by drgnfly64 on Fri Dec 07, 2012 07:24 PM
I am sorry to hear what you are going through. I will pray for you. I am just tired of feeling I am in the dark with all these tests and the waiting is driving me nuts to no end. I did find out that the 2 tumors are individual masses that grew on their own and 1 did not break off from the other. I don't know, but that doesn't sound so good to me. Sigh.....
I hope all goes well for you. And word from a very humorous survivor friend of mine, she started losing her hair, shaved her head and it grew back in curly and lighter in color.
I wish you the best!
by LizaMarie711 on Fri Dec 07, 2012 07:26 PM
Thank you Theresa , praying that you do not have to go through the chemo. Not hearing quickly can sometimes be a good thing. Please let me know when you hear something, i will be thinking of you
by drgnfly64 on Fri Dec 07, 2012 07:33 PM
Thank you and thinking of you as well!
by LizaMarie711 on Fri Dec 07, 2012 09:06 PM
were all in this together...somehow someway
by artsyred52 on Tue Dec 11, 2012 09:05 PM
Theresa and Liza,
I wanted to respond to both of you.
First, I am a registered nurse (37 yrs) and have worked in a variety of settings including oncology (but many years ago). Second, I was diagnosed w/ stage 1 BC without lymph gland involvement on a routine mammogram 1 yr ago. My tumor was 1 cm, estrogen dependent, Her2 negative.
Because of my previous history working as a nurse in oncology back in the 80s, I was TERRIFIED of everything. However, things have worked out well for me. I just wanted to share a few things with both of you...some from my experience as a nurseand others from my experience as a patient. Perhaps, they will be helpful.
My tumor was unusual-soft and difficult to palpate (the surgeon couldn't even feel it during a breast exam). Initially, he thought it would not be cancer but it was. I had a 2nd surgery to get clean margins with no cancer cells (lumpectomy) and removal of 2 lymph glands,which came back negative.
My oncologist told me that many MDs would recommend I get radiation and chemo as this would be the safest choice for long term survival. He said that statistics showed that approx 5% of women who had radiation only would get a reoccurrence 5-10 years later and it would kill them. However, he said there was a new test that could evaluate my individual tumor cells and identify my level of risk for reoccurrence. If the result was "low", I wouldn't need chemo. He sent the sample off to some lab and the result did come back as low chance of reoccurrence.so I only had 61/2 weeks of radiation which wasn't bad. Started feeling tired and had loss of appetite about half way through. Also, got a bit depressed. I am a redhead so my skin developed a bad rash and little blisters but they had a special cream I used which helped a lot. When I was done, my skin healed up in less than a week.
Regarding anti-nausea medications: there are many and everyone responds differently to them. I always tell patients that if a medication isn't working, make sure you ask for something else....there are many choices. Zofran is one of the better ones.
Regarding chemo: Hydrate yourself well before treatments,you will feel better. Treat your anxiety; high anxiety escalates fear, pain, stress, etc which can increase nausea and make the overall experience worse.
Regarding the injection after chemo (we called it Neupogen): try not to be afraid of it. It is a good thing. People can die from infections after their chemo drops their white counts so low they were vulnerable to everything. Yes, your bones can ache as the medication is stimulating your bone marrow to produce new white blood cells but try to feel fortunate that you are living at a time when they have this med. Treat yourself as if you have the flu with hot baths, etc.
Well, maybe this has been of assistance in some way. I send both of you my best wishes...you can do it!
by drgnfly64 on Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:12 PM
Thank you 1000 times over for your response. I was so relieved to read what you had taken the thoughtful time to type out. I go back to my surgeon tomorrow, 12/12/12 for my post-op check-up. He is referring me to a local medical oncologist who has a very good reputation and our cancer center here has a very good reputation for a very caring staff. My path came back on my nodes and tumors as follows:
Glandular/tubular differentiation: 3, Nuclear pleomorphism: 3, Mitotic count: 1. 5 lymph nodes examined. 0 with metastasis. Tumor size, greatest dimension: 2.1 cm. Multiple foci of invasive carcinoma. 2 foci examined: sizes of individual foci: 8mm/2.3cm. The tumors seem to have everyone confused (for a lack of better terms) because both of the tumors have similar histology, having mixed ductal and lobular features. The invasive pattern is suggestive of lobular carcinoma, but the tumor cells stain positively for e-Cadherin by IHC. The e-Cadherin stain confirms the presence of lobular carcinoma in-situ extending into the ducts and no DCIS was identified. I am still waiting for the path results of the HER2/neu hormone receptor tests which I hope will be available to me tomorrow. I also hope that I will learn more about what treatments are awaiting me. I know positively that 7 weeks of radiation await me, 5 days a week until complete. The chemo is still a mystery to me, as I still am waiting the other results and to meet my oncologist.
