My Story – by Beth

I am a 39 year old mother of 2 wonderful daughters. My mother is a 26 year breast cancer survivor, so I have had annual mammograms since I was 23. I changed jobs in 2008, right around the time that I usually have the mammogram, since insurance changed with new employer, I skipped getting it that year.

I occasionally do self breast exams, not as often as I should. Annual mammogram done November 2009, it revealed an area of concern . Biopsy was done and I was diagnosed with breast cancer 128-09. Lumpectomy and lymph node removal on 1-15-10, the lymph nodes were negative – what a relief!!! Plan was 4-6 treatments of chemo (1 treatment every 3 weeks) then follow up with radiation for 6-8 weeks. Before chemo was to begin, I had a CT scan done. Shock of my life – the breast cancer did spread to my liver.

My oncologist informed me it is very rare for the cancer to spread without showing up in the lymph nodes; but that it can happen. Chemo plan changed, now 4-6 cycles (1 cycle consists of 1 chemo treatment, once a week, for 3 weeks) and then will follow up with medication for 5 years. I just had cycle 2, week 2 today and will have another CT scan done after next weeks treatment to see if the chemo is affecting the tumor in my liver.

Through all of this, I have had the absolute best support from my husband and daughters, my sister and mother, other family members, coworkers and friends. You must have a sense of humor through the whole process, it truly helps you get through this and I believe helps you fight better . You must always stay positive and refuse to let cancer beat you !!!

submitted by Beth
Glenshaw, PA

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