Introduce Yourself

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PeachRose
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Monday, March 25, 2013 2:27 AM
Hello Everyone,
Following instructions, Here goes:  I am Nancy, aka PeachRose, from Los Angeles.  I was diagnosed with breast cancer in October 2007.  Almost immediately it was determined to be Stage 4, with extensive bone mets and a small spot in the liver.  I chose to do a mastectomy, with immediate full flap reconstruction.  It was optional due to Stage 4. 
 
First plastic surgeon I saw told me it was a waste of my time as I was going to die.  Wow, did my Oncologist tell him off!!!  Second plastic surgeon was a genius and my reconstruction, with its unintended tummy tuck, looks great.  I had surgery on my lumbar spine, as there were 2 collapsed vertebrae.  And I always wondered why my back hurt so much!  A few months later the lumbar spine was radiated for paliative purposes only.  Everything they do for me is palliative only, given that I am STage 4. 
 
I have 2 daughters, now 24 and 16.  Older Daughter has Cystic Fibrosis, a life threatening health condition with no cure.  At the time I was diagnosed my husband was in the end stage of emphysema/COPD.  He died in 2011.  So I worry constantly about my daughters, given that I may not live very long myself.  My goal from the start has been to see Younger Daughter graduate from high school.  When I hit my 6 year survivor mark, I set a new goal, see her graduate from college.  Only hope I make it.
 
I have later had radiation to my right hip and left rib cage.  I was on hormone therapy (Armidex) for 6 years.  I also did Zometa for 3 years, but developed osteonecrosis of the jaw and had to quit that .  The open spot in my jaw finally healed in December 2012, so the Oncologist wants to put me on the injectable version of the med, )can't recall the name) but I have to get dentist approval first.
 
Arimidex worked well for me until last August (2012) when scans showed a bunch of new bone mets.  Oncologist switched me to Affinitor and the insurance finally agreed to do a PET scan.  PET showed a liver met in addition to the new bone activity.  So I stopped Affinitor, although it was too soon to know if it was truly effective or not.  In December I began treatment with Xeloda then did CT scans in February.  They showed the bone mets had stabilized, the liver met shrunk slightly, BUT there were nodules in the pleural cavity of my lung.  Scary stuff.  I am still digesting this information as the lung part of it was just disclosed to me last week.
 
The new gameplan is 2 more cycles of Xeloda and then repeat scans.  If growth has stopped/hopefully shrunk or disappeared, I will continue with Xeloda.  However, if not I will be on to something else.  She did not tell me what that might be.  I am scared it will finally be full chemo, with hair loss and all the accompanying nastiness.  I am also scared that I am starting down the road to death and I can't let that happen now.  I am so worried about my daughters.  My children have only 2 aunts, no uncles, and no cousins.  They would be all alone.
 
So sorry that was so long, but you said to cover it all, so I tried!  I am hoping to find some support here and maybe offer some myself.  I have been almost 7 years with Stage 4, while living in incredible stress, so that has to show it can be done!!!

Tricia Keegan
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Monday, March 25, 2013 2:37 AM
Hi Rose and welcome, I'm sorry you've been fighting this so much and really hope you get a good response with your xeloda as many have had. It sounds like you're a very strong woman and I hope you don't need any stronger drugs but feel sure you'll handle that too if needs be, I'm sure you're in a scary place right now but take a deep breath and take one day at a time for now and we'll all be wishing the best for you. I know so many stage iv's who are now being treated as chronic rather than terminal and with so many new and better drugs coming out all the time the chances are this disease is not beating you yet!:)
Tricia Keegan...From Ireland Dx July '05 IDC 3/9 nodes pos..triple positive..a/c x 4..Taxol/herceptin x 12
Herceptin 1yr ..rads x35 oophorectomy Aug '06
Currently taking Arimidex /Zometa 1 x yearly
Carepage- survivortricia

PeachRose
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Monday, March 25, 2013 2:47 AM
Hi Kim,
Just wanted to say that you may be surprised at the surgery results.  I love mine, as no one told me how flat my tummy would be afterward!!  Heck, people pay to get the same look I got for "free" along with my reconstruction!  I am sort of joking here, but that is the way I, personally, felt.  Best wishes.
Nancy aka PeachRose
Stage 4 with bone, liver and lung mets
CarePage: MyLifeasProfessionalPatient 

TraceyBrown
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Friday, April 05, 2013 12:58 PM
Hi my name is Tracey my mom just found out Wednesday she has breast cancer I don't know to much more she is having her mri Monday to see if it's any where else and than will meet with a surgeon.  I don't know what to say or do, especially when she calls me crying and upset. She is 72 and has other health issues. I am trying to stay strong for her, but I alsohave a chronic illness and a pregnent daughter that is adopting the baby to a wondergul couple. So I am trying to stay strong for her as well. What can I do or say to my mom I will do anything for her and feel so helpless my heart hurts so bad imdont know what to do. My head is spinning out of control. 