Thank you once again for your caring response and hope that your recovery continues to be a good one!
by artsyred52 on Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:37 PM
Your tumor size is on the smaller side and with no metastacies to the lymph glands...that all looks good. I,also, had some cells that were outside the walls of the tumor..."invasive ductal carcinoma". I am not familiar with DCIS. Was your tumor estrogen and/or progesterone dependent like mine? I started taking Tamoxifen in Aug...no major side effects except hot flashes.
Let me know what you find out after your appointment. I can't remember the name of the test that predicts chance of reoccurrence but it was "onco.....". Would be interested in your oncologists' recommendations.
Good luck...been there :)
by JoyceJJL on Wed Dec 12, 2012 12:44 AM
Jan I actually had invasive ductal cancer also. So this last time there were no Lumps, which floored me when I went for my mammo, thinking all was ok, but wasnt turned out to be stage 3b stage breast cancer. Had 3 lumpectomies to try to get clear margins, but they couldnt then got a bad infection, so I immediately talked to my PCP and said I want to go to another Hospital closer with a surgeon I had heard was excellent. She immediately, after I sogned off from the Dr in Boston, took me on and had a double mastectomy, which strong rounds of chemo & radiation. Neulasta shots. I am still on a 5 yr hormone pill. I tried arimidex, but had side effects am s taking Femara now, but I think depending on the strength they basically all ruin your bones . My oncologist & Pcp said thats the bad side of those pills, so basically I put up with it. But I['m 65 now, had my first round of cancer 22 yrs ago, and came back in other breast 22 years later. So I take it day by day and my goal of the day is "If I can make just one person smile I;ve met my goal" Its horrid disease, But we've all got it or had it, and might as well try to make the best of a lousy situation. I have always felt that I can help others by the things I went thru, as far as cancer goes. As it truly helps me knowing I can make it easier for someone else. Well if there is easy. lol I have a "super" oncologists. Actually the same one my Mom had, we went thru radiation together. And we were closer then than ever before. Unfortunately she died shortly after that. But we talked about so many things, and when I lost my hair she actually shaved her head also.. She did try that really expensive pill, but had side effects to it, so she stopped, as she knew she only had 6 months and didnt want them to be worse. But she really only got 2 months. Wow I really have rambled on here, but anyways if theres anything I can say or do to help someone else just ask. I do have to take some pills for the joint & bone pain from the hormone pill, but thats normal I have been told. Altho my Aunt took Tamoxofen 8 yrs ago and only had hot flashes, so maybe it depends on the mgs or the type of cancer or age or whatever lol. One never knows all the details with the "C" other than it can really get you down or try and have alot of upbeat friends and relatives help you. Did you get nauseaous (sp) with your treatments? Theres alot of different pills they tried and they seemed to be so helpful with me. But anyways before I go into my lifes story lol, I will close hoping someone got something out of this. And you're right when you say 'been there' take care & Bless you Joyce
by Bonniee on Wed Dec 12, 2012 02:02 AM
I had invasive ductal with lobular features stage 2b with no tumor in the breast, or anywhere else and 3 positive lymph nodes. Breast cancer is so strange, so very different in different women.
That was 4 years ago. I had axilliary node desection, chemo, radiation and I am on Aromaisn, because the others gave me so much bone and muscle pain it was intolerable. It is still somewhat, but not as bad.
Estrogen pos, Hers- neg. Taking Zometa 4 mg IV every 6 mos for my bones. Really would like to stop that. I am waiting for results of my latest bone density.
All I can say is you all are really brave. We are a tough crowd. I have met amazing people on my journey. I take life a day at a time and enjoy life to its fullest. No one knows how long anyone has. But, . . . .there are millions of us! We stand united! And brave. My hats off to you all.
Bless you all! Bonnie
by JoyceJJL on Wed Dec 12, 2012 02:20 AM
God Bless you Bonnie: hey took 5 lymph nodes with me too on this last one. The first one 22 years ago, the Dr took all of them. 22 years ago was different then tho. But he was great. I was lucky it didnt return for that many years. I agree with you it is different in every woman, I tried Arimidex and the Aromasin, had problems with both, the Femara (letrozole) isnt much beter, and Yes I agree it does a heck of a job on our joints, So you must have another year or so to go on the hormone therapy? Right back atcha as being brave, I think all of us are. And Yes United we do stand. Please keep up with the good attitude makes a difference. But during it, its kinda hard to maintain that one. Keep in touch my Friend.
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