasn't sure what she was saying but that's what I got from it. I'm doing better with the stress part. I think I'm past the freak-out stage and have accepted my new reality. Antidepressant is helping though I've noticed that I'm not losing any weight in spite of dieting so I may decide to discontinue them.

Sunshine99 Hi Carol, thanks for the (((hugs))). I'll probably loosen up my eating habits once my treatment starts but for now I'm doing everything in my power to keep the cancer from growing/spreading. That means eating super healthy (exercise has gotten better but still not doing all I should). I suspect that now the biopsy has confirmed cancer that things will move more quickly. I'm waiting to hear the rest of the biopsy results, not that I'll understand what they mean. One thing that's been bugging me about the biopsy is that I had bruising on my breast afterwards. It got me thinking that if blood spilled under my skin, could that have spread cancer cells?

Rah2464 That's awesome! Would love for that to be what they find when they perform my surgery! Here's hoping I'm full of inflammation! lol. Thanks for sharing.

ThreeTree I checked out the website and saw where it mentioned oncologists. I might have done things in the wrong order but the doctor's office who performed my ultrasound and diagnostic mammogram referred me to a surgeon so I thought I should find another surgeon right away so I could get the referral sent over and not delay my treatment. I found Dr Lin-Duffy and heard some good things about her. I was told that I should meet with her first and that she will look at the rest of the biopsy results and then assign me to an oncologist based on those. However, I noticed on your list from the link that several names were from the Comprehensive Cancer Center where I will be treated so it's very likely that I'll end up with one of those oncologists after all.

My cravings for junk food have lessened over time but I still plan on relaxing my diet once treatment starts. I can't imagine going the rest of my life without eating red meat. I don't even want to think about never again going to a Las Vegas buffet and treating myself to a prime rib dinner. So most likely I will eat healthy most of the time and treat myself on occasion. I probably should have been eating that way all along.

Sam2U Wow, great survival story. Thank you for sharing. I think everyone is scared when they are first diagnosed but I think the fear factor increases exponentially with each cm increase in tumor size. Still waiting to hear what type of BC I have which is more important than tumor size they say. I'm happy you are still here with us and may you have many, many more years to come!

Aram Yeah, I'm still waiting on those results from the biopsy. If my tumor is indeed 6 cm and the MRI was accurate, it would be that it grew super fast because how else could it be that big and be missed on a mammogram in Feb 2020? I should be getting the rest of the results back this week. But that is a good attitude to have. Everyone should be living life as if tomorrow wasn't guaranteed. I took life for granted before this BC scare. I wasted a lot of it. Now I make an effort to live more and also prepare for when I won't be around. Whether that is sooner or later, who knows? I could come out of this cancer scare with a mild case that is fully curable only to die some other way.

LoverofJesus I pray that your surgery goes well and you completely heal from this. It looks like you were diagnosed not long ago also. My doctor didn't give me anxiety medicine. She gave me an antidepressant and allergy medicine which I'm not happy about because it makes me too tired to function. So I have to choose between anxiety and drowsiness. But most of my peace has been obtained through improving my relationship with God. I'm ashamed to say that even though I considered myself a Christian for most of my life, I rarely went to church and have yet to read the Bible. I tried but I'm not much of a reader and couldn't make it through the Old Testament. So now I listen to it on audio while I exercise and when I have questions about something I've heard, I make a point to get answers. I find it comforting and healing. Thank you for sharing the info on the stage 3 survivors and for praying for me. I still feel scared on occasion but this has been good for me because it's reminded me that my time here on Earth is finite and I should get my affairs in order regardless of whether I die next week or 40 years from now.

moth I was prepared to hear that it was malignant so it wasn't much of a surprise. Most of the people who looked at it came to that conclusion. It could be IDC. I won't know for several more days. To be honest, when they are telling me things my mind starts racing and I don't catch but half of what they tell me. I'll just wait for the final biopsy results before I do anymore guessing. I would have guessed that cancer had spread to my lymph node because it was enlarged/irregular but they said they didn't detect cancer in it so I probably shouldn't guess anything anymore.

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Oct 4, 2021 09:18PM - edited Oct 4, 2021 09:20PM by exbrnxgrl

Happy to hear that you are now post freak out! I'm about 15 years older than you are but will off you words of wisdom from my mother: Don't borrow trouble! Learning to stay present and dealing with facts that you know right now will lower your stress level .

As for diet, becoming a vegetarian or vegan guarantees nothing. Many people feel better after adapting healthier diets and that is a great benefit. I had grown less fond of red meat prior to bc but still eat animal based proteins in the form of chicken, fish and some dairy. Sometimes I want red meat or sweets or a drink and I will happily consume them. It brings me happiness and that is good medicine! I would put myself into the 85/15 % category .

This is purely anecdotal but a good illustration of how our personal experiences influence our attitude. I have lived with mbc, and no progression, for ten years. My habits are not perfect but not awful either. My sister lived the cleanest lifestyle imaginable from an early age, far before that was ever a thing. Shortly after her 50th birthday she was diagnosed with a uterine sarcoma and passedaway barely six months afterwards.