Tricia Keegan
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Friday, April 05, 2013 3:27 PM
Hi Tracey and I'm sorry you have so much to deal with right now, if your Mom use's a computer do have her join us here, otherwise please assure her that early breast stage cancer nowadays is usually always treatable and there are many long term survivors here who can attest to that. Good luck with your Moms scan and do keep us posted!
Tricia Keegan...From Ireland Dx July '05 IDC 3/9 nodes pos..triple positive..a/c x 4..Taxol/herceptin x 12
Herceptin 1yr ..rads x35 oophorectomy Aug '06
Currently taking Arimidex /Zometa 1 x yearly
Carepage- survivortricia

Deb/akaMimi
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Friday, April 05, 2013 11:24 PM
Tracey, I need to be here more often to offer my experiences and knowledge...I know you are probably frightened about your Mom's diagnosis, but this is the place to come to for answers from many, many of us who have been there. In the meantime, hugs, love, prayers, and ask away, there is nothing you can ask that someone here can't answer...
Deb Bourland Allen/aka Mimi 1st Dx 2003, 3 lumpectomies, 18 rds chemo, 36 rds rads; recurrence in 2007, bilat mast w/DIEP recon; MRSA in abd wound; shattered L (radiated) elbow, 5 surgeries, have seen the light, coded twice, still here, butterfly kisses on wings of angels w/fairy dust sprinkles to all, just want to add I miss those we have lost, and I'm experiencing some problems suddenly that have me frightened...but remember, I'm a Texas gal, and tougher than most

isellrejer
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Friday, April 12, 2013 11:10 AM
Hi, My name is Jerri. I was just diagnosed 4/3/13 of DCIS grade 2, my biopsy was excisional. Dirty margins so I have decided to have a double mastectomy with reconstruction of silicone implants. My mastectomy date is 5/17/13. When I was diagnosed, I already knew in my heart it was cancer. I was just getting verification of it. I can only say I am glad it is me rather than my sisters, my mom or my daughters. I have been going to the same breast specialist for at least 10 years so I am very comfortable with him. We discussed my options and I chose what would be best for myself and my family. This is scary but I am just trying to think of all the positives. I will have a new grandbaby in October and I will get to snuggle and love all over her or him. I have a 5 year old grandson that I get to spoil as much as I want. Life is good!

Tricia Keegan
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Friday, April 12, 2013 12:17 PM
Hi Jerri and welcome, I'm sorry for your dx but you sound very positive and with that little boy and baby on the way too you're right in that life is good and you have everything to fight for. Good luck and please keep us posted when you can.:)
Tricia Keegan...From Ireland Dx July '05 IDC 3/9 nodes pos..triple positive..a/c x 4..Taxol/herceptin x 12
Herceptin 1yr ..rads x35 oophorectomy Aug '06
Currently taking Arimidex /Zometa 1 x yearly
Carepage- survivortricia

Ilene
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Friday, April 12, 2013 5:41 PM
Tracey and Jerri, welcome to our little family here in Komen land.  You're in a good place.

Tracey - as Tricia said, early stage breast cancer is highly treatable, so, hopefully, your mother will get that relatively good news.  The best thing you can do for her is just listen and let her cry if she wants to, and be there for her if she needs help with anything.  Perhaps you could even go with her to a doctor's appointment (for moral support to her and so that you can have some of your concerns and questions addressed as well). 

Jerri - again, welcome to the 'family.'  I'm sorry you had to join us, but you are in a good place.  The women who frequent this message board saved my sanity when I was going through my BC journey, and we are here for you too.  It sounds like you have some big plans in place.  Try to just go through things one at a time and not worry about the 'what ifs' (I know, easier said than done).  Also, try not to play 'Dr. Google.'  You will find a lot of information online, but so much of it is generalizations.  Every case of BC is different, every woman is different, everyone's treatment plan is different.  Feel free to vent, ask questions, anything you need.  We are here for you.

