I was 28 years old, only a few years after I graduated from college. I had a beautiful son and a great career. It was then that I noticed a ping pong sized lump in my left breast. I waited a week before I went to the doctors, thinking I had just banged into something and that it would heal on its own. When I did go to the doctors they said I was much too young for breast cancer and that it was most likely a cyst, but they sent me to the breast clinic to be examined anyway. After many biopsies, mammograms, and a breast MRI, I was told that I had breast cancer. At the time the breast cancer only seemed to be in my breast, so we started to schedule a mastectomy for the following week. Before my surgery I was going to have to meet with an oncologist to discuss chemo after surgery, have a CAT scan, brain MRI, bone scan, and PET Scan just to be sure everything was contained to the breast.
Two days before my scheduled surgery I found out that the cancer had spread to my liver and sacral spine. I underwent a liver biopsy, however it was clear at that point that everything had changed. My surgery was cancelled and I was no longer curable. I was metastatic, and at some point I was going to die of breast cancer. My plan for surgery was changed to chemotherapy first, then possibly surgery, radiation, and more chemotherapy. I was going to be on some sort of chemotherapy for the rest of my life. My doctors never gave me a timeline, yet I knew that living another 5 years would be a dream.
I am now 32, and my son is 12. Thankfully the drug regimens I have been on have kept the cancer at bay and I am currently considered No Evidence of Disease, which means the cancer is too small to be detected on scans. I am almost 4 years out, and I have no plans on going anywhere anytime soon. Thanks to medical research for metastatic breast cancer I am still here, and my son still has his mother.
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The best defense against breast cancer is finding it early. Pledge to schedule a mammogram with your doctor today A mammogram is an x-ray picture of the breast. Screening mammograms are used to check for breast cancer in women who have no signs or symptoms of the disease. Diagnostic mammograms are used to check for breast cancer after a lump or other sign or symptom of the disease has been…
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