I am certainly not suggesting an unhealthy diet or lifestyle but don't worry about it compulsively or feel like you can never enjoy the pleasures of a meal you want. If you are going to focus on living, don't forget joy!

Bilateral mx 9/7/11 with one step ns reconstruction. As of 11/21/11, 2cm met to upper left femur Dx 7/8/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/7/2011 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 11/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 11/21/2011 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 11/21/2011 Bone Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2014 Femara (letrozole) Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane)
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Oct 5, 2021 06:49AM ThreeTree wrote:

Rita - Re seeing the surgeon first and then having him/her refer you to an oncologist: That's how it went for me, and I was glad that it did. I had gone to the ER for a different issue (separate story) and while there, also told them about a breast issue I was having. They did an ultrasound and referred me to a surgeon. I did switch from the one they recommended to another one there in the same office, as he was more of a breast surgeon. He did the biopsies, made the referral to the oncologist and arranged for all my scans - even personally walking over to the radiology place, making me an appointment, and then coming back and telling me how I could go the next morning for the scan and still make my late morning meeting I'd told him I had. He was fantastic and that process worked real well for me.

I think seeing the person who will likely do the surgery first, is a good way to go, because ultimately it's the surgery that gives you the most benefit and it gives both you and the surgeon a real good look at what's going on and needs to be done. So glad to hear that you are making progress and getting a bit better of a handle on things.

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Oct 5, 2021 07:11AM ritac97 wrote:

Hi group,

Got part of my biopsy back yesterday. Still waiting on the markers. Trying to understand what I'm reading. I think it is Grade 2 (only barely) and cancer was NOT detected in the suspicious looking lymph node (benign lymphoid tissue). If anyone understands other parts of the report, good or bad, please explain. Thanks.

- Procedure: Needle biopsy

- Specimen Laterality: Left

- Tumor Site: Left breast 1-2:00 core bx

- Histologic Type: Invasive carcinoma of no

special type (ductal)

- Histologic Grade (Nottingham Histologic Score)

- Glandular (Acinar)/Tubular Differentiation:

Score 3

- Nuclear Pleomorphism: Score 3

- Mitotic Rate: Score 1

- Overall Grade: Grade 2 of 3

- Greatest dimension of largest invasive focus:

at least 0.6 cm.

- Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS): Not identified.

- Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS): Not

identified.

- Lymphovascular invasion: Not identified.

- Microcalcifications: Not identified.

- Other Findings: Black ink verified.

- Biomarker Studies: ER, PR, and HER-2/neu will

be performed on block A1 of the core sample. A

supplement will follow.

Immunohistochemistry study shows the tumor cells

are positive for AE1/AE3 and E-cadherin and

negative for p63, chrogranin and synaptophysin.

All controls stain appropriately.

exbrnxgrl: Prime rib buffet here I come! j/k. But I would like to share things I've read on here with all my female relatives. I'm sure many are looking at me and saying that I got cancer due to my weight, stress, eating habits, genetic history, etc but it's important for them to know that women who have none of these risk factors are getting BC and that they need to be vigilant with their mammograms and self checks.

ThreeTree: I will be calling my new surgeon today. My options were rather limited here in Las Vegas but I did want someone who specialized in breast surgery vs someone who was a general surgeon. And transferring my care to a cancer center should work in my favor as well. When I told the name of the surgeon to the lady processing the referral she commented that the surgeon was really good and use to work at their center, so that's a good sign. I'm still hoping to get both of my breasts removed vs a lumpectomy. I'm not sure my insurance would approve it but my aunt had both removed and I think I should too, if only to ease my mind about future relapses.

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Oct 5, 2021 07:48AM exbrnxgrl wrote:

rita,

I guess it’s human nature to want to find out why something happens. We have a hard time accepting randomness, yet stuff sometimes happens without knowing why. While it is true that some things can lower the risk of developing bc nothing can eliminate it. Please share my sister’s story with your relatives and mine as well. And in case your relatives think my familial cancers are genetic, I have had extensive genetic testing and no mutations were found. Take care.



Bilateral mx 9/7/11 with one step ns reconstruction. As of 11/21/11, 2cm met to upper left femur Dx 7/8/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/7/2011 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 11/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 11/21/2011 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 11/21/2011 Bone Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2014 Femara (letrozole) Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane)
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Oct 5, 2021 07:52AM moth wrote:

ritac, I just want to make sure that you're clear that a mastectomy does not prevent a metastatic recurrence. Sometimes it doesn't even prevent a local recurrence but it does lower the risk of those greatly. However women here have had local recurrence.... but the real important one is the metastatic one as that has no cure. Just so you're making decisions with all the info.