Sending positive energy to our newbie and to our newbie-supporter (and her mother)!   
Ilene
Cali
Diag 1/2006, DCIS-left, IDC-right, ER+/PR+, Node Neg, Stage 1
Bilat Mast 2/2006
6 Rnds Chemo (FAC)
Right then Left exp infect/removed
Right lat dorsi 10/2006
Left lat dorsi 1/2007
EXCHANGE 4/23/2007!
On Tamoxifen since 2007 (on 10-yr cycle)

sharonma
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Saturday, April 13, 2013 5:53 AM
Hi Tracey, you certainly have a full plate.  Just hearing the words, " you have cancer" is enough to send you into a tail spin.  Does she have another sibling or friend that can toto her appointments, and perhaps take her to a movie or out to lunch?  Sometimes it helps just to leave the cancer zone, even for an afternoon with the distraction of a movie or museum , ect...sending best wishes to your daughter as well.

Jerri, I replied to you on my surgical thread.  You will be my first since breaking my hand!  Trying to make you smile..
I suggest reading through the surgery threads for some great pre and post op tips.  Life will still be good, hang in there!
dx ILC/dcis excisional biopsy 5/30/08
r segmental mast (partial) snb 6/4
node neg stage1 gr ll
er+/pr- Her2 - Oncotype Dx 11
R mast 9/22/08 w DIEP
tamox,now AI 
BRCA 1 & 2 NEG
davinci hyst/bso,  

scootersmom
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Saturday, April 13, 2013 8:30 PM
Tracey:  I am sorry that your mom got the news that we all dread.  There is hope and once you learn more about the type she has and the treatment plan, you will be able to do more.  What you can do in the meantime is point her to this site and let her read the messages to others.  There are newbies (unfortunately) all the time as well as the old time survivors (don't mean to offend anyone).  We have all been there and we are here to support others as we have been supported.
Tina    
dx 2/1/11 DCIS
Lumpectomy 2/27 results DCIS/LCIS Stage 0 ER+ PR+
Bi-lateral Mastectomy 4/26 with expanders 
6/3 Surgery to remove contaminated expander due to infection.
7/22/11 Surgery to reinsert the expander. 
10/11/2011 Surgery to replace tissue expanders with implants.
 
 




scootersmom
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Saturday, April 13, 2013 8:39 PM
Jerri:

Welcome fellow draftee to the club no one really wanted to join.  It sounds like you have a pretty sound game plan.  As you stated there are positives and there are negatives.  It is great that you found someone that you are comfortable with.  That is one of the most important things.  Sounds like after you're healed you will be a very busy woman. I too had DCIS and could not get a clean margin and chose the bilateral. If you want to speak more drop me a private message.

Good luck.  
Tina    
dx 2/1/11 DCIS
Lumpectomy 2/27 results DCIS/LCIS Stage 0 ER+ PR+
Bi-lateral Mastectomy 4/26 with expanders 
6/3 Surgery to remove contaminated expander due to infection.
7/22/11 Surgery to reinsert the expander. 
10/11/2011 Surgery to replace tissue expanders with implants.
 
 




jcg
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Hello! - Saturday, April 20, 2013 10:48 PM
Hello Everyone! This is my first time joining a forum because I felt more comfortable with this than an actual support group. I also liked the dialogue of some of the forums -  so here I am!!  I was diagnosed last August while 34 weeks pregnant ( for the first time I may add @ 43 yrs old). Three days after my IDC diagnosis, a double modified radical mastectomy was performed (in one of those days I was having my baby shower in which I received many breast feeding gifts- it was a bit difficult). Everything was so quick I did not even have time to think or mourn my upcoming loss of my breasts or be fearful of having surgery for the first time. The 7 hr surgery went well though many nodes had evidence of cancer . I was not able to be staged quite yet due to my unborn baby. We induced three wks later and then a couple of wks later was placed in Stage IV BC category. I have finished my 8 chemo treatments (as of Feb 14, 2013) and had my after chemo CT yesterday.  Results: I have two small spots on my vertebrae that are stable and hardly seeable and for all other parts of body - NED! I am excited and feel very blessed. My son is now 7 months old tomorrow!! (Sorry for the rambling on - this is my first time of really writing this all out)


Diagnosis: Stage IV BC Her2+ and EST+ with mets to bone (T4 and T10) and liver
Chemo Meds: Taxotere, Herceptin and Pertuzamab and Arydia



Rena
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Re:Hello! - Saturday, April 20, 2013 11:08 PM
Hi jcg and welcome. What a year it's been for you, and now you have your wonderful baby and great results from your scan. I hope that things continue to go well for you and NED! In the meantime, enjoy your precious little boy! Wishing you all the best.
Rena age 66 California Central Coast
29-year survivor
BRCA2-positive
Dx 1986 IDC ER/PR negative 22 positive lymph nodes
CMFVP chemo weekly for one year, 7 weeks radiation
October 2007: New chassis and spark plugs!

scootersmom
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Re:Hello! - Sunday, April 21, 2013 11:36 AM
welcome jcp.  Congratulations on your baby and so sorry you had to go through this.  I am glad that your scans are stable and hope that they continue that way.