I take weekends off

Initial dx at 50. Seriously?? “Sometimes the future changes quickly and completely and we’re left with only the choice of what to do next." blog: Never Tell Me the Odds

Dx 12/2017, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/5 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 12/12/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 2/13/2018 AC + T (Taxol) Radiation Therapy 8/13/2018 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 2/2020, IDC, Stage IV, metastasized to liver/lungs, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/18/2020 Taxol (paclitaxel) Immunotherapy 3/18/2020 Tecentriq (atezolizumab) Chemotherapy 11/25/2020 Abraxane (albumin-bound or nab-paclitaxel) Radiation Therapy 12/8/2020 External Dx 12/9/2020, IDC, Right, Stage IV, metastasized to lungs, Grade 3, ER+/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Hormonal Therapy 12/15/2020 Femara (letrozole) Dx 1/28/2021, IDC, Left, Stage IV, metastasized to bone Radiation Therapy 3/2/2021 External: Bone
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Oct 5, 2021 08:32AM Sunshine99 wrote:

rita, it sounds like you're getting some good counsel here. I would second what moth said about mastectomy not necessarily preventing a recurrence. I had a mast on my cancer side. I think we felt that based on the size of my tumor (large-ish) and the size of my breasts (small), I'd have a better outcome.

I did meet with a plastic surgeon, but he creeped me out and was unprofessional, in my opinion, so I opted to stay flat on that side. As I said to an oncologist friend, who almost choked when I told him, "I don't tilt when I walk".

Do I wish I had had both breasts removed? Sometimes. But not enough to go back and do it now.

Regarding chemo, I was part of a study and was randomized to get chemo. I was actually glad because I wanted to throw everything at this cancer that I could. I did not have radiation as there was nothing left to radiate, and my lymph nodes were negative.

As far as the "Whys" goes, I don't dwell too much on those. Why do we get breast cancer? Because we have breasts - men, too. Why do some have mets? Because we have cells. And meaning absolutely NO disrespect to anyone, "thinking positive" will NOT change your outcome. It may help your mental status and make it easier to be around you (she said with a grin) but just as a "bad" attitude didn't cause your cancer, a "good" attitude will not cure you. Just my two cents on that one.

I will continue to follow your story. I'm glad you are getting a good medical team together. That will really help your peace of mind. Oh, and one other thought: After my first diagnosis, I was consumed with thoughts of cancer. However, one day (I don't remember when) after I had finished active treatment, I remember realizing one afternoon that I had not woken up that morning thinking about cancer. That was a pretty cool thing to realize.

More (((hugs))) to you.

Carol

Cancer has progressed to my bones. I pray that it never enters my soul. Dx 11/2/2007, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIA, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/26/2020, ILC/IDC, Stage IV, metastasized to bone, ER+/PR-, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 4/22/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 5/5/2020 External: Bone Radiation Therapy 5/12/2020 External: Bone Targeted Therapy 6/10/2020 Ibrance (palbociclib)
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Oct 5, 2021 08:53AM Spookiesmom wrote:

My first time around in 2012, the cancer was big, in my nodes. Told surgeon I wanted both gone. He did as I asked. Second time around in 2019 I found a lump in my nodes on the other side. That was removed, then rads. Just had a nuclear scan, thought it was in a bone. It is not.

All that to agree with Moth. That a single mastectomy doesn’t guarantee reoccurrence elsewhere. Doesn’t matter if they are big or small, the surgeon Can’t get All the tissue. Even with Chemo and rads, there is still a chance a cell escaped. Diet and exercise won’t help there

So be aware if you decide on bmx. Ask your surgeon lots of questions. Same for your MO.

First time IDGgrade 3, stage 3. Second time, found lump myself. That made me stage 4. Dx IDC, Stage IIIA, Grade 3
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Oct 5, 2021 10:33AM Lumpybumpy123 wrote:

I know how you feel, having gone through the same mental tortures. Try not to beat your self up. You will get the BEST care. All the medics concerned with cancer have seen it all before and if you confide in them they will help you. My doctor recently told me breast cancer awareness and treatments have come on in leaps and bounds in recent years.

He wasn't wrong, it is OK to be scared, but a problem halved is a problem shared I find. There are people out there who can help you, use them that is what they are there for. Put yourself in there hands and let it all out, they will certainly be able to help you. I am 67 and felt the same way. Having just had a lumpectomy I know the amount of diligence the medical staff have, and care and concern. You are not alone! Good luck for the future and do not give up .

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Oct 5, 2021 11:56AM Cowgirl13 wrote:

Here's a link to a post Beesie wrote re lumpectomy vs mastectomy. Lots of good info and I just want to reinforce what others have written earlier.

https://community.breastcancer.org/forum/91/topics/868997?page=2#idx_40

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning the Devil says: 'Oh crap! She's up! Dx 5/28/2009, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ Surgery 6/17/2009 Chemotherapy 8/3/2009 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 12/21/2009 Hormonal Therapy 2/23/2010 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Oct 5, 2021 01:13PM HopeHeal wrote:

RitaC, sorry you are here but welcome to the journey. I was bewildered as you are months ago. From what I have seen and experienced, this road has ups and downs of good and negative news. I hope things go well for you and since there are so many treatments available and between the triad of chemo/drugs, radiation and surgery am pretty sure you will experience some positive outcomes.

Moth, I just want to say I have been following your blog and it has been so helpful in getting me through. I am pulling for you too.

Dx 3/1/2021, DCIS/IDC, Left, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/9/2021 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 9/27/2021 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast Chemotherapy 12/16/2021 Xeloda (capecitabine)

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