Good luck with everything to come.
Tina    
dx 2/1/11 DCIS
Lumpectomy 2/27 results DCIS/LCIS Stage 0 ER+ PR+
Bi-lateral Mastectomy 4/26 with expanders 
6/3 Surgery to remove contaminated expander due to infection.
7/22/11 Surgery to reinsert the expander. 
10/11/2011 Surgery to replace tissue expanders with implants.
 
 




bl1ssfully_d1strbd
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Saturday, April 27, 2013 4:24 PM
Hi, my name is Jennifer. I had my first mammogram about 2 weeks ago. I got a call afterward that they found something and I went back for another mammogram and an ultrasound. They confirmed that they found a 7 centimeter lesion on my left breast and scheduled a core biopsy which I had this past Friday - the most terrifying ordeal I have ever experienced. I went for the biopsy and they then told me there were two separate lesions that were 7 centimeters at 8:00 and 11:00. Now I'm just waiting on the results of that test. Going to be the longest 5-7 days of my life, it seems. I have been reading some folk's stories on here and some of this has taken some of the fear away. I've had 1 aunt (dad's sister) that died of breast cancer 22 years ago when they didn't know much of anything about breast cancer. She smoked like a feign and drank like a fish and worked in a dirty plant and I'm pretty sure that's part of what caused her cancer. Other than that I don't have any history of cancer in my family. I am glad for this forum for people to share their experiences and to know that they are not alone. I will be keeping up with this forum to learn as much as I can about this topic. Thank you for being here.
Jennifer

Tricia Keegan
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Saturday, April 27, 2013 5:23 PM
Hi Jenn and welcome, sorry you had to find us but hoping for a benign result for you, we've had people here that never smoked, drank and ran marathons and still got BC so it really is a crap shoot! I'll be keeping good thoughts for you but IF you get bad results we're all here for you too, fingers crossed and keep us posted pleased!!!!
Tricia Keegan...From Ireland Dx July '05 IDC 3/9 nodes pos..triple positive..a/c x 4..Taxol/herceptin x 12
Herceptin 1yr ..rads x35 oophorectomy Aug '06
Currently taking Arimidex /Zometa 1 x yearly
Carepage- survivortricia

scootersmom
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Sunday, April 28, 2013 10:05 AM
Jennifer, welcome.  You're right.  Waiting in the hardest part.  Your mind has a tendency to wander and you end up thinking the worst. As Tricia said, breast cancer is a crap shoot.  Unlike other types where you know a particular habit contributes (such as lung cancer with smoking or skin cancer with overexposure to sun) this has no such thing.  You have found us and we will be here for you.  I too am hoping that your results are benign.  Good luck and if you can, try to do something that will take your mind off the waiting.


Tina    
dx 2/1/11 DCIS
Lumpectomy 2/27 results DCIS/LCIS Stage 0 ER+ PR+
Bi-lateral Mastectomy 4/26 with expanders 
6/3 Surgery to remove contaminated expander due to infection.
7/22/11 Surgery to reinsert the expander. 
10/11/2011 Surgery to replace tissue expanders with implants.
 
 




Rena
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Sunday, April 28, 2013 6:41 PM
Welcome, Jennifer. I, too, am hoping that you get benign results. The waiting is hard, I know. And you're absolutely right that 22 years so, they didn't have the kind of diagnostic tests and treatments that we have now. Wishing you the best, and please keep us posted.
Rena age 66 California Central Coast
29-year survivor
BRCA2-positive
Dx 1986 IDC ER/PR negative 22 positive lymph nodes
CMFVP chemo weekly for one year, 7 weeks radiation
October 2007: New chassis and spark plugs!

Justine76
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Re:Introduce Yourself - Tuesday, June 25, 2013 5:00 PM
Hi my name is Justine I have stage IV breast cancer  .  It is also in my lungs.  In 2009 I found a lump in my breast I had a double masectomy and hysterectomy.  3/2012 I found a lump right above my left breast found out it was cancer which spread to my lungs.  I am a single mother of my baby who is going to be ten she will always be my baby her name is Kayla.  I am doing chemo Taxol and a trial drug called Veliparib.


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